mcm okanagan

Music: The Forgotten Pillar of Mental Health

A ground-breaking concert-lecture series

The world of medicine is beginning to discover what many healthcare workers, music therapists, and many of us have known for decades: music is a powerful tool for helping us to manage our brains, our emotions, and our bodies.

For instance, did you know that music can help manage pain? Did you know that music can help therapists teach someone to walk again, and also can somehow provide a signal to children as to who to like, and who not to?

These are just a few of the discoveries from the Okanagan McMaster series, created in collaboration with Concerts in Care Ontario and presented in the past few months, via Zoom, the live series having been cancelled by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Built on the theme of Music: The Forgotten Pillar of Mental Health, this 5-part series covered everything from Music and Pain Management to Social Prescription. The series was a result of a conversation with Dr. John Miller at Resident Affairs, McMaster University and was generously supported by the Okanagan McMaster Chapter, and Concerts in Care Ontario.

Now, we are happy to share the recordings of these Zoom sessions with you – our Program, Recreation and Activity Managers, our musicians, and our supporters.

While our main focus was to provide new doctors with the seeds of this learning to help them in their personal lives and their practices, we know that many of you in our community will benefit from this knowledge.

It has been a privilege to research speakers and musicians and to support them as they work together to create a framework for presenting and demonstrating the concepts of music as a tool for mental wellness.

We hope you will agree that these are fascinating topics. We encourage you to watch the recorded sessions and to share this knowledge.

Music and Pain Management

Featuring Dr. Lee Bartel, Hamilton Philharmonic Concertmaster Stephen Sitarski, and violinist Sophie Drouin

Music and Stress

featuring Dr. Laurel Trainor, Rachael Finnerty, and the Aubrey Wilson Quartet

Music and Behaviour

featuring Aimee Berends, Margaret (Bo) Bardos, and Krista Rhodes

Social Prescription

featuring Dr. Kate Mulligan and Azuline Duo

Music as an Ongoing Tool for Mental Wellness

featuring Chelsea McKinnon, Lesley Bouza, and Ross Ingles