College - Author 1

College of Liberal Arts

Department - Author 1

Music Department

Degree Name - Author 1

BA in Music



Primary Advisor

Craig Russell, College of Liberal Arts, Music Department


Music is universal and a powerful tool. It can build bridges, break our hearts, and even be used as a weapon of war. This paper asks the question of how is music being used for the benefit of human beings, specifically those with dementia and Alzheimer's. Because music is such an integral part of our everyday lives, it can be used to preserve the quality of life of people with any sort of disability or disease—which is where the use of music therapy becomes a relevant and effective medical intervention. In this paper, research from the existing literature as well as information gained from interviews from Concetta Tomaino and Linda Gerdner are used to discuss and answer this question, as well as argue what needs to happen next in the realm of music therapy and Alzheimer’s disease. This paper includes the definitions of music therapy and Alzheimer’s disease, the effectiveness of music therapy as a medical intervention on those with Alzheimer’s disease, specific case studies, a discussion on what needs to happen next in the industry of music therapy, and extended comments from the interviews.



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