Sunday, July 28, 2013

Moving Beyond Anecdotal

Anecdotally, a lot of people feel that making music has therapeutic benefits. This article talks about a new research project at UC San Francisco to see what empirical data there might be to support that idea. 

Over the next four years, a dozen choirs will be created at senior centers around San Francisco. . . . . The project will assess the impact on participants’ cognition, mobility and overall wellbeing during their choral year. The researchers also will examine whether singing in a community choir is a cost-effective way to promote health among culturally diverse older adults.

My interest in music therapy has always centered on the benefits of actually making it yourself as opposed to listening to it. All the neuroscience on how listening to it affects us is tremendously helpful, but in the long run, studies like this one, assuming good data is found, will be much more helpful when advocating for music making and music therapy.

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