Jessica Roemischer is an award-winning pianist, composer, writer and teacher. She was trained in the finest European tradition--her lineage links directly to Frederic Chopin and Ludvig van Beethoven--but she goes beyond her classical roots to bring to life a vast spectrum of music from Gregorian chant to the Dave Matthews Band. Jessica has performed widely, including on many occasions for Governor Deval Patrick. New York Daily News columnist Greg Thomas calls Jessica's solo piano performance, "a tapestry of sound textures that evoke peace, because they come from love." Jessica released her first piano recording, "Haven," in 2011, and has just released a new album, "In Duet with God." Both are available on iTunes, Amazon and CDBaby.
In addition to being a consummate artist, Jessica Roemischer uses her musical abilities to help awaken others to their own creativity and authentic voice. Over the course of thirty years, she has developed a means of improvising in duet at the piano, working with individuals from 18 months to 85 years of age, including those with disabilities such as blindness, autism and Down syndrome. The result is a unique modality she calls, The Duet Paradigm. Jessica believes that, when given an optimum environment for exploration and discovery, an individual will invariably come forth with extraordinary strengths and creative capacities. Her "Duet Paradigm" led to a nomination for a 2012 CNN Heroes Award and a 2012 Community Partner Award from the Association for People with Autism. Her work at Riverbrook Residence for Women with Disabilities was supported by the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Carolyn and James Taylor.
As a writer, Jessica's articles and interviews have delved into some of the most pertinent spiritual and cultural issues of our time. She has dialogued with world-renowned individuals such as Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Apollo astronaut, Edgar Mitchell, and guitarist, Carlos Santana. Her new book--a spiritual memoir--will be released late 2013/14. It is also called "In Duet with God."
Pardon my delay, I'm paddling as fast as I can but the river is so swift.
Jessica, I backed into working with children with DevDisorders. I started out in electronics in the Navy ('62) and started working with IBM in computer service, then software development in the mid '60s. I left IBM in '80 and went off on a tangent I discovered in night school. I have degrees in Anthropology (BS, '72, Fordham) and Educational Counseling (MS, '77, U of Bridgeport) and post-grad studies in Linguistics at various institutes.
Linguistics interested me because it is a hand-in-glove conceptual frame for Anthropology (At Fordham, Margaret Meade was the dept head, and she married Gregory Bateson at one point in her life). And, the part of Linguistics I resonated with was the exploration of our brain as our personal bio-computer. When I left IBM ('80), I started an organizational development consultation working with a linguistic instrument I created, which was based on Chomsky's Transformational Grammar. This instrument (the Language And Behavior Profile), which gave me even more insight into how our brain is so much like our computers.
In 2001, I watched a hyperactive young rugby player bounce around our living-room, and I remembered a faulty computer that was 'acting' the same way. The problem for the computer was faulty timing circuits. So, I wrote a simple program to test a person's brain timing circuits. This child had severe timing problems and these timing problems were inappropriate timing signal spikes, that caused his brain jump out of one task and into the middle of another task at random times.
So, I developed a training program which 're-wires' those faulty circuits. I took him through that training, and his random spikes reduced, his symptoms reduced, and his behavior became 'normal.' He is finishing his residency in family medicine now, and we are so proud of his achievements.
My practice with these children has been interesting, because I've also seen these children I worked with become accomplished athletes. So, I've started working with athletes to improve their timing.
If there is anything I can do to help you and your practice, just let me know,
Isabel and I were talking with Vincent yesterday and he thought that our work with timing and rhythm (as a recovery intervention for children with Developmental Disorders) might be somehow related to your work with that population.
We don't use music. And, my wife, Isabel, has a much stronger connection with spiritual threads than I do.
We do test the child's rhythmicity, which we track in each session. And, as the child's ability to maintain a steady beat improves, their symptoms reduce and their maturity improves.
Our mission is to reframe Developmental Disorders as a cultural problem which needs neither medical, psychological, nor pharmacological interventions. We see it as an environmental/cultural problem and our complete recovery rate is near 80%.
Hi Jessica, thanks for accepting my invite. As a parent of a child with a disability and a professional passionate about cause marketing, I applaud the work you're doing with people with disabilities. I'd love to speak sometime to get better acquainted with each other and explore potential synergies. Patrick