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Welcome to Keynote Music Therapy! Our board-certified music therapists serve the greater Twin Cities region of Minnesota. We are committed to helping our clients identify and meet their unique needs through music. Let us help you achieve your goals by combining the power of music with the experience and training of a music therapist.

 

At Keynote, we believe in...

The therapeutic power of music

The expertise of our board-certified music therapists

Creating a customized plan for your specific needs based on a thorough assessment

YOU

Our Team

Kayla Shafer, MA, MT-BC

Director of Services,

Music Therapist

Kayla is the Director of Services and co-founder of Keynote Music Therapy. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Education from St. Olaf College, after which she taught middle school band for several years. Interested in how music uniquely impacts personal goals, she returned to school and earned a Masters of Arts degree in Music Therapy from the University of Minnesota. Throughout her teaching and therapy career, Kayla has worked with a variety of populations, including: neurotypical adults and children with unique learning styles, children and adolescents with intellectual and developmental disabilities, individuals on the autism spectrum, pediatric and adult medical patients, oncology patients, individuals in hospice care, and adults with Parkinson's Disease.  Kayla's strong interest in writing and research has resulted in two published articles in peer-reviewed journals. She is continually active as a therapist and teacher. She manages a private lesson studio and serves as the primary instructor for Psychology of Music at the University of Minnesota. Kayla has presented at the national American Music Therapy Association conference in Dallas, Texas and in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is an annual guest lecturer at the University of Minnesota.   Keynote Music Therapy is an avenue in which Kayla hopes to connect individuals to the incredible benefits of music therapy.

Ben Musburger, MS, LMFT

Director of Business Operations

Ben is a co-founder of Keynote Music Therapy. He is a graduate of the Carlson School of Management - University of Minnesota and holds a Master's degree in Marriage & Family Therapy from the University of Wisconsin - Stout.  Ben entered the field of healthcare over 10 years ago and has served in  multiple leadership roles including management of hospice and clinic operations. He is currently a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who assists people in processing grief, identity formation, life transitions, and relationships.  Ben was first exposed to music therapy in 2010. After observing sessions and interacting with both practitioners and clients, Ben was amazed by the powerful, positive change that music therapy delivered. With Keynote Music Therapy, Ben hopes to continue to grow the profession of music therapy by creating access for more individuals.

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Carolyn Meyer, MT-BC

Music Therapist, Manager

Carolyn is a board-certified music therapist and received her Bachelor of Science degree in Music Therapy from Augsburg University.  Carolyn has implemented music therapy services in a variety of settings including adult day services, preschools, memory care, children's hospitals and even at a burn recovery camp for children in China. Her mission is to foster healing and self-discovery for the clients she engages with.  She also takes her skills and passions to the community as an advocate for both the populations she serves as well as the field of music therapy. Outside of music therapy, Carolyn loves to play music with friends, spend time in nature and try new cuisines! ​

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Jennifer Blair, MT-BC

Music Therapist

Jennifer is a board-certified music therapist.  She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Performance from North Central University, with voice as her major instrument. After developing an interest in the therapeutic benefits of music, Jennifer returned to school and is currently working on her thesis for a Master’s in Music Therapy at Augsburg University.  Jennifer has experience working with a variety of clients including: individuals in hospice care, individuals with cancer and their families, bereavement, adults with dementia, children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as both neurotypical and developmentally delayed young children. She also had opportunity to work with children and adolescents at a pediatric burn recovery camp in China. A strong passion of Jennifer’s is to use her music therapy training to serve populations with high risk factors for experiencing poverty, abuse, and neglect.  She is passionate about using music to bring comfort and healing to the individuals, families, and communities that she serves. Outside of music therapy, Jennifer loves to cook, travel, spend time with her family, and making music every chance she gets.

David St Charles, MT-BC

Music Therapist

David is a board-certified music therapist and currently finishing his Masters in music therapy through Augsburg University. David loves working with a variety of client populations and ages in group and individual settings. He brings enthusiasm, creativity, and curiosity about his clients to each session. David is interested in a wide range of music and musical experiences, and he looks forward to connecting with clients through music! Outside of music therapy, David enjoys cooking, mountain biking, and playing with his orange cat, Weasley!

