In the Media
Selected links to the SMART Lab in the media:
Ever wonder why music makes us feel such powerful emotions? How can we use music to help people living with communication deficits? Visit the SMART lab blog for lay-summaries of current research projects.
(December 08, 2021)Replacing a stiff upper lip with a song in the heart. A new campaign seeks to shift our ideas about masculinity by using music to connect men to their emotions. We spoke to Humberto Carolo and Frank Russo.
2019 - Video Links
November 2019: BRAMS – CRBLM Lecture Series : Keynote Lecture by Dr. Frank Russo
SingWell: Understanding group singing in older adults from a biopsychosocial perspective.
(December 17, 2018)More than other social activities such as team sports or card games, group singing seems to have the ability to generate feelings of social connectedness, says Dr. Frank Russo, a professor of psychology at Ryerson University.
(December 11, 2018)Reshmi Nair speaks with Dr. Frank Russo, a Professor of Psychology at Ryerson who is studying the effects of group singing, particularly in older adults with communication disorders like Alzheimers and Parkinsons.
(December 8, 2018)Looking for connection with others this holiday season? Professor Frank Russo on why it’s good for you to get out and sing your heart out with others.
2018 - Video Links
Frank Russo discusses the AMP test at ICMPC in Montreal.
Gabe Nespoli discusses his dissertation work at ICMPC in Montreal.
Sean Gilmore’s video entry to the NSERC Science, Action! Competition. His video entry featuring his research on neural entrainment received 1500 views and was listed among the top 75 entries.
Research Rounds talk by Dr. Frank Russo for the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute
(September 29, 2017)Big Break: The Acting Game is an educational app that supports social communication skills in children and teens with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Most individuals with ASD face challenges in typical social interactions. TELUS’ contribution supported: program design and delivery of the app, its development, and the creation of a program guide.
(September 29, 2017)A study underway at Toronto's Ryerson University is looking at the impact of choir participation on older adults with hearing problems.
(August 17, 2017)Researchers at Ryerson University’s SMART Lab are making more than just music. With the help of the Chang School, industry partners, and a couple of dozen or so seniors, they’re making a social impact as well.
(August 17, 2017)Can drama and music help the emotional responsiveness of children with autism? This is the question behind “Big Break: Singing and Drama” camp, a program that engages preteens and teenagers (ages 10-14) living with autism in singing, acting and movement games.
(July 20, 2017)Healthy Hearing interview with Professor Russo and graduate student Ella Dubinsky. Singing may benefit your hearing by improving the way you understand conversations which take place in noisy places— and it’s fun!
(May 31, 2017)NPR interview featuring the SMART Lab, Ella Dubinsky’s master thesis work on music and hearing loss, and the Ryerson Chang School 50+ choir. (To listen to the 8.15 minute interview, press the blue and white “play” button beside the title)
2017 - Video Links
(July 27, 2016)The Agenda in the Summer welcomes Falconer as well as Frank Russo, psychology professor and director of the SMART Lab at Ryerson University to discuss the science of tone deafness.
2016 - Video Links
July 2016: Falconer’s book “Bad Singer: The Surprising Science of Tone Deafness and How We Hear Music” examines this affliction and how it affects his passion for music. The Agenda in the Summer welcomes Falconer as well as Frank Russo, psychology professor and director of the SMART Lab at Ryerson University to discuss the science of tone deafness.
(November, 2015)Associate Professor of Psychology and Founder of the SMART lab, Frank Russo, joins Melanie Cole, MS, to discuss how music can affect your brain and body.
(November 3, 2015)“The effect of music on the brain or body depends in part on its genre,” Frank A. Russo, PhD, associate professor of psychology at Ryerson University, tells Yahoo Health.
(September, 2015)A choir of Canadians with Parkinson’s disease is helping researchers test how well the performers regain facial movement to express emotions.
Unlocking the story on development of emotion feedback technology with WaveDNA
(March 27, 2015)
The emerging field of neuroanalytics is helping us to better understand our emotional reactions. A team of researchers at Ryerson University’s SMART Lab is collaborating with WaveDNA to put these new techniques to work, gaining insights into what we feel when we listen to music.
2015 - Video Links
A new Parkinson’s study has participants literally singing its praises. A Canadian research project being done by Dr. Frank Russo and his master’s student, Esztella Vezer, is looking at a unique way to help tackle that problem — by studying a Toronto choir made up entirely of people with Parkinson’s disease.
(August 20, 2014)Several Toronto organizations have positioned themselves at a critical juncture to help children with sensory integration, emotional perception, and communication issues faced as a result of an ASD diagnosis.
(July 09, 2014)The popularity of electronic music in Ottawa is rising — as is its go-to drug, MDMA. This article, in which author David Meffe explores the local scene following the tragic death of a friend, first appeared in OTTAWA Magazine’s May issue.
University Affairs- How music affects the brain; Canadian researchers lead the way in understanding the neurological, psychological and cognitive basis of music
(January 15, 2014)Beside the front doors of the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital, perched on the south side of Mount Royal overlooking the city, is a quote from the institute’s famous founder Wilder Penfield: “The problem of neurology is to understand man himself.”
2014 - Video Links
September 2015: A choir of Canadians with Parkinson’s disease is helping researchers such as Esztella Vezer, test how well the performers regain facial movement to express emotions.
