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`Music at the Bedside
for a Healing Environment'

 Harp.for Healing.
Donna Adams-Profeta, Certified Music Practitioner

*Photo by Karen Johnson RN, CNOR,
Ellis Hospital, Oncology Dept., Schenectady, NY 
Teresa Jewett RNc, BSN, looking on



For MHTP Video see box below table of contents

Music Helps!

What is a Certified Music Practitioner
What is expected of the Patient?
How to Contact a Music Practitioner 
Memorial/Bereavement Services
Ongoing Services


My Thoughts
An Instrument for Healing
The Music For Healing & Transition Program
A Music Sampling
Therapeutic Harp Music and Related Links


MHTP has a wonderfully insightful video presenting music practitioners at work,
along with comments from patients, practitioners, hospital staff and administrators.  
To view the video, go to

Harp.for Healing

  Music Helps!

Did you know that LIVE music has beneficial effects that contribute to the overall care of patients?

There is a great deal of research being done to document the beneficial effects of music on those who are ill.  Music is being used successfully with many kinds of patients including those who are temporarily ill and injured, chronically ill, critically ill, Alzheimer’s patients, premature babies, birthing mothers, the comatose and the dying.  Music is also being used as an aid in preparation for and after surgery.  Live music, in particular, has been shown to relax the mind and body, allowing more effective responses to medical treatment and enhancing the self-healing work of the immune system.  Unlike recordings, a Music Practitioner is able to detect the patient's changing needs and adapt the music at a moment's notice.

You too can experience the benefits of live music or give it as a gift by enlisting the services of a trained Certified Music Practitioner TM.

For more concise information on how therapeutic music works see the article: What is Healing Music? A Closer Look

  What is a Certified Music Practitioner?

A Certified Music Practitioner (CMP)  brings pleasant and appropriate live music to the bedside of the ill and dying.  Each Music Practitioner is a graduate of The Music for Healing & Transition Program (MHTP)TM*, a course of study which includes medical and musical classes provided by qualified instructors.  It is an MP's function to provide intentionally therapeutic music at the bedside in clinical settings.  A Music Practitioner is not a Music Therapist and can not provide psychiatric care, nor do they require active participation.  The music itself is a form of passive therapy.

Services provided by a Music Practitioner, rather than being for entertainment purposes, are meant to nurture and support.  Providing beneficial, therapeutic music can best be accomplished on a one-on-one basis and in small group settings (i.e. 2 to 4 patients).  See Therapeutic Music Applications vs. Performance for additional info. 

A Music Practitioner may be engaged by you to play for a friend, family member, or for yourself.

The Music Practitioner will consult with you regarding the style of music and the instrument to be played, for how long, and how often.  The style of music usually depends on the condition and concerns of the patient.

For some 'Frequently Asked Questions' and additional scientific evidence of music as a healing modality, please visit the MHTP FAQ link.

* A nonprofit educational organization


 What is expected of the Patient?

It is not necessary for the patient to interact physically or even verbally with the Music Practitioner, especially since a patient may be under medication or anesthesia.  MP's can even play during surgery.  Whether or not the patient is awake and aware is simply a factor in the style of music played.  Research has shown that even comatose patients can benefit from live music.

In short, nothing is expected of patients except their physical presence.


  How to Contact a Music Practitioner

Music Practitioners, who are certified graduates of The Music for Healing & Transition ProgramTM, work independently or affiliate with health care institutions, private health care providers and community organizations.  Go to the CMP Directory for a listing of practitioners in your area.

I am in the Upstate NY Capital District area and can be contacted at:

Donna Adams-Profeta, CMP
Ballston Lake, NY
(518) 383-3524
email: donnaharps@aol.com


NOTE: Unless you are a Yahoo! user, please use the AOL address.  If you have a Yahoo! address,
your email bounces back or you don't hear back in a timely manner, please use the Yahoo! address.
Our apologies for any inconvenience.


  Memorial/Bereavement Services

At the 2014 Candlelight Vigil for Victims of Crime
service, sponsored by the Saratoga Co. DA's office.
Photo by Erica Miller / The Saratogian.

Grieving is a very private and individual process
, that we are all subject to at some point in our lives.

Upon the passing of a loved one, one of the most powerful ways that we can express our feelings and celebrate their lives is through music.  And perhaps  the most powerful instrument for fulfilling that purpose is the graceful and uniquely suited Celtic Harp, used for centuries to help soothe the distraught and create an environment that can both facilitate healing and gently bid our loved ones goodbye.

Playing in these situations is a natural extension of the therapeutic music training.  Delicate and unobtrusive, yet capable of touching us deeply, the heartfelt strains of the harp can help us to define our own myriad emotions.  Whether in large or intimate gatherings, the harp can provide an air of grace for bereaved families, the dearly departed and those paying their respects.

