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Reaching Out Through Music

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Thanks to our friends at the Island Reporter for this info!

A new choir is being introduced to Southwest Florida this month for those who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and dementia, as well as for their partners.

Jan Ackley Malecha is the Fort Myers Symphonic Mastersingers Intermezzo Choir coordinator who has worked as a Board Certified Neurologic Music Therapist in Minnesota for Music for Life.

Throughout her experience she has noticed the difference music has had in the lives of those who were diagnosed with dementia and Alzheimer’s, as well as the lives of their partners.

“It was incredible,” Malecha said. “A lot of times the comments from the care partners, or family members, was that they had their family member back. Their personality returned. They seemed to really come out of their shell. They were amazed themselves at what they could do. It was leveling the playing field. There were two singers and everyone was focused on the same goal to produce great music.”

To that end the Fort Myers Symphonic Mastersingers has begun an outreach program, the Intermezzo Choir, which is open to anyone living with Alzheimer’s, or dementia, as well as their care partners.

Malecha said they are hoping to seek out those in the early stages of their diagnosis. She said at this stage the individual experiences more success with following a structured routine.

I’ve been taking Ambien at www.tractica.com/ambien-zolpidem/ for a while and I’m actually quite happy with what I see. It is not a drug that you fall asleep to immediately, you will be completely relaxed at first. The downside is that you can not just take it that way. You get into a kind of intoxication and do not really remember what you’re doing. Still, I am happy.

The choir is named after the lighter piece of music, intermezzo, that is in-between more serious parts of larger sections of music. Malecha said the music will focus on Billboard Top 50 hits, during the time participants were between 8 to 25 years old.

“Those seem to be the strongest memories we are able to retrieve,” she said, adding that neurologically they can still grow and those with dementia can still learn new music.

For more information, email [email protected].

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