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Community Drum Circle Offers a Unique Approach to Personal Health

Duquesne University’s Mary Pappert School of Music will host a series of three free Community Drum Circles on Jan. 26, Feb. 2 and Feb. 9, from 7 to 9 p.m. in Room 322 of the music school. The drumming circles are open to the public and facilitated by the Music Therapy Department.

“Drumming offers a holistic approach to therapy,” explained Sister Donna Marie Beck, Ph.D., director of music therapy. “It is a metaphysical experience that livens the mind, body and spirit, and is a fun way to reduce stress.”

Community Drum Circle participants will have the chance to enjoy the benefits of drumming, guided by certified music therapists. No previous experience is needed and drums, such as bongos and djembes, will be provided or participants may bring their own.

Research shows that people of all age groups benefit from music therapy. People with autism, visual, motor, emotional, hearing or cognitive disabilities or high stress levels may experience positive changes through drumming. The Music Therapy Department works with all ages, including special-needs children and those with autism, through programs in schools such as the Watson Institute Edgewood, Pathfinder School and the Western Pennsylvania School for the Blind. Another program involves senior citizens at the Fair Oaks Assisted Living Residence. Drumming has even been employed as a team-building exercise and a stress-reduction tool in the corporate environment.

The department facilitates unique programs at the Allegheny County Jail; Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh; and Magee-Women's Hospital, where volunteers use guitars and other soothing instruments to stimulate neurological development in premature infants.

For more information on the Community Drum Circle and music therapy activities, contact Beck at 412.396.6086.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.