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Shannon Wenzel, MT-BC

Music Therapist

Shannon is a board-certified music therapist. She attended Augsburg University where she received her Bachelor of Science degree in Music Therapy with a minor in Psychology.  Shannon was inspired to enter this field by her grandmother, who worked as a music therapist with veterans and mental health patients in the 50’s. Her legacy greatly influenced Shannon’s desire to help others find meaning and joy through music. She has experience working with older adults, individuals in memory care, adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, adults with substance use disorders, transgender teens, and has a special place in her heart for work in a hospice care setting.  In her personal time, Shannon loves making music for herself, singing karaoke, going to local shows, quality time with loved ones, and hiking with animal friends

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Kristi McNellis, MT-BC

Music Therapist

Kristi is a board-certified music therapist completing her master’s degree in music therapy at Augsburg University in Minneapolis. Before pursuing music therapy, she received degrees in piano performance and nursing from Augustana University. Kristi has experience utilizing music therapy with a broad range of clients across multiple settings, including in-patient hospital units for pediatrics and adults, memory care, long-term care, hospice, mental health, Parkinson’s, and cancer treatment. During her internship, she had the opportunity to work with clients through a virtual Harmonicas for Health program for patients with chronic respiratory diseases. While working as a nurse and teaching piano, Kristi became increasingly intrigued by music’s potential to address goals in all domains of wellness across of the lifespan. She believes in the importance of relationship and strives to combine evidence-based practice with kindness and competence in her work as a music therapist. Outside of music therapy, Kristi loves to spend time with her family, attend concerts, and experience the seasons by hiking the trails near Minnesota’s beautiful rivers and lakes.

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Emily Dobson, MT-BC

Music Therapist

Emily is a board-certified music therapist. She attended Drury University and received her Bachelor of Music Therapy with a minor in Psychology and a certificate in Celebrating Neurodiversity. She recently completed her internship at Children’s MN hospital in the Twin Cities. Emily has experience in a variety of settings including kids and adults with developmental disabilities, inpatient pediatric medical setting, and addiction recovery setting. She is particularly passionate about facilitating group music therapy sessions and has experience leading developmental groups in a pediatric oncology setting, eating disorder recovery groups, and older adult memory care groups. Emily believes in utilizing music to allow each individual to maximize their personal strengths. Outside of music therapy, Emily enjoys baking, crafting, and spending time with family and friends.

Michelle McConnell, MT-BC

Music Therapist

Michelle is a board-certified music therapist. She attended University Wisconsin Eau Claire, where she received her Bachelor of Science degree in Music Therapy. Michelle has provided music therapy services for children as young as age 3, to clients of the young at heart up to the age of 104. She has had the privilege of being a music therapist for 30 years! Most recently, Michelle worked as music therapist and wellness coordinator with memory care clients. Michelle always strives to key into the uniqueness and passions of each individual, to build positive connections through music therapy. She enjoys the creative process to provide successful interventions to address non musical goals. Michelle enjoys observing the positive response that the power of music brings in a music therapy session. Michelle also teaches piano lessons. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time outdoors, scouting garage sales, and spending time with friends and family.

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Lauren Schaff, MT-BC

Lauren is a board-certified music therapist who graduated from Illinois State University in 2022. She has experience working with a wide variety of populations, including in school settings, subacute rehab facilities, inpatient and outpatient pediatric health settings, and with individuals with developmental disabilities. At her internship through Advocate Children’s in Chicagoland, Lauren developed a passion for bringing music to patients to help them cope with the difficulties of hospitalization. Lauren loves writing songs and improvising with clients to support self-expression, emotional processing, sensory grounding, and positive mood. Outside of Keynote, Lauren enjoys reading, writing her own music, going on nature walks, spending time with loved ones, and playing with her cat Acorn.

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