Doing the Right Thing: Taking the symphony beyond the stage

Doing the Right Thing

KIMBERLY, Wis. (WFRV) – Clients at CP Fox Cities are exploring music thanks to a program called “In Harmony”.

The pilot program is taking local musicians off stage and into the community. “Music therapy is wonderful. We use it as a tool to help folks reach non-musical goals. Speech and language, movement more social emotional goals we use it to help facilitate those things” explains music therapist, Rachel Lofton.

“It is amazing the effects on the clients when the listen to the live music. We have some clients who might be a bit agitated, may have a lot of anxiety… they really calm down, the smiles come out and its a really happy time” says Rebecca Kamenick, Site Manager for CP Fox Cities.

The musicians are members of the Fox Valley Symphony Orchestra, doing outreach to celebrate their 50th anniversary. “As part of that initiative we want to make sure we are reaching everyone in the Fox Valley, that we are truly the Fox Valley’s orchestra    we began looking at some of the barriers to overcome in attending our concert and that is where in harmony came from” says Oliver Zornow with the Fox Valley Symphony Orchestra.

The orchestra partnered with Expressive Therapies and Lawrence University to make the program a success. The pilot season of “In Harmony” is taking place at CP Fox Cities, Madison Middle School and Appleton West.

According to Lofton “In the high school specifically we are able to address some of the more emotional things. We talk about problem solving, maybe ways to manage your anger. That sort of thing”.

The musicians are also experiencing something new. “They are used to being up on the concert stage and they have got 2000 people out there, but they can not watch their response to their music. Where as these intimate settings allow them to see that” Zornow says.

The goal is to make the “In Harmony” program permanent next symphony season, and expand how many sites are served. 

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