The Music Mothers Make – Dean de l’Etoile –  Takes The Stage

The Music Mothers Make – Dean de l’Etoile – Takes The Stage

By UM News

The Music Mothers Make – Dean de l’Etoile – Takes The Stage

By UM News
As the prestigious Music Therapy program at the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami celebrates a landmark 50th anniversary, Shannon K. de l’Etoile Associate Dean of Graduate Studies, Professor, Music Therapy, was recently asked to give a Cane Talks presentation to South Florida business leaders who serve on the UM Citizen’s Board.

Professor de l’Etoile’s talk centered on her innovative research with mothers and infants entitled, “The Music Mothers Make—The Importance of Singing to Infants.”

"My research with mothers and infants provides a basic foundation for future research and clinical work," states Dean de l’Etoile. "When mothers have postpartum depression, their singing to infants sounds different.  Compared with mothers who don’t have depression, their singing lacks a certain level of sensitivity in regard to tempo and tonality.  However, their infants still like it!  These results suggest that mothers with depression would most likely benefit from therapeutic support; learning how to best use their singing to promote infant development."
Dr. de l’Etoile’s research is but one example of the many exciting and innovative ways the Frost School looks at music.  In addition to elevating the artistry of performance, composition, conducting, production and more, as one might expect in a music school, the music therapy program is constantly striving to understand how music brings meaning to everyday life, and how music might benefit people who face challenging circumstances.
Citizens Board Member Eric T. Levin, president SeamLev Investments stated: "The mission of our Cane Talks is to explore the social, ecological, technological, creative, biological, and political ideas that are shaping our society and transforming our daily lives. Professor de l’Etoile’s presentation on her innovative research with mothers and infants was illuminating and brought to the forefront the extraordinary music therapy program available at the Frost School of Music and the importance of music in everyday life."


"Research plays a critical role in the music therapy profession," de lEtoile states.  “We’ve all had profound moments with music, and have experienced changes in emotion, energy, attention, etc.  Research helps to explain how the music works; how it creates these responses.  This scientific knowledge moves the discipline forward; helping music therapists promote lasting, functional changes for their clients."
The Frost School of Music’s Music Therapy program is considered one of the top-rated in the nation and provides four distinct degrees covering those at the undergraduate, masters and Ph.D. levels:  They include: Bachelor of Music Degree, Master of Music Degree in Music therapy with Undergraduate Equivalency, Master of Music Degree in Music Therapy, and Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Music Education with Music Therapy Emphasis. 
Marking the 50th anniversary of such an important and innovative program is one of the many reasons students choose to study at the Frost School of Music and are proud to call themselves #FrostBuilt!.  In honor of the occasion, the school will host an afternoon of talks and music on Oct. 5th at 1:00 p.m. in Clarke Recital Hall featuring:

  • Performances by Alpha Mu (the student music therapy organization) and the Sylvester Singers Survivorship Choir
  • Lectures on the history of the music therapy program at Frost
  • A series of Frost MTx talks from program alums on their clinical work and professional journeys
  • A panel discussion with current and former students about their time in the Frost music therapy program

To reserve your ticket, please click here.

View other 'Cane Talks here.