ABOUT

Our Team

Our Mission

The mission of Music Therapy Services, LLC – Cincinnati is to provide exceptional music therapy services to assist clients in accessing their potential through music.

Music Therapy Services, LLC uses person-centered, collaborative, and strength-based approaches to address the needs of the whole individual, and strives to promote the field of music therapy through advocacy, research, and education.

Our Philosophy

Music Therapy Services, LLC – Cincinnati upholds the inherent dignity and worth of every person.

Our music therapists focus on the strengths of the individual and take a collaborative approach in our treatment to help clients access their potential within a musical relationship. Music therapy involves collaborative music experiences to facilitate changes which are non-musical or musical in nature.

Music therapy sessions are based on individual assessment, treatment planning, and ongoing evaluation. The music therapist functions as part of the interdisciplinary team to support and foster a continuum of care. You can learn more about music therapy here.

Meet our

BOARD-CERTIFIED MUSIC THERAPISTS

Megan Shelley, MT-BC, Owner of Music Therapy Services Cincinnati

Megan Shelley

she/her

DIRECTOR

I believe in the inherent power of music to support, connect, and foster transformative growth in an individual. While disconnection, isolation, and trauma leave us feeling drained or diminished in our ability to care and support ourselves, music therapy can provide a dynamic opportunity to cultivate creativity and connect with ourselves and others on a deeper level. My approach to music therapy is from a person-centered, trauma-informed orientation and includes aspects of psychodynamic and transpersonal perspectives; meaning I take a collaborative approach to treatment, support the individual, and provide space for expressive and receptive symbolic uses of music that may create connections to experiences greater than ourselves.

I first arrived at my training in music therapy after playing the piano for a group of residents in a skilled nursing facility. I noticed a complete change in the energy and engagement of the residents and had to learn more. I went on to receive a Bachelor of Music in Music Therapy from the University of Dayton and a Master of Arts in Music Therapy from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College. Because of my interest in the symbolic use of music and music psychotherapy approaches, I am currently continuing advanced training in the Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music (GIM) and Analytical Music Therapy (AMT). I have supervised music therapy students and interns as a practicum site and university-affiliated internship, and have served as an adjunct professor at the University of Dayton teaching functional piano skills for music therapy students.

I have several years of experience in addiction recovery, adolescent and adult mental health, and hospice and end of life care. In addition to seeing clients in our clinic, I have had the privilege of providing services for organizations which include Ridge Ohio, REM Seeds of Change, HOPE for Children and Families, Queen City Hospice, St. Elizabeth Hospice, The Sisters of the Good Shepherd, Lighthouse Youth Services, and Clermont County Public Library. I am an active member of the American Music Therapy Association, the Association of Ohio Music Therapists, and have served as Secretary for the Great Lakes Region of the American Music Therapy Association. In my free time I enjoy singing and playing keys in a classic rock cover band, biking, hiking, snorkeling, spending time in nature, and taking some quiet time to meditate and practice reiki. I would love to foster a creative space for you on your journey to deepen your relationship with yourself and those around you in body, mind, and spirit.

Publications

  • Shelley, M., Kowski, J., Goldberg, F. S. (2021). Three roads diverged: Transformative self-experience in AMT and GIM. Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, 30(3), 289-308. doi: 10.1080/08098131.2021.1903976.
  • Brewer, M. (2017). Development of professional identity in music therapy: Interviews with influential voices. (Unpublished master’s thesis). Saint Mary of the Woods College, Saint Mary of the Woods, IN.
  • McHugh, L., Gardstrom, S., Hiller, J., Brewer, M., Diestelkamp, W. (2012). The effect of pre-meal, recreative music therapy on the nutritional intake of residents with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias: A pilot study. Music Therapy Perspectives, 30, 32-42.

