November 2017

Fall is truly my favorite time of year. The past two months have been a period of very exciting growth for NMTS. Thanks to the incredible work of our talented staff, we’ve started several successful programs since September – and I’d like to take this opportunity to update you on what we’ve been doing!

We have started three new choirs in the past month. One is our annual Holiday Choir at McKinley. The other two are taking place at senior housing complexes in our community. Singing is a powerful way to bring people together. Participants in these new senior choirs are living on their own. Many of them are isolated and have difficulty getting out in the community. By bringing these free choirs to them we are helping to create a sense of belonging and purpose. They are meeting their neighbors, sharing memories, and having fun making music together.

Through a grant from the Nevada Arts Council, we have started a songwriting project at Warm Springs Correctional Center in Carson City. Arts programs have been shown to help inmates develop skills that can reduce their chances of re-offending. In this project, participants are turning their personal stories into songs that they will be performing. This is the first project of its kind in the Nevada corrections system, and we did face a bit of skepticism before we started! However, the project has exceeded all of our expectations. The inmates have written very powerful individual songs and have even collaborated on a group song. They are giving and receiving constructive feedback, collaborating, and sharing their emotions with each other. All of these are valuable skills that will increase their chances of building stronger social bonds when they are released from incarceration.

The Lullaby Project has been a fantastic collaboration with the Reno Philharmonic and Step2. It is coming to an end but we are already looking forward to the next one! Please see the section below for an update on this innovative project.

And last but not least, we are launching our new neurologic music therapy clinic, and we are accepting referrals now! This new clinic is located a couple of blocks away from our home at McKinley. We will be providing individualized clinical services to people with a variety of neurologic impairments. For more information about this new service, please scroll down and visit the clinic web page.

Believe it or not, these are just some of the new things we are up to. If you’d like to learn more about our current programs and future plans, I’d like to invite you to our next Basement Session on November 13th at noon. Please email for more information and to RSVP.

Thank you for all of your support. Together we are truly changing lives through music!


Tom Petty quote

Announcing our new clinic!

Note-Able Music Therapy Services is proud to announce the opening of our new neurologic music therapy clinic. Neurologic music therapy is an evidence-based treatment that addresses speech and language, movement, and cognitive capacities.

Neurologic music therapy is for people with:

  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Dementia
  • Autism
  • Stroke

While NMTS therapists have always worked with people with these diagnoses, neurologic music therapy is a distinct approach. It differs from traditional music therapy in that it treats music not as a social science model for well being, but as a neuroscience model, where music is a hard-wired brain language. Neurologic music therapy techniques are based on decades of research about how music is perceived in the brain and how it can be used to affect nonmusical brain function. Neurologic music therapy can produce incredible results and we are excited to bring this powerful modality to northern Nevada.

Our new clinic is located right around the corner from our home at McKinley – and we are accepting referrals now! Since neurologic music therapy is not yet covered by insurance in Nevada, we are maintaining our current low rates with available sliding fee discounts for this service. Please call 775-324-5521 or email for more information or to schedule an appointment with one of our neurologic music therapists.

Brain and music illustration

Project Updates – The Lullaby Project

This fall has been busy with new projects, with none more inspiring than The Lullaby Project, a collaboration with The Reno Philharmonic and Step2 Residential Treatment Center. Our music therapists have been working with mothers who are in treatment for addiction to write individualized songs for their children. We have been absolutely amazed by the vulnerability and intimacy that the women have shown. It is something that is out of their comfort zones and there was a lot of trepidation going into the project. In fact, almost all of them said that they were willing to write a lullaby only if someone else sang it…but every single woman who has made it through the project will be in the studio recording their own songs this coming Friday! Hesitation has been replaced with joy, pride, and an eagerness to share their songs with their children. We’ll share some of the songs and stories next month. Thank you to everyone who donated to this wonderful program!

Lullaby Project participants
A Step2 participant preparing her song with NMTS music therapist Jodi McLaren, accompanied by musicians from The Reno Philharmonic.
Susan Boskoff

Welcome Susan Boskoff!

We are thrilled to welcome Susan Boskoff as our newest member of the NMTS Advisory Board. Susan recently retired as chief executive of the Nevada Arts Council after nearly 25 years of leadership. Using the agency’s mission, “…supporting Nevada’s arts and culture sectors and broadening access to and public participation in the arts,” as the foundation of stewardship, she significantly expanded the Arts Council’s resources to bring artists and audiences together — animating communities and grassroots advocacy, advancing lifelong learning, promoting public/private partnerships, and growing economic diversification.

During her tenure, the majority of the agency’s programs were launched and stabilized, including Artist Fellowships, Poetry Out Loud, Nevada Touring Initiative/Traveling Exhibition Series, Nevada Circuit Riders, Office Exhibition Series, Nevada Heritage Award, and an annual conference, presently called Arts @ the Heart. Susan was recognized for her vision with the 2017 Nevada Arts & Humanities Award for Public Service.

