Dr Vicky Abad is a Registered Music Therapist with extensive national and international clinical experience in paediatric and family centred early intervention music therapy.
She holds a PhD in music therapy and music early learning and is an internationally respected teacher, researcher, presenter and clinician.
Vicky trained as a music therapist at the University of Queensland in 1993-94. Prior to this she completed her Bachelor of Arts Music degree at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music, where she majored in voice and opera studies.
During her music therapy studies Vicky completed clinical training in paediatrics, aged care and rehabilitation settings in both Australia and Canada. She was awarded a Queen’s Trust scholarship to complete a 4-month internship at Wascana Rehabilitation Centre, Saskatchewan, Canada before returning to Australia and registering to practice with the Australian Music Therapy Association (AMTA).
Vicky has extensive clinical experience working with people across the lifespan from babies through to older adults living with dementia. After working for several years as a music therapist in a dementia ward, Vicky worked at the Royal Children’s Hospital in the oncology, burns, surgical and rehabilitation wards. She then set up the Sing & Grow program, a parent-child music therapy early intervention program in 2001. This program was funded to expand nationally and continues to this day to provide valuable services to thousands of Australian families.
Vicky completed her Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Research at QUT, examining the effectiveness of a short-term group music therapy intervention for young parents and their children.
After the birth of her own child Vicky set up a small business Music Beat Australia (formerly Boppin’ Babies) to run music groups in the community that her daughter could attend. This business now incorporates Music Beat Therapy Services, where Vicky continues to work as a music therapist and the Managing Director.
Vicky has been the Program Director of the Master in Music Therapy Course at the University of Queensland, Brisbane, and the Director M.A. of Music Therapy at the University of Limerick’s Irish World Music Centre in the Republic of Ireland.
Vicky has been involved in real world research throughout her career, always working as a clinician, lecturer and researcher. Vicky completed her PhD in 2018.
You can read Dr Vicky’s PhD thesis online at the The University of Queensland UQ eSpace online library.
She continues to work as a researcher at the University of Queensland where she researches music early learning and the impact of this on family well-being.
She has achieved international recognition for her clinical work and research in the area of music therapy parent-child intervention and the impact of music early learning on family health and well-being, and published widely . She has presented and keynoted in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Taiwan, Norway, Austria, Hong Kong and the United Kingdom. Her book The Economic of Therapy which she edited with colleague Dan Thomas was published in April 2017.
Dr Vicky is the immediate past President of the Australian Music Therapy Association.