What is Music Therapy?

What is Music Therapy?

What is Music Therapy?

Music therapy is an evidence-based therapy provided by university-trained allied health professionals (known as Registered Music Therapists).

Music therapy uses musical activities to address a range of goals to improve physical, psychological, social and emotional wellbeing. Each music therapy session could look different, as music therapists select the right musical activities to match your needs and goals (see below for some examples).

Music therapy is regulated by the Australian Music Therapy Association and recognised by the NDIS.

How can music therapy help?

Music therapy interacts with our brains and bodies, drawing on neuroscience and psychosocial research to support people’s mood, energy, speech, memory, movement and experiences of pain.

There is a significant amount of research demonstrating music therapy’s effectiveness for supporting a range of needs including dementia, mental health, chronic pain, autism and more.

Learn more about who music therapy is for and how it can help in my blog post.

A child plays a ukulele in a music therapy session in Melbourne

What happens in a music therapy session?

Each session will look different depending on your needs and goals at the time. Once we determine your goals for the session, you'll be supported to explore and process these through some of the approaches listed below. We'll reflect on what comes up through these experiences, and work together to integrate your experiences to support your daily life.

You might choose to participate in:


Playing instruments

Songwriting & making beats

Mindful listening

Song discussion & lyric analysis

Music-assisted counselling

Playlist creation

Music & video recording

Guided relaxation

Music & imagery experiences

Music & movement experiences

Psycho-education & skills development

To find out more about who music therapy is for and what it’s like, take a look at my blog post.

My approach to music therapy

Mind Body Music Therapy is dedicated to providing person-centred, creative music therapy and counselling services to support people to live well and thrive to the best of their abilities.

Based on the latest research, I take a holistic approach to wellbeing, supporting your psychological, social, emotional and physical health through music and somatic counselling approaches.

Mind Body Music Therapy is directed by me, Kate McMahon. It captures the vision and approach I bring to my work, acknowledging the importance of the mind-body connection and the power of music to support this.

Find out more about me and how I work.

Picture of Dr Kate McMahon, a Music therapist in Melbourne. Kate has long red hair and a blue jumper. She is smiling softly with her mouth closed.

Curious to find out more?