An interview with Dr Diane Austin


  • Patricia Preston-Roberts



music therapy


For many years Dr Diane Austin has been developing a very special use of the voice in her practice as a music psychotherapist. The transformational aspects of this approach have been witnessed by colleagues who have heard Diane present at conferences or have read of her work in various publications. There are now further opportunities for colleagues to find out more about her work by reading her recent book or participating in her trainings. On behalf of the editors of the series of interviews for Voices I am delighted to be able to introduce this interview with Diane by one of her colleagues Patricia Preston-Roberts. There is also a linked audio example. In the interview Diane explains how her approach evolved and she identifies some of the key features of the work. She provides some links to the theories underpinning her practice and talks very openly about some issues of countertransference that arise as part of this very powerful and profound way of working. Throughout the interview we are aware how all aspects of the voice have an enormous influence on the development of a warm and trusting therapeutic relationship. From the moment a client enters Diane's consulting room it is clear that her deep and empathic listening ability enables her to make connections to every vocal nuance, whether spoken or sung. As she points out "the whole session" can be viewed "as an improvisation."

Author Biography

Patricia Preston-Roberts

Patricia Preston-Roberts, MT-BC, LCAT is currently in private practice in both New York City and in New Jersey as a vocal/music psychotherapist. Patricia Preston-Roberts is a licensed creative arts therapist, a board certified music therapist and a certified vocal psychotherapist. Ms. Preston-Roberts worked for many years as a professional actress and singer before returning to school as an adult to train to become a music therapist.  Much of her work has been with trauma survivors, primarily of violence, neglect and/or abuse, both with children and adults.  She has also worked in depth with hospitalized adult psychiatric patients.  She has presented extensively, both nationally and internationally, mostly about using Dr. Austin's techniques in her own work. She is in the process of applying to become a doctoral candidate.




How to Cite

Preston-Roberts, P. (2011). An interview with Dr Diane Austin. Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy, 11(1).