Music therapist Kat is sat playing an electric keyboard and next to her is Bevin playing an acoustic guitar.

Bevin’s story

At Nordoff Robbins we’re committed to working with the more vulnerable members of our communities who could benefit the most from our music therapy. That’s why we work in a variety of settings including prisons and secure psychiatric hospitals.

For Bevin, having regular sessions with our music therapist Katy while a patient in a mental health unit has been a key part of his recovery.



He has had a long history of mental health problems which meant he wasn’t able to finish his university degree, found it difficult to stay in work and led to him become homeless, getting by through busking on the streets.

When he was first admitted to the unit staff were concerned that his confidence, self-esteem and motivation were dangerously low. But they could hear him singing alone in his room so suggested that he could benefit from music therapy.

Therapist Katy said: “His eyes lit up as soon as he saw the guitar. Immediately he started to play and sing, so I supported him on the piano, using my own voice to build a connection. After the session, Bevin said it had been the most enjoyable hour he’d had in a long time – it was clear that music had the potential to motivate him to get out of bed and engage with another person.”

Through the individual sessions Bevin has rediscovered a desire to perform and from small performances
to a few other people this has grown to big musical productions at the hospital in front of a 100-strong audience. And he has now formed a band with other patients and runs regular jamming sessions.

Bevin said: “Before I came onto the ward and met Katy, music used to be about making money to buy drugs. However, now I have learnt from Katy that there’s more to music, and now I find it meaningful and it’s a large part of my life.”

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