Visual Soundscapes

Art of Life — Produced by Karen Smyles

Visual Soundscapes for Mental Health Pathways to Recovery is a project created by award winning musician/composer, Leslie Burrs and the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services. The project is designed to establish a new model for mental health service delivery, education, awareness, and stigma reduction, through the art of film, music and poetry. The goal is to produce a multi-phased series of music videos on various mental health issues, that will be shared with people of all backgrounds.

The first video created is titled Autumn Journey and aims to educate people about mental health issues related to addiction and recovery. It features two individuals who have successfully gone through the recovery process and share their experiences in very touching, open ways. But, what makes this project unique is that it is nothing like the typical film dealing with issues like this. It is done in an artful way using beautiful images, music and poetry.

Friday Arts goes behind the scenes to experience the making of the music for Autumn Journey at Forge Recording in Oreland, Pennsylvania and talks with Burrs about the project’s creation. We also interview Arthur C. Evans, Jr., commissioner of Philadelphia’s Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services, to learn why the organization decided to take this artistic approach. Bruce Zahn, EdD, a psychologist at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine also shares why he was eager to be a part of it all.

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