Aaron Lightstone - Music Director
Aaron Lightstone, MMT, RP, MTA, NMT-F is the founder and director of Music Therapy Toronto, a busy clinical practice which specializes in the rehabilitation of neurologic injury and disease. He is an award-winning music therapist, musician, composer, educator and researcher. Aaron holds Master of Music Therapy and Bachelor of Music Therapy degrees from the faculty of Music at Wildfrid Laurier University where he is occasionally enlisted as part-time faculty member (in the faculty of music and the faculty of graduate studies).
He has been performing on oud, guitar, and related instruments in performances and recordings for over 2 decades and best known as the founder and bandleader of the world music group JAFFA ROAD. Under Aaron’s leadership JAFFA ROAD has been recognized with a Canadian Folk Music Award, two JUNO award nominations as well as many other awards, artist grants and accolades.
Aaron has always had a strong interest in the music of many different cultures. This interest has lead to study and performance experience in Sephardic and Arabic music, classical guitar, jazz, classical Indian music, blues, and others. In the late 1990s Aaron spent a year living on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia where he conducted original Ethnomusicology research on the island’s unique, Indigenous folk music. His Master’s research focused on the therapeutic value of creating original rap and Hip Hop in Toronto’s Homeless shelters. He has performed and recorded with such artists as Eccodek, Ventanas, Aviva Chernick, Mark Weinstock, Noam Katz, Yair Dalal, Aaron Bensoussan, the Lemon Bucket Orchestra and others.
Aaron’s writings have been published in The Journal of Arts and Health, Canadian Musician Magazine, and he has contributed chapters to several Music Therapy text books.
Aaron has a long standing interest in how innovative use of music related technologies can make music making available and accessible to diverse groups of people. He has been directing the iBand since the second year of the band in 2015.
Shirley McNaughton - Founding Co- Director
Audrey King Co-Founder
Audrey King M.A. is a writer, advocate and educator on disability issues. She has served on many boards and advisory committees over the years, including the Ontario March of Dimes, the Ontario Advisory Committee on the Physically Handicapped, the Ontario Assistive Devices Program Advisory Committee, the Metropolitan Toronto District Health Council, the Advisory Committee developing Ontario’s PSW Curriculum and the Centre for Independent Living, Toronto.
She is a published author of two books and many articles and is internationally recognized as a writer and speaker on many issues related to community living with severe disability.
Audrey is retired from a 30 year professional career as a psychologist at Hugh MacMillan Rehabilitation Centre and has many years of experience with children and teens affected by cerebral palsy. In 2014 she co-founded with Shirly McNaughton the Bliss I-Band for individuals with severe cerebral palsy. Audrey is currently is a board member of CDAC (Communication Disabilities Across Canada).
Audrey’s life’s work has always been “consumer” focused as she continues to espouse the view that healing, not harm, arises from collaborative relationships . . . where the views and expertise of those receiving service are really understood.