Bill Ahessy Senior Music Therapist, Clinical Supervisor



Coming from a family where there was always music, playing guitar, piano and singing came naturally to Bill. His dad's involvement in directing community theatre and his mother's career in special education, social care and early childhood had an immence influence on him. After graduating with Bachelor of Music from U.C.C in 2001, Bill moved to Australia for 4 years, where he pursued a Post Graduate Diploma in Music Therapy at the University of Technology Sydney, 2004-2006. Clinical internships included private practice, mental health, older adult's care and working with children and teenagers with Austism at Giant Steps. Bill then relocated to Spain to undertake a Masters by research in Music Therapy at the University of Cadiz supervised by Patricia Sabbatella. His thesis explored lesbian, gay and bisexual issues in music therapy training and education and the results from this research were later published in the Canadian Journal of Music Therapy. In 2012, Bill completed a Diploma in Person-Centred Dementia care in the University of Surrey and in 2014 trained in Neurologic Music Therapy in Germany (approved by the Centre for Biomedical Research, University of Colorado). In 2015, Bill had the opportunity to spent three days orientation and observation at the Louis Armstrong Centre of Music Therapy at Beth Israel, Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, observing work in Neo-natal care, ICU, pediatrics, COPD and stroke.


Bill has worked in a wide variety of settings with people across the lifespan, including: children and adolescents with communication deficits, autism spectrum conditions, emotional behavioral disorders, visual impairment and multiple disabilities, adults with mental health difficulties and acquired brain injury and older adults with a variety of aged related conditions including stroke and dementia. He presently works in Dublin with older adults in the Meath Community Unit and with children and adolescents at ChildVision: The National School for Blind Children and St. John of God Special School. He implements an integrated and client-centred approach drawing on humanistic, developmental and and community music therapy theory.


Bill is a part-time lecturer on the MA in music therapy at the University of Limerick (UL) and a guest lecturer on the Medicine Degree in Trinity College Dublin School of Medicine. He also works as a clinical supervisor with practicing music/creative arts therapists as well as music therapy interns on clinical placement from UL and other International universities. Bill sat on the executive council of the Irish Association of Creative Arts Therapists (IACAT) for two years and worked as an administrator for the association for one year.


Bill has a deep interest in research and regularly presents and publishes his work. He spent a year working as a lead clinical researcher on a randomised control trial (RCT) exploring the effect of a music therapy on mood, cognitive function and quality of life in a group of older adults (funded by the Meath Foundation in Tallaght Hospital). This was the first RCT of it's kind in Ireland and the results were  presented at the European Congress of Music Therapy and published in the Journal of Music and Medicine in 2016. He has published a number of peer-reviewed articles in Irish and international journals and contributed to two books on music therapy, the most recent a chapter on choir interventions in music therapy in The Use of Creative Arts Therapies in Treating Depression.


Bill can be contacted by email at 





Phone no:



Meath Community Unit, 1 - 9 Heytesbury Street, Dublin 8


Email / Website