Stephens, Margaret

I work in the Cancer Center at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon NH. When I am working in outpatient I am primarily playing in waiting rooms and try to individualize my music as much as possible. It is easy to observe how the harp music relaxes people but it also inspires conversations and activities. I offer my harp to people who are interested in trying it and give mini harp lessons when asked. I also have a Reverie Harp which people can play and I offer ‘musical massages’ (usually on their backs) with the Reverie Harp. Many patients have commented on how the vibrations can alleviate pain and nausea and can relax different parts of their bodies.

My inpatient sessions are with patients and families receiving cancer care, palliative care, intensive care. I use the harp (sound, music, rhythm) in different ways depending on the need or request that presents itself. Occasionally my harp work is in conjunction with the massage or Reiki practitioner. I offer music to the staff when the opportunity arises.

Inpatient Staff comment:
“We enjoy the harp music very much in 1 West.
It’s the best  part of working Fridays.  She really brings calm to the unit. Our patients love the harp music. So do we-the staff. And we appreciate every minute she is down here.”

I am part of the Arts Team from the Patient and Family Support Services. I have included a 4 min. interview about the program which aired on NHPR to give you more insight into our services.
http://www.nhpr.org/post/soothing-cancer-arts