Self-expression is a vital part of living our most full lives, no matter our age or abilities. Each of us wants to express ourselves and connect with others. Music is a powerful and immediate means of doing this through singing, dance, playing instruments or even listening. Unfortunately, many of our participants have been told in one way or another that they have no talent and nothing to give. Our upcoming Spring Recital (May 1st) is an incredible demonstration of how false this statement is. Each performance at the recital is a powerful reminder that all of us bring something to this world that no one else brings – and that we all deserve to be heard and celebrated.

We welcome you to be part of the Spring Recital and celebrate the incredible and diverse talents of our participants. We also welcome you to deepen your own expression. You don’t have to be Yo-Yo Ma to lighten up the world with your music. You, as you are and doing what you are doing, are enough and we’d all benefit from experiencing more of what you have to give.

I hope this note finds you well and that you can participate in what’s coming up at NMTS!


Sarah Toney
Development Director

NMTS Moments with Jodi

In the fall, I started working with a man who experienced emotional outbursts at home and battled with a lot of difficult feelings. He enjoyed writing poetry at home but rarely had the opportunity to share it with others. When he first started coming to music therapy, we explored ways for him to express his emotions in a healthy way.We played how different emotions sounded on the drums, and then practice modulating from one emotion to another, using sound. Eventually, we explored positive emotions through dance such as freedom, love, joy, and connection.

We also began writing songs. He has a plethora of song ideas and poems that seem to flow right out of him, but he says he has trouble organizing the thoughts and putting all of the pieces together. Together we’ve developed a unique method of songwriting and he now has completed 3 original songs.

Attending music therapy is his favorite part of the week. He used to come to sessions overwhelmed with sadness and anger. Now, he enters the room with his hands up high and says, “I’m on top of the world today!” Not only has music helped him to express himself, but the fact that he can do this in a supportive, safe environment and share his expression with others brings him joy. He’s looking forward to performing at the Spring Recital on May 1st.

Jodi playing guitar

Music Therapy Perspectives

Did you know that Jodi is going to be teaching a Songwriting Basics class through Truckee Meadows Community College? Registration for this five-week class is open now! Follow this link for additional information and to register!

In honor of our new class, we wanted to share an article recently published in The Kansas City Star, which celebrates the way Hip-hop helps heal childhood trauma in recording studio project. For at-risk youth, finding a safe and healthy outlet of writing and rapping is something they can do and feel proud of.  The founder of the hip-hop program shares: “I wanted to show, especially the little kids, that there’s more to rap than just rapping,” he says. “When you rap, you can get all of your emotions out. Be free. You can do whatever you want.”

The self expression that occurs through rapping is a form of emotional release, letting go any difficult and painful emotions in an acceptable way. Many difficult traumatic life situations these students were facing came through in their raps in a way that was empowering. Music therapist Lauren Anderson says, “Music has always been there. Even though it doesn’t clothe us, feed us or pay our bills. But in the sense of what we need, music does express things we can’t do when we’re just talking.”

Special Events

Fire it Up! Morning Dance Party – April 15th 8 am at McKinley Arts and Culture Center (basement – west side)

Come dance with us and our facilitator Laurie Martin. Laurie leads us through a wild mixture of beats to wake our bodies up from the inside out! This group is about expressing and moving our bodies in ways that feel good, instead of dancing in just the right way. It’s all about what you wanna do. Free with suggested $5 donation.

Volunteer and Donor Appreciation Brunch – April 16th 11am at McKinley Arts and Culture Center

Once a year, we gather to say an extra thank you and celebrate all that’s been done in the year. We’ll provide yummy food, honor our  Volunteer and Supporter of the year, and have some fun with a performance by The Note-Ables! RSVP to mail@note-ables.org or call 324-5521 by April 8th.

April Basement Session – April 18th 12:00 noon at McKinley Arts and Culture Center

Would you like to learn more about Note-Ables and what we do? You are invited to attend one of our informational lunches that introduce music therapy and the power of music to transform people’s lives. RSVPs are required to attend this free lunch. Email Sarah at sarahtoney@note-ables.org or call 324-5521.

Spring Forward for Autism Walk – April 24th 

We’ll be doing outreach at the Justin Hope Spring Forward for Autism Walk again this year. Come see us if you’re there! If you’re interested in participating and supporting people with autism in our community, please check out their site for more information.

Walk to Defeat ALS – April 30th

We’ll be doing outreach at the Walk to Defeat ALS event, as well. We’ve never reached out directly to people with ALS and their families and caregivers and are looking forward to learning how we can best be of service. If you’re interested in the ALS walk, here’s more information.

Spring Recital – May 1st 2 pm at McKinley Arts and Culture Center

Our participants have been working on their performances and would be thrilled to have you in the audience! Come one, come all and support the efforts of our participants. The recital is free and open to everyone who would like to attend.

Best of Facebook

This month, we were honored to be featured in Arteffects, a new program featured on our local PBS station KNPB. It is a wonderful show. They did a great job telling our story and got some really nice footage of of our participants. Our part of the show begins around the 20 minute mark.

Welcome, Marilyn!

Marilyn Moon is the newest member of the NMTS Board of Directors. She has been a volunteer since 2014 and she loves working with NMTS due to her passion for music and dance.

“I believe that by using music and dance as a vehicle to assist in the communication of feelings, emotions and thoughts, we can provide a way to add value and understanding to peoples lives. There are many people that do not have the ability to communicate effectively when limited to using only the spoken or written word. I want to be available for those people. I am one of those people. I have felt from the beginning that the community of Note-Able Music Therapy Services is a great fit for me, my hopes, and desires. I am so fortunate to have discovered, and have the ability to be involved in this organization!”

Even before joining the board in March, Marilyn expanded her involvement with NMTS by helping with office work, being part of the Evening of Romance committee, and even attending our monthly Fire It Up! morning dance parties. And she continues to volunteer for the dance classes that started it all.

Next time you see Marilyn at on of our performances or events, make sure you say hi and introduce yourself. She would love the opportunity to get to know you better!

March Thank Yous!

We are thrilled to announce a that the Stillwater Foundation matched our Winter Campaign donations with an additional grant of $25,000. This money is so important in expanding our programming at McKinley Arts Center to reach more people in our community.

Thank you to our classroom and office volunteers –
Mark Geeson, Tia Henderson, Marilyn Moon, Cindy Oesterle-Prescott, Mary Schoen, Shannon Halliwell, and Elizabeth Andersen

As always, thank you to our Endowment Founding Circle!

The Note-Able Music Therapy Services endowment fund is managed by the Community Foundation of Western Nevada. By contributing to the fund, you will guarantee that children and adults – no matter their age or ability – will always have a place where they can learn, grow, and experience a community that is connected through the love of music. Please call or email us for more information about how you can contribute to the legacy of NMTS.

Music Quote of the Month

Wish List

  • Paper shredder and paper cutter!
  • Office and art supplies
  • iTunes gift cards
  • Disposable food service goods, such as paper plates, cutlery, cups and napkins
  • Postage stamps

Board of Directors

Kate Kirkpatrick – President
Director of Public Information, Marketing & Communications, Truckee Meadows Community College

Charles Kazemi – Treasurer
Owner – Make Your Momentum

Jim Robertson – Secretary
Social Worker – Gentiva Hospice

John Firestone – Director
Executive Director – The Life Change Center

Dave Stockman – Director
President – Stillwater Foundation

Marilyn Moon – Director

Give the gift of music!

Your donations provide for our low cost and adjustable-rate fees for classes, workshops, music therapy and music lessons! Every dollar donated helps people of all abilities to continue to have access to music therapy and programs.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This