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Our Team

Music Heals Minds is on the cutting edge of research and engaging care for Alzheimer's Dementia and Brain Injury work. We are a member of the Sound Health Network and the Milken Institute's Alliance to Improve Dementia Care.

Our dedicated artists are trained by Certified Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia Care Trainers (NCCDP) and Trauma Studies Certified; and they can engage patients of all ages with terminal, chronic, or life-limiting illnesses. Our all-encompassing programs address the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of patients and their families.

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Nandani Sinha

Chief Executive Officer & Founder

German-Indian American mezzo-soprano Nandani Maria Sinha is internationally acclaimed for her passionate performances and presence. She is a favorite mezzo-soprano in Southern California, performing regularly with Los Angeles Opera, Long Beach Opera, Opera Santa Barbara, California Philharmonic, and Redlands Symphony.  Ms. Sinha is frequently called on by the Los Angeles Opera as both a singer and a teaching artist, collaborating on community projects with Alzheimer’s Greater Los Angeles, Rancho Los Amigos, Urban Voices, Los Angeles Children’s Hospital and City of Hope, and for in-school education programming. She is a teaching artist with Street Symphony and Urban Voices Project. Driven by a deep personal connection to memory care and dementia support through her father, Ms. Sinha also sings for Songs by Heart, an organization that provides singers to memory care unit in Los Angeles.  https://www.mezzonani.com/

Lindsay Patterson Abdou

Secretary / Treasurer

Mezzo Soprano Lindsay Patterson Abdou is a vocalist and educator from Riverside, California. She received her M.M. in Vocal Performance from California Baptist University, and B.A. in Music from the University of California Riverside. She is currently a roster alto with the Los Angeles Master Chorale, and staff singer the Pacific Chorale. Recent performances include the world premiere of Anthony Davis ’The Central Park Five as Sharonne Salaam, Bow, in the Industry’s Sweet Land, and The Metropolitan Opera’s 2019/2020 production of Porgy and Bess in the chorus ensemble. In addition to performing on stage, Lindsay has a passion for youth and music education. In 2013, she spent the summer in Rio De Janiero, Brazil serving underprivileged children through Hope World Wide. In the greater Los Angeles area, Lindsay spent several years mentoring and serving teens in need. As an educator, she currently works as an elementary music specialist for Palos Verdes Unified School District. Lindsay’s biggest passion is being a mother to her two small children, Vianne and Gabriel.

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Dr. Dorothy Yumi Garcia

Board Chair

Dorothy Yumi Garcia, EdD, an artist, cultural worker, and educator, has taught in public and private school settings in Miami & Southern California for forty years, bridging the divide between classroom and community through arts, literacy and social justice curricula. In Miami, her child-care work was closely connected to the resettlement of Ethiopian and Russian Jews, and she was an early participant in infant HIV programs provided by Dade County hospitals. As a member of the Core Faculty at Pacific Oaks College in Pasadena, Garcia re-launched and directed the Art Education Specialization,
held positions in the Human Development and Teacher Education Departments, served as Practicum Supervisor in the Children’s School and led the International/Crosscultural Program. Her ongoing work in teacher training, community programs and international conferences incorporates elements of the Reggio Emilia Approach and Theatre of the Oppressed Pedagogy. Garcia has documented hundreds of stories through the use of persona dolls, a multimedia storytelling vehicle, in diverse settings including AIDS hospices, juvenile detention centers, Japanese universities, and South African townships. Since 1999, Garcia has been an international arts, education, literacy and anti-bias consultant, and an active visual artist. To date, her daughter Chloe is her most satisfying work-in-progress.

Stephanie Williams

Secretary/Treasurer

Born and raised in small towns south of Dallas, Texas, Stephanie was involved in just about everything musical the city and local school system could offer. She began to stand as a performer in high school where she won numerous songwriting and choir awards, and performed in musicals and plays. She joined her first band at sixteen, and became a local music enthusiast of the music scene in the South West. At the age of eighteen, she moved to sunny California to complete her education and received a B.M. in Music Performance with Vocal Emphasis at Chapman University, studying under opera diva Carol Neblett. 

 

Fresh out of University, she began working for herself as a voice teacher and thus began what would become Los Angeles Voice Studio, where she has taught all ages and levels of singers for over fifteen years; helping all from Grammy-Award winning artists to local school musicals. Teaching voice combines two of her greatest loves on the planet: people and music.  It continues to be a blessing and gift beyond comprehension.


