Date of Award


Document Type


Copyright Status, No Creative Commons License

All Rights Reserved

Degree Name

Master of Science in Music Therapy


Music Therapy

First Advisor

Dr. Sangeeta Swamy


Intuition is a crucial facet of the creative process and influences the clinical pathways of music therapy treatment. This study sought to explore how music therapists with advanced training in clinical improvisation draw upon intuition while improvising with their clients. There is very little literature about intuition in music therapy improvisation, none of which specifically explores how intuition manifests musically. Through a phenomenological investigation, the lived experiences and musical processes of two clinical improvisers were examined. The research questions for this study were: How does intuition manifest musically while improvising? When is this intuitive information used? How is the informed music related to the client and their music? The themes that emerged were: relational aspects of intuition, elements of music, immediacy, and source of music. Intuition was found to manifest musically through a multitude of musical elements ranging from a tone to an entire musical theme and actualized immediately. The informed-music was repeatedly related to the therapists’ perceptions of clients, shared experiences, and the therapists’ musical background. An increased awareness of how intuition is perceived and utilized may prove beneficial for music therapy students, professionals, and educators in their continued development of musical-clinical resources

Related Pillar(s)


Included in

Music Therapy Commons