Music and Mental Wellbeing: A Harmonious Journey with Lavinia Meijer

February 7, 2024

In a unique convergence of art and science, the Neurobiology & Behavior Wellbeing & Resiliency Series recently hosted Dutch harpist Lavinia Meijer at the Herklotz Conference Center. The event, led by Associate Professor John Guzowski, explored the impact of music on mental health and wellbeing.

Lavinia Meijer, a renowned figure in the harp world, is known for her interpretations of contemporary composers like Phillip Glass and her own compositions. Beyond her performances, Meijer is passionate about connecting music and science, as seen in her collaboration with Leiden University, where she explored the physiological effects of her performances.

Earlier that day, Meijer had been a guest during Professor Guzowski’s lecture for his course on “The mind-body connection in the neuroscience of wellbeing.” This prior engagement highlighted the intersection of music, neuroscience and mental health.

During the event at the Herklotz Conference Center, Professor Guzowski emphasized the diverse impacts of music, including its ability to influence motor behaviors and alleviate affective disorders like depression and anxiety.

“Music can affect things like motor behaviors, affective and motivational disorders like depression, anxiety … so music is potentially very powerful medicine,” said Professor Guzowski.

Attendees were treated to Meijer’s performances, which underscored music’s capacity to foster connection and resilience. From stress reduction to community building, the therapeutic role of music resonated deeply with the audience.

In the interplay of melody and discussion, Lavinia Meijer and Professor Guzowski shed light on the profound influence of music on mental health and wellbeing.

Learn more about Lavinia Meijer and Professor John Guzowski.