Rowena Harris

Music Therapy

What do you teach at the Con?

Music Therapy.

What is it that you love about teaching music – particularly at Wollongong Conservatorium?

As a Music Therapist, I love how music opens up a world of communication and enjoyment for my clients.

Please share a particular career highlight and why it’s special to you.

I was working with a lady who was suffering from end stage Dementia. She sat in a tub chair all day, her head moving from side to side, unable to do anything, unable to focus on anything. I started a vocalisation using her breathing pattern as a basis for the rhythm and tempo of my song. Part way through the improvisation, she stopped moving her head, looked directly at me and said “Thankyou”, then her eyes drifted away, and her head started to move again. However, for that split second, she was in the moment, and had awareness of what was happening a round her.

What’s one piece of music that you’d recommend people listen to?

The Moldau, Smetena.

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