My First Experience with the Healing Power of Music - Moving from Anger to Joy!
In my early 20's I was dancing with a group of girls, ballet, tap, and jazz, under the direction of Maxine Asbury, my first mentor in the field of music and arts. We had a troupe that would perform in the Nursing and Retirement Homes. Little did Ms. A. know that her influence in my life was about to shape my destiny for the rest of my life. One evening we did a performance at a local nursing home. We danced our program and sang songs from the early 1900's. After the show, the Activity Director ran up to us and said, "You have no idea what you have done tonight!" She then shared with us how the music had created a breakthrough with one of her residents.
One of her new residents had been there for several months. He was so angry that he had to live there that he refused to speak to a word to anyone for three months. While we were performing something shifted within him. He began to open up and share about how the performance reminded him of the USO Shows he had seen when he was a soldier in World War II. As he shared the memories of how the girls would sing and dance, a smile brightened his face, he became joyful, his attitude became pleasant, and he was once again engaged in life. Did the circumstances in his life change? NO, he still had to live in the nursing home, but because of the music his attitude and outlook on life did change that day. His mood changed from anger to joy.
This event still touches me even to this day. I can still see this story in my heart and mind as if it happened today. The brilliance of this experience stuck with me as I noticed, for the first time, the powerful impact that music can make on someone's life. As I experienced more of these kinds of stories I began to realize my destiny, my calling, to bring the healing power music to the senior communities.
Music makes a difference!