100 to attend workshop on music therapy

Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah and the participants of the music talent development programme in a photo call after the certificate presentation ceremony.

KUCHING: A series of workshop on ‘Music as an Effective Form of Therapy’ will be organised here for students and the general public.

Organised by the Maestro Music School in collaboration with Boulevard Shopping Mall and the Rotaract Club of Segi College, Sarawak, 100 students from selected schools, working adults and shoppers at Boulevard Shopping Mall will be participating.

The charity workshop will be held from Dec 5 to 9. Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth, and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah had earlier officiated the workshop’s opening ceremony on Nov 26, and presented certificates of participation to those who participated in the Maestro’s musical talent development programmes for youths sponsored by his ministry.

He noted in his speech that music therapy could be applied to address the physical, emotional, cognitive and social needs of a group or individual.

“It employs a variety of activities such as listening to melodies, playing an instrument, drumming, writing songs, and guided imagery.

“Individuals, regardless of age and ability, can benefit from music,” he said. Abdul Karim said apart from diverting the minds of the youths away from undesirable activities such as substance abuse, music could be a useful tool to de-stress.

He also believed that music is a good form of therapy for the young and old. On the upcoming workshop, Maestro Music director Jennifer Eng said its aim was to create awareness of the importance of music as a form of therapy and she encouraged the youths to take an interest in music.

“As some of us might know, music therapy is used for many different issues, especially to manage stress.
“It has been proven to help treat depression and anxiety, promote wellness, enhance memory and improve communication,” she said.

Quoting a 2009 study, Eng said the children who participated in the study experienced hour-long sessions of music therapy once a week, and their conduct was monitored against a checklist of target behaviour like restlessness, aggression and noisiness.

“More than half the group improved by one or two points on the scale after the music therapy sessions,” she added.

On her school, she said it was founded in Sibu in 1986. She brought her brand of music to Miri in 1997 before finally deciding to set up a school in Kuching in 2009.

The charity music therapy workshop at the Boulevard Shopping Mall on Dec 5 and 6 will be for pupils aged 10 years and above. The sessions start at 1pm and will last till 5pm.

The sessions for shoppers from Dec 7-9 will be from 12 noon to 8.30pm daily.
Those interested to know more about the workshop can contact Eng (012-8750880) or Chin (016-8699900).

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