Small music programs for mental health and well-being: An evaluation framework


Music and Medicine




There is growing interest in the intersection of music and health, there is a lack of understanding of music’s broader, multifaceted effects on health. Group singing, in particular, has been reported to have benefits on physical, mental, and social health; but interactions between different effects to improve overall health and well-being are not well understood. This paper evaluated group singing programs to develop a three-category framework through organizing raw data to trace interactions amongst various effects of participating in group singing activities. The research population was two programs based in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC), London, UK meant to meet demands for community-serving non-medical interventions: the Sing to Live, Live to Sing in 2016, an adult singing program based in community centers across RBKC, and the (G)uided (L)earning, (U)niting and (E)ducating (GLUE) Sings program, an adolescent music-making and singing program piloted by RBKC’s Tabernacle W11 in 2018. Both programs were found to improve the holistic well-being of participants. The three-category framework was useful in organizing data and showing interactions between effects of singing on health. The framework can be used in future research using mixed methodologies and increasing collaboration amongst funders, researchers, program managers, and policymakers. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2021 APA, all rights reserved)

Music and Health Institute Terms

Adolescents; Community Center; Community Music Experience; Mental Health; Music Medicine; Psychological Outcomes; Quality of Life; Recreative Music Methods; Singing a Song; Wellness and Well-Being

Indexed Terms

evaluation framework; group singing programs; mental health; well-being; non-medical interventions; adolescent music-making; adults; Group Development; Singing; Well Being; Adolescent Development; Adult Development; Collaboration; Community Facilities; Intervention

Study Type

Case Study; Qualitative Methods

Document Type