The Healing Power of Music

SarahRose Black is an accredited music therapist who works with patients at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and the Kensington Hospice in a one-on-one therapeutic relationship to help them cope with cancer and journey through cancer treatment.

She has witnessed the power of music to heal, to calm and to reduce anxiety in people who are dealing with even the worst types of cancer.  She begins her time with a patient learning about the types of music that they enjoy, the kinds of instruments they like and about how they like to experience music—listening, playing, composing.  “Each of my visits with a patient is a unique and special experience,” says SarahRose. 

“Many patients are happy just to listen to me play, while others want to create the music themselves.  I’m grateful that I can use the healing power of music to support cancer patients regardless of their age or stage of treatment.”

The Music Therapy Program is offered by the Department of Psychosocial and Palliative Care.  This department has developed many programs to support patients and their families manage the side effects of cancer and cancer treatment—both physical and emotional—and minimizing the suffering when the cancer can no longer be controlled.