OSWEGO, NY – Broad smiles, happy faces and plenty of applause greeted Sophie Woods as the vocalist / guitarist provided the entertainment for happy hour at The Gardens Assisted Living Community in Oswego.
Woods, who will be her senior year at Oswego High School in the fall, has been performing as a solo artist for the past two years at a number of local venues including the Oswego Farmers’ Market and Pumpkin Fest.
Woods describes herself as having a passion for music…a passion she hopes will eventually become her career.
Woods discovered the field of music therapy through its use in the recovery of Congresswoman Gabby Giffords who suffered a traumatic brain injury in 2011.
Music therapy was a part of the recovery process that enabled Giffords to regain her speech.
“That’s what inspired me to pursue music therapy,” said Woods. “To be able to use music to create positive responses in the brain is fascinating. Music is the great communicator. You see the same spark in someone’s eye no matter what age.”
For her performance at The Gardens, Woods brought along someone she has just recently begun sharing the stage with on occasion, vocalist Dan Dillon.
Dillon’s spot on renditions of classic country hits from the likes of Hank Williams and Johnny Cash were a welcomed addition to Woods’ acoustic versions of rock hits from the 1970s and ‘80s and was a hit with the residents.
“It was a very dynamic performance,” said Jill Little, activities director at The Gardens. “Our residents loved it. They enjoyed the way Sophie and Dan interacted with them; they sang and clapped along with the songs and even danced. It truly was a happy hour and they were thrilled when Sophie and Dan added a two-song encore.”
As she enters her last year of high school and narrows down her choice of colleges, Woods said that she will continue to do what she loves, using her musical talents to make others happy.
“I am passionate about music,” said Woods. “I’m looking forward to a career in music therapy and being able to help better the lives of others through my music…that’s the dream!”
Located at 132 Ellen St., The Gardens is a 106-bed assisted living facility that provides an active living community and promotes independence while offering the support services necessary to assist individuals with their health care needs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
For more information, visit www.thegardensbymorningstar.com