A native of Maryland, Susan received her B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Communications Arts with an emphasis in television and film production. Before moving to Nevada, she was director of the Performing Arts Coalition in Salt Lake City, facilitated a capital campaign for the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center, and established Salt Lake County’s Public Art Program. Susan has served as a trustee on national and regional boards, including the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, Western Arts Alliance, Western States Arts Federation, and Utah Arts Advocates. She currently serves on the board of Truckee Meadows Tomorrow, the national advisory board for the Utah Repertory Dance Theatre, the community advisory board of the KNPB/PBS, and the Reno Arts Consortium. She continues work with the Nevada Public Works department on the Battleborn Memorial to Nevada’s Fallen Warriors.

As a consultant and speaker, Susan has collaborated with a broad spectrum of clients, including The Poetry Foundation, Writers at Work, Americans for the Arts, Nevada Museums Association, Black Rock Design Institute, USA Artists, and Alliance for Nevada Nonprofits. Her current portfolio of clients includes a regional ballet company and school, several independent artists, and both public and private public arts/cultural programs.

Fall Showcase

The Fall Showcase is just around the corner! This year the show will be at Cargo in the Whitey Peak Hotel, one of Reno’s coolest music venues. It’s so important for many of our participants to be able to perform on the big stage with the lights. And it’s extra incredible with all of their family, friends, and community members in the audience cheering them on!

Our classes have been working hard to put together a great show for you. Each class will perform several songs, and the evening will end with a fantastic performance (and dance party!) with The Note-Ables. It’s an event that cannot be replaced, full of fun, laughs, cheers, and the occasional tear.

Please get your tickets online and be ready for a great show!

Fall Showcase flier

Siren Song Masquerade Tickets Available NOW!

Siren Song Masquerade

Slip into the belly of a sunken ship and be enchanted by the siren’s song, where strange creatures and bubbling champagne await! The Siren Song Masquerade is Note-Able Music Therapy Services’ 14th annual gala. It will be the most spectacular event yet, as the Atlantis comes alive with mermaids, sea creatures and pirates. The evening includes dancing to the sounds of the Reno Jazz Orchestra and The Note-Ables, lavish desserts, flowing champagne, auctions, and surprise performances. The Siren Song Masquerade will be held on Saturday, February 10th, 2018 and tickets are now for sale! Individual tickets are $65 and VIP tables for 10 start at $1,000. By attending this event you will make a difference in our community while enjoying a truly magical evening.

There are still several sponsorship opportunities available, please visit the sponsor page or email for information about the benefits of sponsorship for you and your company!

It’s time to get excited!

Upcoming Events

Fall Showcase – Saturday, November 11th, 7pm (Cargo in Whitney Peak) Our participants are so excited to perform their next big show for you, The Fall Showcase. Our Exploring Music and dance classes, the Electronic Music Project, and The Note-Ables will all be featured on one of Reno’s hottest stages. Tickets are available now!

Basement Session – Monday, November 13th, 12pm (McKinley Arts and Culture Center) Would you like to get to know more about music therapy, adaptive music, and The Note-Ables? This lunch event is free to attend and is a small gathering, so there’s plenty of time to ask your questions. And The Note-Ables play! RSVP to Sarah Toney at

NMTS Holiday Choir Caroling at Nugget Crafts for Christmas – Saturday, November 25th 11am (Nugget Casino) Our Holiday Choir is performing mostly at private parties this year, so this is a wonderful way to see them shine out in the community and kick off the holiday season!

Note-Able Music Therapy Services Holiday Party! – Thursday, December 13th 3pm (McKinley Arts and Culture Center) Come celebrate the holiday with us! All of our families, participants, and supporters are welcome to join the festivities. Santa will be here for our participants and the kids. Please bring your favorite holiday treat to share.

Siren Song mermaid

October Thank Yous

Thank you to our October donors! Margaret and Ed Friedrichs, Marilyn and Paul Moon, The Life Change Center, Katie Coombs, Sandy Jacob, Susan Mazer and Dallas Smith, Scott Harrington, Kate and Jay Kirkpatrick, Mary Lee Fulkerson, Bob Fulkerson, Jeanine Mooers, Jaime Briscoe Collins, Theresa Grant

Thank you to our classroom and office volunteers!  Regina Adamoli, Sara Bolling, Sierra Fair, Jewelene Fritts, Mark Geeson, Eric Gieseke, Chris Keenan, Tonia Meyers, Marilyn Moon, Courtney Mayer, Nanette Mueller, Cindy Oesterle-Prescott, Jessica Patin, Taryn Perez, Gregory Raymond, Haley Vinson, Ken Vogel, and Doris Weber

Quote of the Month

Wish List

  • Art supplies – anything you’re not using, we’ll find a use for!
  • Greeting cards and thank you notes
  • 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

Dave Stockman – Treasurer
President – Stillwater Foundation

Sandy Jacob – Secretary

Dennis Doty – Director
Physical Therapist – HCR ManorCare 

John Firestone – Director
Executive Director – The Life Change Center

Theresa Grant – Director

Parent/Marketing Executive – Melaleuca

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.

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