‘I try to draw the music out of people.’

Music therapy, James Danna
(Katherine C. Cohen/Boston Children’s Hospital)

James Danna

Music Therapist

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I’ve been a music therapist at Boston Children’s for two years now. I always wanted to do philanthropic work my whole life, so this is an opportunity where I can use my musical talents for good. It’s a blessing to be here.

Music therapy is the utilization of music to achieve a non-musical goal — that might be bringing family members together, preparing a child for surgery or regulating a heart rate.

Every one of us is musical, so I try to draw the music out of people. I’ve seen kids speak their first words and move their arms and legs for the first time in music therapy sessions. It’s phenomenal.

I work with children all across the hospital and our satellites. It’s been wonderful seeing patients like Joy who show remarkable response to the therapeutic medium of music. I speak for all four music therapists here when I say that the person we’re working with is — in that moment — the most important person in the whole world.

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