June 2015: A unique choir that we established at the SMART Lab, is testing out the idea that singing can help patients manage the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
April 2015: A group of 50+ students at Ryerson University known as the SMART Lab Singers, come together to sing by Lake Devo at Ryerson University on World Voice Day on April 16, 2015. This group was established from an undergraduate thesis that was conducted in the lab by Saul Moshé- Steinberg.
August 2014: We found that expressive signing restored the capacity for expressive speech so they created a Parkinson’s choir that meet weekly at the Royal Conservatory of Music.
CBC Music Roundup- Five classical music innovations, from Google Glass to Emoti-Chair (online feature)
(December 10, 2013)For many audience members, the appeal of the concert hall is its status as a mostly technology-free zone. Where else do crowds collectively shut off cellphones to be truly in the moment? But technology is increasingly prevalent in our lives, and its presence in the concert hall is inevitable.
Maclean’s Magazine- Let the Rhythm take Control
(September 1, 2013)
CBC Radio 1 Scientists taking new interest in music
(August 9, 2013)
CTV NEWS (National) Brain hijacked by catchy songs
March 25, 2013)
What’s up Yukon- Rekindling a passion for culture
(February 14, 2013)The students of Eliza Van Bibber School, along with numerous supportive partners, are reviving the cultural wellbeing of the community through traditional practices. It started with a music psychology student from Ryerson University in Toronto. Arla Good had the incentive to learn about the traditional music of the North.
(January 22, 2013)Nightclubs and concert venues aren’t the only places aspiring and established performers ply their trade. We take a look inside the surprisingly rich and varied seniors’ entertainment circuit.
2013 - Video Links
August 2013: Dr. Frank Russo is a member of the Communication Team at TRI. This team recognizes the importance of communication in our daily lives in which the team helps people to understand one another and to be understood.
CBC Radio 1- Creating identity through traditional song and dance in Pelly Crossing (Yukon) (December 12, 2012)
The Synapse Magazine- Frontiers of Cross-Modal Display: The Emoti-Chair as a Model Human Cochlea (September 27)
Examiner.com- Centre provides music services for special needs kids (June 23, 2012)
The Centre for Music Education & Cognition (C-MEC) is currently offering music lessons for special needs children in the greater Toronto area and is researching how these children benefit from a musical education.
The Grid TO- Toronto the Better (May 24, 2012)
CBC North- True North (April 30, 2012)
Maisonneuve Magazine – Face the Music
(Apr 2, 2012)
How can someone who passionately loves music also be a terrible singer? Tim Falconer takes up voice lessons—and discovers the surprising science of tone deafness
Studiofeed – Music and the Brain: The SMART Lab (March 2012): Why do you listen to music? If you are like thousands of other Canadians, your answer may lie in music’s perceived ability to regulate your mood – to cheer you up or to calm you down.
2012 - Video Links
December 2012: There’s growing evidence that music can help people struggling with disorders of the mind, like autism, dementia, and Parkinson’s disease. This has given us a way to see how music can help rehabilitate damaged circuitry in the brain with disease’s such as Parkinson’s.
April 2012: Arla Good, a PhD candidate in the SMART Lab, worked with a group of children from Sick Kid’s Hospital born with hearing impairments. This group of children learned to paint or play the piano by taking part in research that explores potential benefits of arts-based education for developing communication skills.
March 2012: We are trying to find out the answer that may lie in music’s perceived ability to regulate one’s mood – to cheer you up or to calm you down. But is it possible that waves traveling through the air actually hold this awesome power, the power to influence how you are feeling?
The Mark- How a piece of furniture built for the deaf kick-started a new kind of music (May 2011)
The Mark – How Music Moves Us
The Martlet (UVic)- Look, Mom: music helps you study – sort of (January 2011)
Lanarama – CBC Radio 3 -Radio interview with Dr. Frank Russo
2011 - Video Links
Nightline Dubai- Radio interview with James Piecowye on music cognition and music technology (December 2010)
Nightline Dubai- Radio interview with James Piecowye on music cognition and music technology (December 2010)
CBC Radio 1- As it happens Interview with Frank Russo (November 2010)
Ryerson Today- Local band to jam at Ryerson lab in unique research collaboration (August 2010)
Ryerson Today- Graduate research gets $245,000 boost: New MITACS program to supportfive postdoctoral fellowships (June 2010)
The Newspaper- Science Rendezvous kicks the lab door wide open. Story by Helene Goderis (May 2010)
Ryerson Today- Fun, educational research on public display during Science Rendezvous (May 2010)
2010 - Video Links
November 2010: Dr. Frank Russo is a cognitive scientist, musician, and armchair engineer. With an educational background spanning music cognition and hearing science, he is deeply interested in supporting communication of emotion in the context of music and beyond. As Director of the SMART (Science of Music, Auditory Research and Technology) Lab at Ryerson University, Frank and his colleagues have developed a chair that uses vibrotactile stimulation to bring music to deaf individuals. Research shows that deaf individuals have a physiological response to music that bears similarity to that of hearing individuals despite not having access to auditory stimulation.
Playing the pipe organ — it’s now as easy as walking. On Saturday night, some of Toronto’s most adventurous creators converge at St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, at Jarvis and Carlton Sts., to apply a cutting-edge sheen on an instrument that’s anything but modern.
Ryerson News- