Selecting the Best Music for the Moment in a Music and Imagery Session

How do we Experience the Choosing? A Trioethnography


  • Petra Jerling Music & Well-Being, Cape Town, South Africa
  • Carmen Angulo Sánchez-Prieto Private Practice, Logroño, Spain
  • Isabel Solana Rubio Montepríncipe Hospital, Madrid, Spain



Music and Imagery (MI); supervision; intervision; transition; trioethnography


Music and Imagery (MI) is a receptive music therapy method within the Continuum Model of Guided Imagery and Music developed by Lisa Summer. In receptive music therapy, clients listen to music for therapeutic purposes. The unique part of the MI method is that the client’s own music can be used. Three qualified music therapists from two countries trained together in the MI method and were grouped together for supervision. Moving away from the traditional therapist-client dyad model, we worked as a trio, with the third person in our trio actively witnessing the session and sharing her perspectives and reflections during the post-session discussion. This article focuses on discussing our experiences in selecting music for our individual processes, since this selection is the new concept in the MI method, called the transition. To report our experiences, we chose to use trioethnography. Each author told her own story, whilst the others took part actively in a small intervision group as critics, friends, and colleagues. In this way, we acknowledged each other’s processes as clients, therapists, and witnesses. Our experience of using intervision to explore the new concept of transition (choosing music) and reporting on that process using trioethnography was very positive. It became clear that intervision can be meaningful for all music therapists in clinical settings, and that trioethnography should be further explored as a research approach.

Author Biographies

Petra Jerling, Music & Well-Being, Cape Town, South Africa

Petra Jerling is a certified music psychotherapist in private practice in South Africa (Music and Well-being). She has recently submitted her PhD thesis which was completed at MASARA (Musical Arts in South Africa: Resources and Applications) at the North-West University. She is a qualified BMGIM and MI therapist, trained by Lisa Summer, and is a member of EAMI (European Association of Music and Imagery) and is on the steering committee of the Music Spirituality and Wellbeing Network and SA-ACAPAP (South African Association for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Allied Professions). She has published in the Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, Approaches, Religions, International Journal for Education and Arts, and Music Therapy Today. She has presented papers at various national and international conferences.

Carmen Angulo Sánchez-Prieto, Private Practice, Logroño, Spain

Carmen Angulo Sánchez-Prieto trained as a pianist at the RCSM of Madrid. She obtained a master’s degree in Musik und Tanz Erziehung at the Orff-Institut, Salzburg (1984–1986). She then did Advanced Studies in the Doctoral Programme (University of Zaragoza, 1999). She spent her teaching career in music education at the Universities of Zaragoza and La Rioja until 2012, when she retired. She is the co-founder of the electronic journal LEEME on music education and was co-editor from 1997–2012. She is a Fellow of AMI since 2016, EAMI accredited member and EAMI Board officer (2020-2024). She was trained in CMGIM by Lisa Summer. Carmen maintains a private practice of MI and BMGIM.

Isabel Solana Rubio, Montepríncipe Hospital, Madrid, Spain

Isabel Solana Rubio is music therapist in “Music therapy In Synchrony” and at the Paediatric Haematology and Oncology Unit in “Hospital Montepríncipe” (Madrid, Spain). She specialises in music therapy and medicine, music therapy for brain injury patients, entrainment methods (for chronic pain reduction); art therapy; grieving and end of life care; unified accompaniment; couples therapy; MI (Music and Imagery) therapy; GIM (Guided Imagery and Music) therapy; systemic and transpersonal therapy; bio-music; and instructing mindfulness and teaching yoga, especially with children, for pregnancy, and in therapy. She also has a degree in music pedagogy, in violoncello and in telecommunications (sound and image).

Photo of authors, Jerling et al.




How to Cite

Jerling, P., Angulo Sánchez-Prieto, C., & Solana Rubio, I. (2024). Selecting the Best Music for the Moment in a Music and Imagery Session: How do we Experience the Choosing? A Trioethnography. Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy, 24(1).