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Harp Instead provides complementary and alternative therapy appropriate in the management of chronic pain, hospice comfort, palliative care, and distraction from the complications of long term suffering or medical procedures. Harp Instead brings treatment to hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers and private homes that enhances the healing process and eases suffering. Individualized performances of music may bring relief from a myriad of symptoms when conventional medicine is not enough, doing so in a way that does not contradict medical treatments.

healing music and sense of well-being: recordings and live performance

Illinois therapeutic harpist bringing music as medicine: CD or performance

music as medicine brings few side effects

Why Angels Play Harps: a blog about therapeutic use of harp music

7 Ways Music Breaks Can Improve Your Health

Looking for a way to bring music to residents in assisted living or nursing care?

Consider the soothing effect of a private visit by a Harp Instead musician.


Barbara Fackler, harpist
Harp solo CD of therapeutic music to soothe and comfort, music for relaxation and stress relief
click on album cover for more info about this CD of solo harp music and for demo sound files (mp3)

Harp Instead Program

Harp Instead provides two services: Private Visits and Concerts of Comfort.

Private Visits:

Harp music with its resonant and gentle qualities provides far more benefit than candy, cards or flowers. TheBarbara Ann Fackler: hospice harpist: music for healing and soothing: CD comforting, soothing and caring effects of music lingers for days in memories.

Private visits are made by appointment (subject to approval by the facility management when appropriate). In general, Harp Instead visits are best during normal visiting hours. 

      therapy harp Visits last for 30 minutes.
    therapy harpThe harp is played next to the recipient.
    therapy harp Music is tailored to the recipient.
    therapy harp Close friends and family are welcome to attend the performance.
    therapy harp Gift cards are available.
    therapy harp Currently available only in Dupage County, Illinois.

Practical uses:

The therapeutic effects of harp music are noninvasive, free of negative side effects and completely personal:

    therapy harp Music reaches a person beyond the influence of drug therapies.
therapy harp Personalization of the music can aid recollection of pleasant memories while providing diversion and relaxation for the recipient.
therapy harp Music offers therapy that is complementary to therapies offered by conventional medicine.
therapy harp Private visits can be used to bring life enhancement services to residents of assisted living and nursing units who do not participate in group programs.  Click here for information on creative and affordable ways to include Harp Instead in your programming schedule and meet the needs of more of your residents. 

Since pain is a subjective experience, unique treatments like a Harp Instead performance provides a solution found no place else! Through its caring and personal approach, Harp Instead makes the recipient feel special. Personalized visits alieviate feelings of lonliness, boredom and anxiety.

2 Page Color Brochure (PDF) 928 KB

1 Page Black and White Brochure (PDF) 144 KB

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Concerts of Comfort:

Concerts of Comfort provide valuable time off for family members and caregivers. Concerts are scheduled by a hospital or nursing home at their facility, providing an opportunity for patients, family, caregivers and facility staff to enjoy live harp music in an informal and convenient setting. Concerts of Comfort offer the same benefit as a private visit from Harp Instead in a setting that allows groups to gather.

therapy harp Call for information on the next scheduled concert.
therapy harp Music requests are welcome.
therapy harp  Participation is flexible and meets the schedule requirements of the audience.
relaxation CD: stress relief CD: healing music CD
To offer a place of refuge from illness and suffering for patients, their families and caregivers, including on site staff.  

Relaxation, lessening of stress levels and respite are a few of the benefits of a Concert of Comfort. Those who attend a concert will find they are better able to cope with their situation. Music has been shown to reduce pain perception, alter blood pressure and respiration, ameliorate chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, and improve mood, all with no adverse side effects. Lingering benefits continue with the memory of the music.

Concerts of Comfort are informal. Attendees come and go at will, allowing participation to be flexible. Concerts may be formed spontaneously by allowing attendees to make requests on the spot, or more formally programmed around a specific genre of music. There is no dress code, allowing residents to attend as they are without embarrassment.

Concerts take place in hospitals, nursing facilities, rehab centers, churches, and other publicly accessible venues. Lobbies, cafeterias and meeting rooms all provide space suitable for Comfort Concerts. On rare occasions, concerts may be scheduled in a more private private setting. Contact your local health care facility to find out if they offer a Concert of Comfort.

One to two hours is the average length of  a Concert of Comfort. This allows a large block of time during which patients and their guests and staff can find time to attend all or part of the concert. Duration of attendance is left to the discretion of each audience member.

How to Schedule a Harp Instead Visit

Areas served by harpist: Dupage County, Illinois, including but not limited to Wheaton, Glen Ellyn, Winfield, Carol Stream, Lombard, Naperville, West Chicago, Lisle, and Warrenville.

Harp Instead now offers referrals to the Mount Prospect and Rockford, Illinois areas.

Recent visits by Harp Instead harpist have been to: Aurora Rehab, private homes, the British Home (Brookfield), Salem Village (Joliet), Tower Hill (South Elgin), Apostolic Christian Rest Haven (Elgin), ASTA (Elgin), Fairview Ministries (Downers Grove), The Renaissance (Hillside), Central Dupage Hospital, Good Samaritan Hospital, Wynscape Nursing Care, Marian Joy Rehabilitation Hospital, Marian Joy at Rest Haven West (Downers Grove).