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Music Therapy: Reconstructing the Human Spirit

     How do you repair the emotions and suffering of residents of the 98% destroyed St. Bernard Parish currently living in a stark white trailer park?  With Music!
     With the one year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina just weeks away, New Orleans residents face difficult memories and triggers of the tragedy that gripped America and the World one year ago.  In response, an innovative type of therapy, recreational music making, is taking place in St. Bernard Parish this week.  Led by Los Angeles based music therapist, Christine Stevens of UpBeat Drum Circles, the ongoing drum circles help St. Bernard residents express feelings and repair the human spirit needed to re-construct life after Hurricane Katrina.  Drums and percussion instruments from Remo Drum Company make it easy for anyone to join in the music making experience.
Medical evidence has shown that group drumming is a successful form of stress reduction that improves immune functioning, reduces burnout, and improves mood states. 
     The ongoing drum circles in St. Bernard Parish and special training events for staff at River Oaks Hospital provide music making experiences for self-care and healing.  According to Stevens, “drumming has been a healing tool for centuries. Music can express the inexpressible and bring communities together.”

Author: Steve Cannizaro, 504-874-0643
Contact: Christine Stevens, 310-770-3398,
Where:St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana   
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