How Music Shapes the Brain

Indre Viskontas / University of San Francisco

Neuroscientist and opera singer/director, Dr. Indre Viskontas, illustrates the wide-ranging power of music to shape our brains, heal our pain and strengthen our communities. The musician’s brain is hailed as a model of neuroplasticity, because of the many ways that learning and performing music changes it. But even listeners’ brains are altered, as brainwaves entrain to rhythms and brain activity and neurochemistry track the rise and fall of the music.  In this talk, Dr. Viskontas will explain the magical way in which music can bring us together–even in a pandemic.

 

Discussion Questions:

 

1. How can you use music strategically to improve your life?

 

2. What can music tell us about what it means to be human?

 

3. What makes great music great?