Maria Gianfrancisco, MA, MT-BC

Maria Gianfrancisco, MA, MT-BCCertified Music Therapist

I am a board-certified music therapist and have been working in eldercare for almost 13 years. My journey to be where I am today has been somewhat circuitous. When I was younger, whenever we visited my grandfather (who had Lewy Body dementia), my mother would encourage my sister and me to sing selections from whatever theater show we happened to be in at the time. His eyes would light up when we sang, and he “came back” to us, if even for a second. I observed that music had a profound impact on him emotionally, physically, and cognitively.

However, it wasn’t until my junior year of college when I discovered the field of music therapy. I was still uncertain of my career at that point, but after some aimless wandering and self-exploration, I entered graduate school to study this unique discipline.

Throughout my career, I have provided music therapy for individuals in memory care, skilled nursing, ventilator units, and most recently hospice. Likely due to my grandfather’s influence, I am most passionate about finding meaningful moments for those living with dementia.

I am thrilled to join the SPICE team. I strongly believe in its mission to bring joy, engagement, and life-enriching experiences to those impacted by cognitive, physical, and mental illnesses. Recreation is a reminder that we are never “too old” to play, to find joy and fulfillment in life, and to experience contentment.

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