Bank supports Vineyard Vibes outreach

Bobby Sanabria and Ascension. Photo courtesy of Vineyard Vibes
Hear Bobby Sanabria and Ascension on Friday evening. Salsa dance lessons, included with admission, will help you keep the beat. Photos courtesy of Vineyard Vibes

Posted July 20, 2006

The Martha's Vineyard Co-operative Bank's sponsorship of the upcoming Vineyard Vibes music festival will help provide funding for a music therapy program on the Island. The yearly event showcases the talents of Berklee College of Music alumni, faculty, and students. Vineyard Vibes holds its sixth annual program here July 28 through 30, featuring Bobby Sanabria & Ascension, Jennifer Holliday, and The Gospel Explosion.

Each year Vineyard Vibes raises money to create a community outreach program on the Vineyard involving music education. This year, money will be set aside to fund a music-based stress reduction program, provided by representatives of Berklee's Music Therapy Department, to various Island non-profit health-care organizations at a time of year when the need is greatest. Emphasis will be placed on stress relief for staff and patients of various facilities.

Berklee music therapy graduates and students will visit three Island facilities later this year to offer these stress reduction workshops. Not only will the college be providing a valuable service to people in need through its graduates, but students will also gain hands-on experience by working with patients on the Vineyard.

Jennifer Holliday. Photo courtesy of Vineyard Vibes
Saturday's Motown concert will feature Jennifer Holliday.

Co-operative Bank President Richard Leonard is enthusiastic and appreciates the opportunity to sponsor this outreach effort. "I am especially gratified to learn of the department's intention to visit multiple locations and organizations so that the help will be spread farther throughout the community," Mr. Leonard said.

Berklee's Music Therapy Department was founded in 1996. The department offers the only undergraduate music therapy program in the Boston area, and is one of the largest undergraduate programs in the U.S., with nearly 100 students enrolled. The curriculum is taught by six professors, five of whom are board-certified music therapists. Program founder Dr. Suzanne Hanser, a nationally recognized music therapist who has won numerous awards for her research, is one of the leading advocates of furthering the profession by providing therapists with evidence-based data on the effects of music therapy.

Said Dr. Hanser, "We are proud to offer the expertise of our faculty, graduates, and students to demonstrate a few techniques that can help people cope with everyday stress and strain. We hope to offer residents of Martha's Vineyard a chance to see music therapy in action."

Vineyard Vibes '06 Schedule

Bobby Sanabria and Ascension, Friday, July 28, 8 pm, at Outerland, Airport Road, Edgartown. Doors open at 7 pm. Tickets are $24.

Motown Singers Showcase featuring Jennifer Holliday, Saturday, July 29, 8:30 pm, at Outerland, Airport Road, Edgartown. Doors open at 8:30 pm. Tickets are $28.

The Gospel Explosion, with special guest Jennifer Holliday, featuring Dennis Montgomery III, Sunday, July 30, 7:30 pm, at the Old Whaling Church, Main Street, Edgartown. Tickets are $24.

Vineyard Vibes is brought to the Island by Berklee College of Music through sponsorship support from The Martha's Vineyard Co-operative Bank, Numark, Alesis, Akai Professional, the Vineyard Gazette, and Jazziz magazine.

For tickets and information, call 508-693-0305, or visit www.vineyardvibes.com.