"My Voice is Who I Am" - Vocal Improvisation Group Work with Healthy Community-Dwelling Older Adults

Aviya Riabzev, Ayelet Dassa, Ehud Bodner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Vocal improvisation is known as beneficial in promoting well-being, yet not much is known about using vocal improvisation with healthy older adults. While the emphasis in music therapy on studying interventions with clinical populations of older adults is important, the challenges and stressors facing healthy older adults require more investigation. Methods: This qualitative study analyzed the experiences of 54 older adults, ranging between 60 and 93 years (M=71.07), who participated in 12 weekly vocal improvisation group meetings that incorporated various voice improvisation techniques. Data was gathered using qualitative semi-structured group interviews with 12 focus groups (pre- and post-intervention). Results: A qualitative content analysis revealed that the vocal improvisations created the sense of an open space where participants could express and explore their own voices. The intervention has changed their attitudes regarding their own voices and led to meaningful personal experiences and new self-discoveries. The participants described experiencing a significant emotional process during the group work and reported experiencing self-exploration, and improvements in their self-beliefs, attitudes regarding their own voices, and their well-being. Conclusions: Vocal improvisation group intervention was experienced as beneficial for the well-being of healthy community-dwelling older adults.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages15
JournalVoices: A World Forum for Music Therapy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2022


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