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Dr Alex Street

Senior Research Fellow

Cambridge Institute for Music Therapy Research (CIMTR)

Faculty of Arts, Humanities, Education and Social Sciences
Cambridge School of Creative Industries
Areas of Expertise:
Music , Health and social care , Neuroscience , Music therapy , Music technology , Neurorehabilitation , Disorders of consciousness
Research Supervision:

Alex specialises in the design and use of treatment protocols for rehabilitation following brain injury in children and adults. He incorporates technology in his work in order to improve patient accessibility and treatment efficacy. He is a member of the Cambridge Institute of Music Therapy Research (CIMTR).

[email protected]


Alex trained as a music therapist at the Guildhall school of music and drama and immediately began working in neurodisability settings. He has established, run posts and supervised Masters students on placement in community, acute and subacute NHS and non-NHS neurorehabilitation settings, including setting up home programs of exercises for patients. Alex has also worked for children’s services within local authorities, specialising in the treatment of emotional and psychological trauma, cerebral palsy, sensory impairment and autism. He has published on the use of music technology, songwriting and neurologic music therapy (NMT) interventions, and presented internationally.

Alex’s PhD research was a collaboration with a NHS primary care trust in Cambridgeshire, recruiting people with upper limb hemiparesis following stroke as part of a RCT investigating a neurologic music therapy sensorimotor technique. Alex is currently a senior research fellow at ARU, continuing his research into music-based interventions for neurorehabilitation and investigating the effects of music therapy on quality of life, mood and neuropsychiatric symptoms in people with dementia.

Spoken Languages
  • English
  • Italian
Research interests
  • Sensorimotor, cognitive and speech rehabilitation for adults and children with acquired brain injury
  • Musical instrument learning and cognitive development in children
  • Music therapy in community based neurorehabilitation
  • Music therapy and disorders of consciousness

Alex’s primary research interest is music and neurorehabilitation, with a particular focus on the effects of music and musical elements on mood, cognitive, communication and motor functions in adults and children with acquired brain injury. He also has a particular interest in the use of musical instruments (formal and informal instrumental tuition) on cognitive development in children.

Areas of research supervision
  • Neurorehabilitation (adult and children)
  • Disorders of consciousness
  • Work in special schools
  • Music and neuroscience
  • Protocol development
  • Neuroscience and the arts
  • Music and cognition
  • The use of music technology in music therapy with all patient populations
  • Music therapy protocols for assessment in adults and children
  • Music therapy and music-based interventions for neurodisability and neurodegenerative conditions
  • Bachelor of music, City University, London
  • Diploma in music therapy, Guildhall School of Music and Drama
  • PhD in neurologic music therapy, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge
Selected recent publications

Street, A. J., Zhang, J., Pethers, S., Wiffen, L., Bond, K., Palmer, H. 2020. Neurologic music therapy in acute stroke rehabilitation: could it be feasible and helpful? Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation. Taylor and Francis. DOI: 10.1080/10749357.2020.1729585

Street, A. J., Fashner, J., Magee, W. L. 2019. Upper limb rehabilitation in stroke using neurologic music therapy: two contrasting case studies to inform on treatment delivery and patient suitability. Nordic Journal of Music Therapy. Taylor and Francis. DOI: 10/1080.08098131.2019.1606848

Street, A. J., Magee, W. L., Bateman, A., Parker, M., Odell-Miller, H., Fachner, J. 2017. Home-based neurologic music therapy for arm hemiparesis following stroke: results from a pilot, feasibility randomized controlled trial. Clin Rehabil [e-journal] 32 (1), pp. 18-28. DOI: 10.1177/0269215517717060

Street, A. J., Magee, W. L. Odell-Miller, H. Bateman. A. Fachner, J. C. 2015. Home-based Neurologic Music Therapy for Upper Limb Rehabilitation with Stroke Patients at Community Rehabilitation Stage - a Feasibility Study Protocol. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, [e-journal] 9 (00480)

Street, A. 2015. The Two Guitarists as Warp and Weft: A Case Study. In: Oldfield, A. Tomlinson. J. Loombe. D, ed. 2015. Flute, Accordian or Clarinet: Using the Characteristics of Our Instruments in Music Therapy. London: Jessica Kingsley.

O'Kelly, J.W. Magee. W. Street, A. Fachner, J. Drake, A. I. Cahen, J. Särkämö, T., Ridder, H. M. Jungblut, M. Melhuish, R. Taylor, D. 2014. Music Therapy Advances in Neuro-disability - Innovations in Research and Practice: Summary Report and Reflections on a Two-Day International Conference. Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy, [e-journal].

Street, A. 2014. Using Garageband music software with adults with acquired brain injury at Headway East London: Identity, Communication and Executive Function. In: W. Magee, ed. 2014. Music Technology in Therapeutic and Health Settings, 2014. London: Jessica Kingsley. Ch.11

Street, A. 2012. Combining Functional and Psychoanalytic Techniques, Using Rhythmic Auditory Stimulation (RAS) and Songwriting to Treat a Man with a Traumatic Brain Injury. Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy, [e-journal] 12 (3), pp.6.