A recent ABC News feature updated the public on the recovery of Gabby Giffords, the Arizona Representative who was shot in the head in January. The focus of the feature was, of course, Giffords herself and the remarkable progress she has made in a relatively short time. The supporting actor of the segment, though, was music therapy and its role in bringing language back into Giffords’ brain.
This seems like the most publicized use of music therapy that I can remember (please chime in if I’ve missed something), and I wonder whether it will result in a spike in enrollment in music therapy programs. These programs seemed the wave of the future in the mid-90s, but it seems academic funding has waned. Are there music therapists reading this who can chime in on the state of the discipline? Does the overwhelmingly positive publicity that comes from an uplifting story like Giffords’ recovery promise a future of more music therapists?