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Listening is Healing Program

NJFO'sListening is Healing project grew out of a collaboration between Dr. Leah Oswanski, Coordinator of the Music Therapy Program at the Simon Cancer Center (Morristown Memorial Hospital) in Morristown , and Maestro David Wroe. These two colleagues shared a strong passion for the many ways in which music can play a diverse role in communities, and specifically, how music can heal or contribute to palliative care. As a result they began to talk about ways that orchestras could support the work of trained music therapists using the latest research models.

Dr. Oswanski, Maestro Wroe and NJFO have formulated a bi-monthly, year round, in-hospital music therapy program using small musical ensembles, including (but not limited to) combinations of harp and violin, violin and cello, keyboard and flute. The ensembles perform specifically selected music for patients with cancer in the chemotherapy infusion centers and oncology wards, at private visitor congregating areas associated with the cancer wards, and in general hospital gathering areas. The performance methods used are based on research developed to increase both qualitative healing as well as positive patient experience. Beyond the obvious benefit for the patients, it is em powering for a musician to use their musical gifts to help people heal in a direct manner, as well as the very personal satisfaction one receives performing for people who simply can't get to concerts.

Through "Listening is Healing" NJFO’s mission is to holistically serve Northern New Jersey with the power of music, and this project, beyond the many concerts, musicales, and educational events presented throughout the season, helps to bring live music, dynamic interaction, healing, and a sense of normalcy to patients, their families, and staff members working at the hospital.

Listening is Healing is supported, in part, by a generous gift of the Head Family Foundation