Dancing the Neural Tango: Dr. Summa-Chadwick Talks Music & Neurological Therapy

Mar 12, 2015

Dr. Martha Summa-Chadwick is a concert pianist and Executive Director of Music Therapy Gateway in Communications, Inc.  She joins us today to talk about ways music and rhythm can be used to help patients with Parkinson's disease and autism.  MTGIC has a free concert, Tales of the Neural Tango, coming up March 22nd, and so Dr. Summa-Chadwick is also telling us how neurological disorders affected classical composers Robert Schumann and Olivier Messiaen.

From a press release about the concert:

Tales of the Neural Tango

Cadek Conservatory March 22, 2015 -3:00pm

Tales of the Neural Tango, a concert/workshop event designed to entertain as well as enlighten the audience to the benefits of music in therapeutic environments, will take place on Sunday afternoon, March 22nd at 3:00 pm at the Cadek Conservatory on the UTC campus.  The nonprofit organization Music Therapy Gateway in Communications, Inc. (MTGIC) partners with Cadek in presenting this unique interactive concert experience featuring classical piano music accompanied by live demonstration and video clips of examples of biomedical music techniques. These techniques can be positively utilized in therapeutic settings for such neurological afflictions as stroke, autism, dementia, and Parkinson’s disease.

Martha Summa-Chadwick, concert pianist and Executive Director of MTGIC, presents and performs for this event. The concert will start with a brief overview of how music is perceived in the brain and central nervous system, and then proceed to performances of works by composers who had neural afflictions (Beethoven – deafness, Schumann – bi-polar disorder, and Messiaen – synesthesia).   Interactive demonstration and media clips will be intermingled throughout the performance to show how biomedical music techniques can be utilized to help those with sensorimotor, speech, or cognition challenges.

The second half of the concert features the mesmerizing beat of dance music composed by Tjeknavorian and Piazzolla. This music is full of rhythm that inspires the listener to effortlessly tap fingers or toes to the beat, thus experiencing the effectiveness of music helping to promote muscular movement.

This event is free of charge and open to the public, and is part of a recital series made possible by a grant from ArtsBuild and the Tennessee Arts Commission to support advocating for the cause of music in therapy.  Cadek Hall is located at 725 Oak Street on the UTC campus.  For further information about the concert or biomedical music techniques, please go to www.mtgic.org or www.marthasumma.com.