A Diamond Music Moment with Mary Sue

A Diamond Music Moment with Mary Sue post page

By Online Dementia JournalFebruary 13th, 2018

A Diamond Music Moment with Mary Sue

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by Mary Sue Wilkinson,

Founder – Singing Heart to Heart


Maria is a soft, round woman wearing a bright red sweater and a quiet smile. Maria is from Italy. She has lived in the United States for some time and yet she carries her Italian accent and is not entirely fluent in English. Maria recently started coming to our weekly music sessions. She did not grow up with the old standards we usually sing and so she often just listens, adding a few words here and there when she knows a line or two of a song. A few weeks ago, in an effort to include her more, I asked her what her favorite song was. She told me Mama. With tears welling up in her eyes, she described for me how her husband would sing it back in Italy.

I found it on YouTube and played it for everyone with my handy dandy wireless speaker. Maria sang along. The next week she brought me the words in Italian. I can't say I have been able to sing it for her, but each week when she comes, we play Mama for Maria. Today was no exception. Maria and I went into our own little world, holding hands and gently swaying to the music. She sang all the words, I chimed in on "Mama."

When the song ended all the other residents started to clap. They could see the joy this song brought to Maria and they shared her happiness.

I hope you enjoy this beautiful song and can picture my sweet friend Maria singing along.

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Mary Sue Wilkinson is the founder of Singing Heart to Heart and the author of “Songs You Know By Heart: A Simple Guide for Using Music in Dementia Care,” from which this Music Moment is an excerpt. The book includes contributions from Teepa Snow as well as Mary Sue’s CD of 18 favorite sing along songs. Buy the book HERE.


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