Stories entertain. They also illuminate truths. These stories recount how music brought peace, or joy, or sleep -- all of which are critical to healing. Hear people tell you, in their own voices, the positive impact that high-quality, live music had on their healing. We include stories from staff, patients and our own Muses.

Staff Stories

"I'm so busy. I'm glad you're here. It's always relaxing when you play."

Receptionist, Infusion Suite
UCSF Mount Zion
January 2019

"Today was perfect. There were patients and staff who stopped by for a calming moment. Compliments are still coming in. I can’t thank all of you enough for the joy brought to our facility today." 

Volunteer Program Coordinator
Contra Costa Regional Hospital
March 2019

"Your music just transforms the whole place."

Palliative Care Nurse
George Mark Children's House
April 2019


Patient Stories

"My mom was in distress and we thought she was very close to death. We were so upset. Then you came. The nurse said my mother's blood pressure dropped back into the calm zone while you played the harp. I wish you could stay longer.."

Patient's daughter
ICU, Kaiser San Francisco
October 2015
"Something about harp is very connected to the heart. This kind of healing is specific to harps. Maybe how it resonates, and the vibrations go right into your body, and you hold it next to your heart so it goes in."
UCSF Mission Bay
September 2018

"Look, that's a harp only like you see in movies!" "I like it! It sounds like dolphins."
overheard conversation between a mother and young daughter
Infusion Suite, UCSF Mount Zion
January 2019

Muse Stories

"There is a challenge in developing the flexibility needed for this work: each time being ready for a different mood of the room, of the level of stress or relaxation, choosing where to place oneself (literally or figuratively), what kind of music to play at any given moment, trying to figure out how to be present but not in the way, and how to facilitate something that could resemble a healing atmosphere."

Shira Kammen

The mom of a young male patient fell asleep waiting for him. He was particularly delighted to discover her asleep. He says the music is calming and trance-like and profoundly stabilizing, and that he is convinced of the healing effects of listening to live music.

We talk more about music and life. He has the most wonderful laugh and seems to hold a positive charge even after a difficult appointment. "Now play something calming to make me sleep, too." he requests. I feel I am the one being gifted by his presence.

Patrice Haan