Music Therapy Faculty

Donna Chadwick

Associate Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-3068

Peggy Ann Codding

Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-8678

"In music therapy, where the client is the center, people will come with disabilities, with emotional issues, pain of a physical or psychological nature, or cognitive disabilities, and the therapist has to be able to meet whatever comes. To be able to improvise is a critical skill, and not all programs teach that. To mold the method to the client is central to the music at Berklee, and to be able to do that therapeutically is critical. As a result, our students are leaving here able to go out and write their own ticket. The internship programs really want our students. It's live music; it's based on improvisation; it's adaptable; and they love that."

Suzanne Hanser | 617 747-2639

"These days there's a lot of attention to New Age philosophies and approaches to life, and drumming circles have become very popular. People get a lot out of that, and for some it's a spiritual experience. They think that's music therapy. But music therapy is scientific in addition to being an artistic endeavor. It's really a structured and formulaic approach to meeting individual needs. . . . Music has to come so naturally to the therapist that he or she can be totally with the client and tuned in to what he or she needs at the moment, totally empathizing and understanding not only what the person's saying, but what they're feeling."

Kathleen Howland

Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-2791

"I think there's no higher use of our musical talents than the opportunity to reach somebody across the bridge of pathology; to reach an Alzheimer's patient, to shape the life of a person with autism, to reach somebody who is afraid or in pain. . . . To be able to reach a fetus who's still in the womb is a tremendous example of the power of music. It's a higher purpose for our music-making than necessarily just gigs. I mean, I've been to concerts that have changed my life, concerts that have enriched my life tremendously. But to really be able to know how to wield and use that power for the higher good of humanity is a tremendous opportunity for us all."

Brian Jantz

Assistant Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-3069

"Berklee has a very unique music therapy program in that it is very music-centered, but it’s also very evidence-based. We have such a diverse faculty with diverse backgrounds and specialties, so it’s a very unique place to study, and I think there’s a certain creative energy in a Berklee classroom that you might not expect in a music therapy classroom. It’s there, even in the intro classes. I have the students writing songs about the material they’re studying in the textbook, and of course they write these amazing songs that could be stand-alone compositions. I’m not sure you could find that elsewhere." 

  • B.M., Berklee College of Music, Music Therapy
  • Guitarist
  • Former staff music therapist at the Community Music Center of Boston and Bournewood Psychiatric Hospital Rehabilitation Department
  • Former director of music therapy for All-Newton Music School and Brookline Music School
  • Former private consultant at Boston College Campus School for over five years
  • Directed and managed large residential group home in Watertown, MA
  • Featured in Fox News, the Boston Herald, and Boston Parents Paper for his unique clinical use of music 


Kimberly Khare

Assistant Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-8609

"Our program is music centered, focused on helping each student develop professionally as a musician as well as develop as a music therapist. We're also relationship centered and we're client centered. We make the focus of the training understanding how to develop an appropriate clinical relationship with the client. We're talking about the student understanding not only different diagnoses and populations, but understanding the person who's diagnosed with said conditions."

Chi Gook Kim

Assistant Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-6148

"I want students to be independent. In the past, if they had a song in their heads, they had to get assistance from a sighted person. But it takes a long time to dictate note by note, so the sighted people would fill in the gap. Now, they can have full control over what they write on the charts and record. So they can write for any professional writing gig or recording gig. They can be fully independent."

Michael Moniz

Associate Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-8472

"Not everyone is structured to be a professional musician, but there are a lot of other careers that you can get involved with in music. There's business, recording, and teaching, and you can still play locally in all kinds of groups and get your musical satisfaction. So be open to those possibilities. It's a tough world out there, and there are a lot of people who don't make it at that level, but you can still continue to enjoy music, to contribute, and to pass it on to the next generation."

Karen Wacks

Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-8474

"Any musician at Berklee—whether you're a therapist, performer, or educator—can learn to use their music for compassion. It can be customized for a child in a hospital, or it can be broader, where you're working with thousands of people at a concert. But how can you begin to really use your music to think of another person, to step outside of your own personal needs and issues, to be there? It just takes a little bit of awareness. What's different about what we do is that we learn to customize our music to meet the needs of an individual or a group, but anybody can get it. It's about consciously thinking about another person and how you can help."

Julie Buras Zigo

Assistant Professor, Music Therapy | 617 747-8428

"At Berklee, the Music Therapy Department has developed a strong sense of community among the students and the faculty. Our students really support each other. To be successful, music therapy majors need to be totally committed to their musical development and their academic work. Over four semesters, music therapy majors have the opportunity to gain practical experience in community-based settings. Students work alongside a music therapist in special education, in nursing homes, and with clients in psychiatric and medical settings. In these practicum placements, students take beginning steps in their professional development."