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Our Philosophy

Martin Buber is known as “a philosopher of Dialogue” due to his “I and Thou” theory about human relationship. Though “I think, therefore I am” (Decartes) is the fundamental thought about human being in modern philosophy, Buber insists that there is ‘something’ between I and you and the world consists of this.


It is a new ripple that appears where my ripple and your ripple meet, and people can live in this conscious (mutuality) of wholeness. “Where I and Thou meet, there is the realm of ‘Between’” (Buber, 1966).

Gary Ansdell (1995) applying Buber’s theory into music therapy stated that in music therapy the ‘Between’ is the music itself where our creative responses can draw an ‘I’ and a ‘You’ into an ‘I-You’. From the first contact, we start to forge the ‘Musical Between’ where music is not just a physical presence between us but a creative sharing of musical thought, feeling, form and meaning.

The Between cannot be seen, heard nor touched, but Musical Between can be heard, and it allows us a ‘becoming together’ rather than just a ‘being together’.


Izumi Nago

Director, Senior Music Therapist, Community Activity Facilitator

BA (Piano); GDip (Music Therapy); MA (Creative Music Therapy); GC (Research); AMTA Registered Music Therapist

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Izumi has practiced music therapy for over 20 years in various fields including mental health, geriatric care, children and adults disability, adolescents at risk, and the general population - both in Japan and Australia.Izumi began her career as a classical pianist, having graduated from the Osaka College of Music. An opportunity to observe and take part  in music therapy sessions in a psychiatric hospital was the turning point that led Izumi to study music therapy. She witnessed that music could immediately

sweep away the social barriers caused by illness and disability, promoting communication and connecting people.

She studied music therapy at Toho Gakuen in Tokyo, and completed her Graduate Diploma in Music Therapy at the University of Technology Sydney, followed by the Masters of Creative Music Therapy at the University of Western Sydney. Izumi then completed a Graduate Certificate in Research Studies with high distinction from the University of Western Sydney. Izumi is interested in the area of the fulfilment of the human needs of “differentiation” (desire to feel different from others as an a unique individual) and “integration” (desire to feel the same as others and belong to society) through music. 

Izumi uses the Nordoff-Robbins music therapy approach which is humanistic and client centred. Her strength is clinical improvisation which enable to connect with a person in a deeper level of consciousness. She is also strength focused that enhances the person's potentials at maximum. 

Izumi directs Musical Between as an inclusive music centre, which provides music therapy, art therapy and art-based community activities - with the aims of enhancing the individual’s sense of well-being; and of connecting the individual with his/her community.  She also hopes that this centre will contribute to a more inclusive community in general. 

Marie Yoshikawa

Music Therapist, Administrator

Dip (Vocal); GDip (Music Therapy); AMTA Registered Music Therapist

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After studying classical singing, Marie studied Music Therapy at University Technology Sydney and became an AMTA Registered Music Therapist in 2006. She has experience in the disability sector and geriatric care. She is also a mother of two.

Her current interests lie in studies related to the human brain; how music is processed in our brains and how music can be best incorporated in music therapy sessions.

Marie believes that creating a safe and trusting space is crucial to maintaining a client's inner balance and harmony.

Marie also manages the administration side of Musical Between. She has experience in small business through to multiple entity (group) administration.

Sayoko Burton

Art Therapist, Community Activity Facilitator

Adv Dip (Transpersonal Art Therapy), Dip (Pastel), ANZACATA tire membership, Nippon Origami Association registered Origami instructor

Sayoko Burton is a dedicated professional with a passion for fostering wellness, mindfulness, and self-development through art therapy and origami. Sayoko brings a unique blend of creativity and expertise to her practice.

Specialising in both group settings and one-on-one sessions, Sayoko’s approach is deeply rooted in client-centered principles.  She embodies empathy and non-judgment, creating a safe and


supportive space where individuals of all ages can explore their thoughts, emotions, and experiences through artistic expression.


With a profound respect for each individual's values and personal journey, Sayoko tailors her sessions to meet the unique needs of her clients. Whether working with children or adults, her goal remains the same: to facilitate growth, healing, and self-discovery.


Through her work as an art therapist, Sayoko encourages mindfulness and fosters holistic well-being, guiding her clients on a journey of self-awareness and empowerment. With her compassionate demeanour and dedication to her craft, Sayoko continues to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those she serves.

Ethan Chew

Apprentice Music Therapist

2nd year in MA (Creative Music Therapy)

Ethan is a 2nd-year student in the Master of Creative Music Therapy at Western Sydney University. He aims to forge meaningful connections in music therapy encounters. He is particularly drawn to the power of improvisation as a tool for creative expression and therapeutic connection.


He is a competent singer with experience in the St. Mary’s Cathedral choir and the Sydney Children’s Choir. He has also performed the violin on numerous stages with orchestras. He currently has a passion for playing his cello in music therapy and community sessions that brings joy to everyone.

Beyond music, his passions extend to golf, cars, basketball, soccer, assembling IKEA furniture, chess, and watching movies.

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Flinders Stokes

 Music Therapist

BA (Arts in Music; Science in Psychology); MA (Creative Music Therapy); AMTA Registered Music Therapist

Flinders is passionate about the interaction between music and psychology to develop clients’ self-directed agency. He tailors his approach to clients’ needs using therapeutic methods from Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy, Neurological Music Therapy, and Cognitive Processing Therapy. He uses music to pave the way for speech development, emotional regulation, and social interactions.


Flinders practices meditation and maintains that it is essential to his effectiveness as a therapist. He is also a creator of kids' music and folk music, which he posts on various social media platforms.

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