Computational Music Therapy

Billie Sandak, Avi Mazor, Amichay Asis, Avi Gilboa, David Harel

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Free improvisation is a common technique in music therapy, used to express one’s ideas or feelings in the non-verbal language of music. More broadly, music therapy is used to induce therapeutic and psychosocial effects; i.e., to help alleviate symptoms in serious and chronic diseases, and to empower the wellbeing and quality of life for healthy individuals and for patients. However, much research is required in order to learn how music therapy operates and to enhance its effectivity. Here we utilize our broad computational paradigm, which enables the rigorous and quantitative tracking, analyzing and documenting of the underlying dynamic expressive processes. We adapt the method, which we developed for the art and music modalities, to music therapy and apply it in a real-world experimentation. We study expressive emergent behaviors of clients directed by a therapist in a succession of sessions aimed at developing and increasing their expressivity through free improvisations. We describe our empirical insights, and discuss their implications in therapy and in scientific research arenas.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMathematics and Computation in Music - 7th International Conference, MCM 2019, Proceedings
EditorsMariana Montiel, Francisco Gomez-Martin, Octavio A. Agustín-Aquino, M Montiel, F GomezMartin, OA AgustinAquino
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9783030213916, 978-3-030-21391-6
StatePublished - 2019
Event7th International Conference on Mathematics and Computation in Music, MCM 2019 - Madrid, Spain
Duration: 18 Jun 201921 Jun 2019

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume11502 LNAI


Conference7th International Conference on Mathematics and Computation in Music, MCM 2019


  • Arts therapies
  • Computational paradigm
  • Computer modeling
  • Music making
  • Music therapy

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science


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