Besides being a professional jazz pianist, Michiel is also a music-therapist. He gives special performances in homes for the elderly, for people with memory issues.
He has extensive work experiences with people who have memory problems because of dementia or brain-damage. In the various homes for the elderly he offers a special programme in which he performs
a mixture of music-compositions of his own but also songs that people recognise from the past so that they can participate and sing along together.
The repertoire is a variety from quiet and sensitive music to swinging & ambiance music.
The balance between being active and singing along (and sometimes physically participating with the music) and being passive and only listening, is strived to be as
good as possible, this by tuning in to the experiences of the audience and by taking the tension bow of the listener into account.
By playing songs that the people recognise from the past, the music functions as a structure to hold on to and they refer to valuable areas and memories from
the past. The music activates the listeners and brings them in to the present, the here and now, which has a positive influence for their well-being for the rest of the day.