Sangeeta Swamy

Sangeeta Swamy

Assistant Professor of Music and Director of Music Therapy


Sangeeta Swamy is Assistant Professor and Director of Music Therapy at Valparaiso University, where she teaches music therapy courses, violin, and viola. An award-winning violinist, licensed psychotherapist, and Board-Certified Music Therapist, she has worked with children, teens and adults for over twenty-five years. Dr. Swamy received her Bachelor of Music degree from Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, a Master of Music degree in violin performance and Suzuki pedagogy from the Cleveland Institute of Music, a Master of Arts degree from Naropa University in Transpersonal Psychology with a concentration in Music Therapy, and a PhD in Expressive Arts Therapy from Lesley University.

As a music therapy educator, she specializes in culturally responsive music therapy practice, supervision, and pedagogy. She has taught at the Metropolitan State University of Denver, Lesley University, and Molloy College, where she supervised expressive arts therapy and music therapy interns and taught core expressive arts and music therapy undergraduate and graduate courses. She has also lectured nationally and internationally, and has published in Music Therapy Perspectives, the New Zealand Journal of Music Therapy, and in peer reviewed chapters. She is currently the co-editor of The Handbook of Music Therapy, to be published by Routledge in 2019. She also has Level II training in the Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music and has studied shamanism with the Foundation for Shamanic Studies. Through her research with Indian adults, she developed Culturally Centered Music and Imagery (CCMI), the first qualitative, music-centered technique for assessing ethnic identity.

As a musician, Dr. Swamy has performed solo and chamber music performances at the Juilliard School, the Royal Conservatory of Music, the Banff Center for the Arts, the Vienna State Opera House, and on BBC, NPR, All-India Radio and Television. A founding member of the Powell and Chagall String Quartets, she was a prize winner in the Fischoff and Coleman Chamber Music Competitions and awarded a Rural Residency Grant from Chamber Music America and the National Endowment for the Arts. She has performed with Apollo’s Fire, the Cleveland Baroque Orchestra, the Chamber orchestra of the Triangle, the Boulder Philharmonic, and with the Tanglewood Fellowship Orchestra, where she performed under Seiji Ozawa and Simon Rattle. She studied violin with John Kendall, Donald Weilerstein, Kathleen Winkler, Marty Steiger, baroque violin with Marilyn McDonald, and chamber music with Norman Fischer and members of the Amadeus, Muir, Cavani, Juilliard and Cleveland Quartets. She has taught violin and viola at Naropa University, the Duke University String School, and at the Sound Mind School of Music which she founded in Durham, North Carolina.

Dr. Swamy is an experienced meditator and maintains a daily two-hour Vipassana practice in the tradition of S.N. Goenka. She also practices yoga regularly and has studied with Richard Freeman and K. Pattabhi Jois.