Presentations

  • Everybody Hurts: Using Music Therapy for De-escalating Patients in In-Patient Mental Health. Co-presenter at National Conference of the American Music Therapy Association, Minneapolis, MN. November 2019.
  • Music Therapy in Private Practice. University of Dayton Music Therapy Professional Development Seminar, Dayton, OH. November 2017.
  • Music Therapy Services for Your Community. Clermont County Public Library 2017 Staff Development Day, Batavia, OH. October 2017.
  • Music Therapy in Adolescent Mental Health. HOPE for Children and Families and Family Access to Integrated Recovery: A Program of Central Clinic, Cincinnati, OH. September 2017.
  • Perinatal Music Therapy. St. Elizabeth Hospital Maternal Health Management Team, Edgewood, KY. August 2017.
  • Music Therapy in Private Practice. University of Dayton Music Therapy Professional Development Seminar, Dayton, OH. October 2014.
  • Music Therapy and Parkinson’s Disease. Co-presenter, Tri-State Chapter Parkinson’s Wellness Meeting, Edgewood, KY. September 2013.
  • The Effect of Pre-Meal, Vocal Recreative Music Therapy on the Nutritional Intake of Residents with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias: A pilot study. Co-presenter at Annual Conference of the Association of Ohio Music Therapists, Akron, OH. October 2011.
  • Clinically Relevant Research: Music Therapy and Nutritional Intake of Individuals with Dementia. Co-presenter at World Congress of Music Therapy, Seoul, Korea, July 2011.

Sydney Baytos

she/her

Music has always been a huge part of my life; I started singing around the house as toddler, learned violin in grade school, and started taking guitar lessons shortly after. These little moments and decisions in my life added up to a love for music that has fostered connections and shaped who I am. I’m a songwriter at heart, I have always used music to express feelings that otherwise couldn’t be conveyed. I was writing songs at 8 years old, singing them for anyone who would listen. Then music therapy seemingly fell into my lap. A music therapist presented at my high school and I didn’t think much of it at the time. Both my choir director, and my orchestra director came up to me after their class period and said, “Sydney, you should really check this out”. As a teen with a lack of direction, I took their advice and learned about music therapy and fell in love. In my free time, I bake and I make music! In the past I’ve written jingles for podcasts for the Dayton Writers Movement, recorded and released original music, and performed with the Sunday Service Choir with Kanye West.

In 2021, I graduated from the University of Dayton receiving my Bachelor’s degree in music therapy. I became a board certified music therapist following the completion of a 6 month internship at New Avenues to Independence, a residential facility for adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities in Cleveland , OH. I have clinical experience working with adolescence with complex traumas, adolescence and adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, and older adults with dementia. I love working with children to reach developmental goals. Music is the perfect medium for a child to explore language, communication and to encourage self-expression. My personal approach to therapy is eclectic, which means I shift theoretical perspectives based off of the clients immediate needs and what would most benefit them. I want to give all of my clients a safe space to explore their emotions, and to optimize their physical and mental well-being. I would love to share a musical connection with you, and give you the tools you need to process and develop strategies to optimize your health.

Josiah Doron

he/his

Music has played a central role in my life ever since my father (a music teacher) began recording my vocalizations and playing them back for me at age two. I started playing instruments soon after and some of my earliest memories are with my father sitting on the piano bench. As a teenager, I found both a great motivating force and a graceful refuge in the spaces between resonating strings, keys, vocal cords, and drumheads. I also recognize that many of my most meaningful relationships have been formed in, around, and through music.

I received my Bachelor of Science in Music Therapy from Indiana University in 2021 and became a board-certified music therapist following a six-month internship at Springfield Hospital Center, a psychiatric hospital in Sykesville, MD. I also have experience working with children, adolescents, and young adults on the Autism Spectrum. Prior to my music therapy training, I volunteered and interned at The Power House Youth Center in New Haven, IN. In my free time, I enjoy hiking, reading, spending time with family and friends, and swapping tunes with my best friend. I approach therapy from an existential-humanist perspective, meaning that I view therapy as a co-creative process wherein I encourage my clients to be their authentic selves while helping them to identify and create meaning in their lives. I also take a music-centered approach because I believe in the inherent, healing power of music to connect us with ourselves, others, and experiences that are beyond words. I would love to get to know you and explore how music can help in your movement towards health and wellbeing.

