Music has been used as a healing intervention as far back as the most ancient cultures. The harp, with its unique resonance, has powerful therapeutic qualities. Approximately twenty years ago, a group of dedicated harpists pioneered a movement to train players to bring live harp music to the bedside of the sick, whether in a facility or at home.
Research continues to confirm the many benefits of harp music, as a complementary modality, to people across the illness-wellness continuum.
Therapeutic harp music is not intended to be entertainment, but rather to calm and heal. As a trained clinical musician, I can sense the condition and needs of the individual, and play what will be most helpful, whether familiar or unfamiliar, rhythmic or free flowing, major or minor. The music will also address the needs of others in the room, with sensitivity to diverse cultural and religious orientations.
The response to even the briefest of live harp music is extraordinary. Patients become calm and close their eyes, or experience an emotional release. Staff and family members stop to see where the music is coming from, and exclaim “it’s so beautiful” or “it’s so relaxing.”
Harp music seems to cut through stress instantaneously, benefiting everyone in the environment.
Where therapeutic harp may be offered
Who may benefit