When you are listening to music you forget about problems, you forget about loneliness, you forget about depression, things like that.
—Alex Morales, Resident, Lemon Grove Care Center, Cal.
What Care Professionals and Residents Say
“Despite the enormous sums of money spent on mood- and behavior-altering medications that are often not particularly effective, nothing compares to these iPods when it comes to improving quality of life.”
— Tony Lewis, President and CEO, Cobble Hill Health Center, Brooklyn, N.Y.
It’s been the best experience of my life, seeing the change in our residents as they interact with the students and the music.
We have had veterans burst into tears after receiving their iPod. Tears of joy.
One gentleman who had a diagnosis of failure to thrive actually gained weight and began taking an interest in the world after he started using the device.
I especially enjoy seeing a particular resident wheeling down the hall doing what staff call ‘the wheel chair boogie’ and singing to Roy Orbison or Jerry Lee Lewis.
One of the more positive results we’re seeing is a reduction in the need for psychotropic medication. Music soothes the residents to the point where they actually may not need all of the medications that they needed prior to going on [Music & Memory’s] program.
One resident used to do a lot of calling out during meals. She couldn’t sit through dinner. Now her aides set her up with an iPod a half-hour ahead of time. She’s able to sit and enjoy her meal.
Understandably, most things here are done to us or for us, attending to our security and our health. But the iPod program is done with us, and that makes all the difference.
Its been really beautiful to interact with residents of a nearby nursing home and know even if we can’t cure or reverse their disease we can at least create a positive and supportive environment for them to flourish in.
I loved having contact with the residents, learning their stories, seeing the recognition in their eyes when they hear their music, seeing the smiles and sometimes the tears. Being able to tell others about the power of this program.
Families are excited about how some of their loved ones are more engaged in conversation, in better mood, and actually awake and more engaged throughout the day.
“You can see the value of this program as being not just a casual activity, but almost a necessity for daily care, because of the promise and potential that it has for enhancing quality of life.”
— Dr. Concetta Tomaino, Executive Director, Institute for Music and
The following video interviews are by Michael Rossato-Bennett, producer of the 2012 documentary, Alive Inside: The Story of Music & Memory.
Louise Dueno, Director of Recreation at Cobble Hill Health Center, Brooklyn, N.Y., describes her care facility’s approach to planning out the implementation process for Music & Memory’s personalized playlist program.
Mary Grace Lynch, Director of Therapeutic Recreation at the A. Holly Patterson Extended Care Center, Uniondale, N.Y., explains the ability of personalized music to create both a private space with community and a means for social connection.
Maya Santarina, RN, Community Director, Cobble Hill, talks about one particular resident’s experience with her iPod, resulting in improved demeanor and increased assertiveness.
Judy Nembhart, CNA, of the A. Holly Patterson Extended Care Center, describes the iPod’s effects on her residents, making them more alert, communicative and alive.
Ted Nelson, MSW, of the Beth Abraham Residential Nursing Home, Bronx, N.Y., describes his experience with the iPod program at his facility.
Marian Epstein, Director of Social Work at A. Holly Paterson Extended Care Center, talks about the iPod programs’ ability to decrease agitation among residents.
Tony Lewis, President and CEO of Cobble Hill Health Center, explains benefits of the iPod program for both residents and staff.
Ariel Weissberger, Music Therapist, Beth Abraham Residential Nursing Home, explains why he would “definitely recommend the iPod program to other music therapists.”