Presentations
Mindfulness for Individuals in In-Patient Mental Health and Mental Health Professionals. Presenter at Springfield Hospital Center, Sykesville, MD, 6/2021.

Tesla Hazel

she/her

When I was in elementary school, my grandparents made the decision to pay for music lessons for all of their grandchildren. Being around the age of nine, I decided to learn how to play the flute because it was “pretty.” Since then, I have fallen completely in love with music and how it can positively affect individuals in a variety of ways. Knowing how music has helped me throughout my life truly created my passion to use music therapy as a way to help the people I have the opportunity to serve. When practicing, I take an eclectic approach to music therapy- I believe that the best way for me to serve the patients or clients I am working with is to use the approach best fit for the individual. Therefore, I believe that sessions can incorporate varied approaches to help shape the session and meet the specific needs of each person.

I received my Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Therapy from Indiana Wesleyan University and became a board-certified music therapist in 2021. I have also completed additional training through Florida State University and am certified in NICU music therapy. Before becoming board-certified, I completed a six-month internship at Norton Healthcare in Louisville, Kentucky. While an intern, I had the opportunity to provide music therapy for a wide variety of populations within the medical setting including palliative care, pediatric and adult psychiatrics, pediatric and adult oncology, NICU, and those with developmental disabilities.

In my free time, I love reading, baking, playing disk golf with my husband, spoiling my pet cat, and spending time with my family. I would love to provide a safe space for you to discover how music can meet your individual needs and promote mental and physical well-being.

Michaela Miller

she/her

From the time I was a little girl, I was constantly singing and improvising songs. My grandmother frequently tells me the story of me singing all the nursery rhymes I had learned in daycare as she drove me home. I became involved in musical theatre and choir when I was ten and fell in love with how the power of music affects our emotions. I learned about music therapy when my grandmother’s friend was in hospice care and visited by a music therapist. Enchanted by how music engaged my grandmother’s friend and improved her quality of life during her dying process, I decided I wanted to be a music therapist.

I received my bachelor’s degree in music therapy with a minor in Spanish from the University of Dayton in May 2022. I graduated magna cum laude and emphasized in voice throughout my music therapy studies. I was in the University of Dayton Honors Program and finished my honors thesis, “Making Culture-Centered Music Therapists: Resources for Working with Latinx Young Adults” in May 2021. My thesis consisted of cultural considerations for working with Latinx clients and included a literature review, hypothetical case studies with examples of music therapy experiences, information drawn from interviewees in Latinx communities, and musical resources. I completed my six-month music therapy internship in April 2022 at Park Nicollet Health Services in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where I worked with adults in oncology, hospice, Parkinson’s rehabilitation, inpatient medical care, and children in bereavement.

I have a passion for working in hospice care, bereavement, and mental health. I specialize in working with Latinx immigrants and LGBTQ+ individuals. Hablo español y puedo proveer servicios de musicoterapia en español.

I work from a humanistic, psychodynamic, feminist, and music-centered framework. I meet clients where they are and focus on using music as the main medium for change. I provide neurodiversity-affirming and trauma-informed care. I aim to provide the best services to improve your quality of life and increase your overall wellbeing.

Awards and Presentations

Children’s Tasks of Grieving: A Growing Through Grief Case Study, Park Nicollet Health Services
Presented to staff music therapists and interns about my experience facilitating a music therapy bereavement group and how music therapy can move children through tasks of grieving for completion of my internship project.

Thayer Gaston Research Competition Award, American Music Therapy Association
Awarded in October 2021 by the American Music Therapy Association to an undergraduate studentʼs submission of a paper relevant to the music therapy profession. Submitted an adapted version of thesis.

Presenter, Great Lakes Regional Conference, American Music Therapy Association
Presented on theories and models of music therapy work with Latinx immigrants in a MTx session at the Great Lakes Regional (GLR) Music Therapy Conference.

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