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Tower Seminar: Supporting Children Who Experience Trauma Through Music

February 28 at 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Presenters: James Burns, Hannah Healy, Sarah Alley

Chair: Professor Hilary Moss

This seminar will present three community engaged research projects by PhD students at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance. James Burns, Sarah Alley and Hannah Healy are all Music Therapists, who have established Music Therapy initiatives, for children in Ireland who experience trauma. Each is exploring the impact of music, and Music Therapy on the wellbeing and resilience of children facing extraordinary challenges.

James works with children with communication difficulties resulting from a traumatic brain injury. Sarah works with children who experience anxiety as a result of family and community trauma, and Hannah works with children who have experienced a significant loss, specifically focusing on the loss of a person due to imprisonment. This seminar will combine theory, research and real-life examples of how, when and where music can support children and overcome difficulties. Attendees will learn about Music Therapy and childhood mental health and will leave with an understanding of how these creative innovative practitioners are supporting children and their families in Ireland.

James Burns is a Music Therapist at Children’s Health Ireland at Temple Street. He is currently completing his PhD on Music Therapy and paediatric acquired communication impairments at the Irish World Academy.

Hannah Healy is a current PhD student at the University of Limerick, studying Music Therapy as an intervention for children who are experiencing grief. Hannah is focusing her work on how the significant loss of having a parent/sibling in prison can impact a child. Hannah is currently employed within the Irish Prison Service and runs a Music Therapy practice in Cork.

Sarah Alley is a PhD student at the Academy, focusing on the power of Music Therapy for child mental health, particularly anxiety in the school context. She is the Music Therapist working at Corpus Christi Primary School, Moyross.


February 28
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm


Theatre 2, Irish World Academy