F.I.M. Federazione Italiana Musicoterapeuti

Different syndromes

Age of development

Angelman’s syndrome, Rett’s, Wolf’s, Cornelia De Lange’s, Williams’s, fragile X syndrome, etc…the endless syndromes we do not know well, or at all, and which we get in contact with.


In presence of syndromes with different features, the common thing is that we interact with people. Every person (child, teenager, adult) shows with movements, gestures, intonation of voice, “how” he feels inside, “how” he relates with himself, “how” it is possible to act, to speak, etc. every syndrome is presented in different ways. Two children with the same syndrome can have similar features and subjective differences. The music therapist has to gather information about the features of every single syndrome through the reading of books, internet websites, and talks with specialists, to understand the disease in the best way possible. The hyper-tonicity which characterises the Angelman’s syndrome is different in every child. For this reason, in music therapy we go towards the person. Being able to seize the personal features is a task which requires time. As we go on, we notice that the child, apart from his syndrome, feels listened to, understood and does not feel the pressure of a performance. For this reason, he reacts committing himself in a personal way.
The music therapist’s task consists in interacting with the child so that he listens, and he wishes to be the protagonist of his actions, his developments and so that his attention is prolonged. The modifications of the muscular, energetic and respiratory tone are the conditions to be able to be attentive for a longer time. The more the child is attentive, the most he will be able to show his skills.

Scientific Aspects

Body Resonance, clinical improvisation at the piano and Circular Relationship are the basis to make tangible being listened to and appreciated.
The knowledge of the difficulties coming from a specific syndrome do not influence the quality of the interpersonal relationship that music therapist and co-therapist develop with the children and the parents. Together they discover the child’s capacities. The parent points out any new gesture or change occurring in the child. Then we go on leading and being led by the child, respecting his skills so that he can perform his potentiality.

Angelman’s Syndrome - Foto 1 - Foto 2
Through the “Body Resonance”, used with care, the child, manages to overcome her hypertension to communicate and to understand.

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Translations Chiara Meloni