Stephanie has performed on the opera stage in roles such as Cherbino in Le Nozze di Figaro and has appeared on the stages of Los Angeles based opera companies such as The Industry and Pacific Opera Project. She also has performed with several jazz ensembles, including featuring with the Ryan Cross Trio at the historic Biltmore Hotel, sang in a gospel choir for years, and has played in a couple rock bands in the Silverlake area. In 2016, she accepted the position of Music Director at Christ Church, Los Angeles and currently band-leads and sings every Sunday. You will occasionally find her at a gallery art opening or fundraiser singing out her own songs from behind an electric blue guitar and can find her latest music recordings on Spotify under Childlike Empress.
 

Stephanie is very excited to begin this new journey with Music Heals Minds, fully convinced of the powerful and positive impact of music, while recognizing the growing need for focused attention and research to be given to some of society's most marginalized, in order to aid in their life's quality and enjoyment.

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Brooke deRosa

Director

Brooke deRosa is a composer, vocalist and conductor from Los Angeles, California. She has composed music for over twenty films.  The score for “The Search for Simon”, directed by BAFTA winner Martin Gooch, which she co-composed was nominated for Best Score at the Monaco International Film Festival and won Best Score at the Portsmouth International Film Festival.  Her following collaboration with Mr. Gooch, "The Gatehouse," premiered at Raindance London. As an internationally accomplished opera performer, she has been featured on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, the scores for the Netflix series "Luke Cage", “A Series of Unfortunate Events”, “Kingsman: The Golden Circle” and has performed locally with Pacific Opera Project, The Culver City Symphony, The San Bernardino Symphony, Redlands Symphony, and LA Opera. She has also conducted on TV’s Scandal, Luke Cage season 2 and albums for Amazon Music, Linear Labs, and most recently, Snoop Dogg.

Elizabeth Cohen

Primary Music Therapist

For over 25 years, Elizabeth Cohn has been transforming her passion for music into a meaningful musical career. She is a well-regarded voice coach, music educator and music therapist in private practice serving the special needs community. Currently she is a music therapy advisor for Music Heals Minds, a cantorial soloist at Creative Arts Temple, a voice coach and music educator in private schools and a published composer. She is bi-lingual in Spanish and has appeared on JLTV Jewish Live TV singing in Ladino, presented music therapy seminars at UCLA and has been an invited guest speaker for Women In Music Los Angeles. She served as President of the Women’s Chorale at CSUN where she received the award for outstanding achievement. Elizabeth earned a B.A. from UCLA in Music and Italian Studies and a B.A. in Music Therapy from CSUN.

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Thomas Harding

Director

Tom Harding, MA, is an educator and administrator specializing in multidisciplinary arts education, literacy and documentation, with a focus on Africana. He has taught mainstream and special education at preschool, elementary and middle school settings, and teacher education at the graduate level. In 1998, the California Arts Council awarded Harding with a three-year residency to integrate arts and fundamental subject curriculum in public schools. In 2003 Garcia and Harding co-founded Art Aids Art, a nonprofit organization promoting education and sustainable economic development through the arts. Art Aids Art’s collaborations with artist collectives have generated more than $500,000 in income for South Africans, most of them sole-breadwinning women. Its Babies & Books program, which received the 2007 Coretta Scott King Book Donation Award, has provided a steady supply of black dolls and multicultural children’s books to township child care programs and households. Art Aids Art became the first U.S. nonprofit to purchase property in Khayelitsha, South Africa’s largest township. In 2008 it opened eKhaya eKasi, a newly constructed art, education, and microbusiness center designed in collaboration with graduate architecture students from Harvard University.


Programs have included after school performing arts, women-led microbusinesses, a multilingual and multicultural lending library, and medicine distribution, with the ultimate goal of becoming a self-sustaining oasis of support for those impacted by extreme poverty and HIV/AIDS.

Anne Oh

Director

Anne Oh, MSG, is the Manager of Activity Programs and Support Groups at Alzheimer’s Los Angeles. She is a graduate of Chapman University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology with a concentration in Social Work and earned her Master of Science in Gerontology from University of Southern California Davis School of Gerontology.

 

Anne has significant experience in many different areas of the aging field. Since 2013, she has provided social services, and implemented programs and activities for older adults from various cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds, as well as those who have faced Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. She has a passion to help and advocate for older adults through the aging process.

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Steve Hauser

Director

Steve Hauser is a retired attorney and an aspiring writer, trying to do good in the world.  His law career was in criminal defense (specializing in death penalty defense), civil rights, and personal injury, as he did his bit to assure adequate representation for the poor.  In 1968, he started and led Boy Scout Troop 1135 in Willowbrook (between Watts and Compton) for ten years. He is now writing stories about his law work and a musical play about his time with the troop.

Steve is active at Westwood Presbyterian Church, singing in the choir and serving in many capacities. He is on the board of directors for Heart of Los Angeles, a youth enrichment program, and Foster-All, which finds homes for foster children.