Professor Denise Grocke

Director of Avalon GIM Training (Australia)

Denise Grocke is a qualified music therapist and a Fellow and Primary Trainer with the Association for Music and Imagery in the US. She studied level 1 GIM with Linda Keiser Mardis and Alison Short, and Level 2 and 3 with Madeleine Ventre at the Creative Arts Institute, New York, becoming a GIM Fellow in 1993, and a Primary Trainer in 1995. She brings 25 years experience as a GIM practitioner and researcher to her teaching. Her philosophy of the Bonny Method of GIM is grounded in the psycho-therapeutic framework, based on Rogerian principles of client-centered therapy, and coupled with an emphasis on music as the primary catalyst for a multitude of experiences in the Bonny Method of GIM.


Denise has witnessed the profound effect that the Bonny Method of GIM can have on people who seek personal growth and change, healing from wounds of childhood and adulthood, as well as applications in the medical field, such as in palliative care, mental health, and other applications. Denise completed a PhD dissertation on the topic of Pivotal Moments in GIM, analyzing the interview transcripts of clients and therapists as they described memorable experiences and the impact on their lives, and she analysed the music that underpinned that change.


From 1980-2012 Denise was head of the music therapy program at the University of Melbourne, and established the National Music Therapy Research Unit, and the International Consortium of Music Therapy Research Universities. She has published widely in both music therapy and GIM, and is editor of Guided Imagery and Music: The Bonny Method and Beyond, 2nd edition, 2019, co-editor of Music Imagery and Guided Imagery and Music for Individual and Group Therapy, and co-author of Receptive Methods of Music Therapy.


She co-founded the Australian Music Therapy Association and the Music and Imagery Association of Australia. From 1999-2002 she was President of the World Federations of Music Therapy, and in 2016 she was made an Officer in the Order of Australia (AO) for her services to music therapy and professional organisations.

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