In addition to private services, Donna has played annually (except for a couple of years) for the NYS Funeral Director's Association memorial service at their yearly convention, since 2005, and the annual Candlelight Vigil for Victims of Crime, sponsored by the Saratoga County District Attorney's office, since 2008.

*Donna Adams-Profeta is available for memorial services and wakes in the NY Capital District and environs.  For additional information, please see the contact information above.


 Ongoing Services

Donna has been providing therapeutic harp sessions, on a contractual basis, at the following nursing/rehabilitation facilities:

 Ellis Residential & Rehabilitation Center, Schenectady, NY - 6/12 to present
 River Ridge Living Center, Amsterdam, NY - 11/13 to present
 Fulton Center for Rehabilitation and Healthcare, Gloversville, NY - 4/14 to present
 Saratoga Hospital Nursing Home/Rehabilitation, Saratoga Springs, NY - 5/05 to 7/16


  My Thoughts

The harp, perhaps more than any other instrument, lends itself to producing musical tones that touch us and have the capacity to enhance our own innate healing responses.

The story of David playing his harp for the ailing King Saul is more than just a metaphor.  More than two thousand years later, we have come full circle and are once again employing that beautiful and ancient instrument to restorative effect.

My experience playing the Celtic Harp, combined with my love of ancient and traditional music and training as a Music Practitioner, allows me to draw upon a tried and true repertoire, as well as utilize my own compositions to meet the patient’s needs.

I have found joy in this ancient instrument and wish to share it’s soothing and restorative properties with those in need - thus creating a healing environment all their own.

                                                                                                           -- Donna Adams-Profeta

.."Music is the soul's most basic form of expression.". - Donna Adams-Profeta


   An Instrument for Healing

The Kortier Wrenfaire (at right) was purchased specifically for my therapeutic harp activities.  I adore it's gothic profile, renaissance-styled stave-back soundbox, and it's a mere 15 lbs!!!  Conversely, it has ultra-modern, flourocarbon strings and sounds like a cross between a nylon-strung and a wire-strung harp.  Wire-strungs have bell-like tones, but
can be too piercing for healthcare environments and nylon-strungs are warmer.  The Wren combines the best of both. It has also become my preferred concert & recording harp (we're getting organized to start a 2nd album).  

All in all, I find it's voice to be both charming and elegant and well
suited for therapeutic applications.



Donna, what a wonderful atmosphere you created at our Channel 13 Bloodmobile.  You took an empty storefront and made it feel like home.  The donors were very impressed by it.  As they were lying on the bed very relaxed, they were all commenting on the surroundings.  The donations didn't hurt a bit with the soothing harp music.

Thank you once again for your help with this worthy cause.

Paula Fuda, R.N., Operation Supervisor
American Red Cross Blood Services


Dear Donna,

Thank you very much for bringing yourself and your harp to the hospital and flooding our floor with beautiful healing music.

You lifted the spirits of the ward as everyone who heard you happily wanted to know who you were and how we had come to be so blessed.

Blessings to you and your harp.
Loren Wheeler


 The Music For Healing & Transition ProgramTM (MHTP)

A National Educational Certification Program for Musicians and Music Students who wish to become Music Practitioners.  For more information on The Music for Healing and Transition ProgramTM and a listing of Certified Music Practitioners, please click on the links throughout this page or contact the National Address:


PO Box 127
Hillsdale, NY 12529
email: mhtp@mhtp.org

MHTPTM is accredited by the National Standards Board of Therapeutic Musicians (NSBTM)


  A Music Sampling

You can listen to samples from my CD, Brynna's Aire *Plus Bonus Cuts*, for examples from my originals repertoire.  Note that a number of the recordings have additional instrumentation that would not be present at the bedside.  The CD is available through cdbaby and locally too...should hiring a music practitioner not be possible.

Thanks to my husband, John Profeta, who plays all the background arrangements and produced and engineered the album in his Silver Streak Studio.  What a guy! 


   Therapeutic Harp Music and Related Links

The Music for Healing & Transition Program (MHTP)
(various instruments & voice)

International Harp Therapy Program (IHTP)

Bedside Harp

Clinical Musician Certification Program (CMCP)
(various instruments & voice[?])

Vibroacoustic Harp Therapy

Chalice of Repose Project

Music Thanatology Association International (MTAI)

Vox Mundi Project
(For voice)

National Standards Board for Therapeutic Musicians (NSBTM)

Harp Therapy Journal

Whispers CD
Promoting music for the soul and research for a cure for ovarian cancer


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Copyright 2001-2017, Donna L. Profeta
Created: 12/14/01

Last updated: 3/2/17


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