Suter Seminar: Medical Benefits of Music

Where Science Center, 104

Duration 1 hour

Medical Benefits of Music

Virginia Bethune, BA
Harpist, Certified Music Practitioner (CMP)
Harrisonburg, Va

In addition to its benefits in performance, entertainment, and worship, music is increasingly being valued in Western cultures for its contribution to the world of medicine. Therapeutic musicians play harp, flute, dulcimer, drums, cello, lyre, etc. or sing at the bedside, the resulting vibration and resonance can alleviate pain and insomnia, cause heart rate to become regular, stabilize vital signs, as well as other health benefits. Music Practitioners are not outcome-based as are music therapists. The primary intention is to provide a place where healing may occur even when cure is not possible.

Ms. Bethune received a BA in Philosophy from Agnes Scott College. She has been a life-long musician, serving as organist for 14 years at the Blacksburg United Methodist Church, during which time she began playing the harp at age 60. Since that time, she has recorded seven CDs, most of which are entitled Healing Harp Melodies. With her husband and other Blacksburg, Va musicians they have sold over 11,000 copies with $100,000 in gross sales. Two Habitat homes in Blacksburg and Elkton have been the beneficiaries of these funds. As a Certified Music Practitioner (NOT a music therapist) through the Music for Healing and Transition Program she offered therapeutic harp music at the bedside and spent five years as a Musician-in-Residence at University of Virginia Health System 2007-2012. She is hoping to help inaugurate a similar program at Rockingham Memorial Hospital and Augusta Health.

Intended Audience General Public

Tags SCIENCE, Intellectual Life

Contact Information

Name Lynn Quay

Phone # 432.4400