Foundations of dementia care for music therapy and music based interventions: Part I


  • Amy Clements-Cortés University of Toronto
  • Suzanne B. Hanser Berklee College of Music
  • Melissa Mercadal-Brotons Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya



This paper defines the common needs of people with dementia, and how these can be addressed through clinical music therapy and music-based approaches. It describes different types of dementia, brain activity, and functioning, as they relate to differential responses of people with dementia to music. The article explores the ways music affects and can affect behavior, and views how the research literature documents responsiveness to music. Implications of these findings for music therapy practices are also provided

Author Biographies

Amy Clements-Cortés, University of Toronto

Assistant Professor, University of Toronto

Contract Academic Faculty, Wilfrid Laurier University

Suzanne B. Hanser, Berklee College of Music



Melissa Mercadal-Brotons, Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya

Director Master Program in Music Therapy



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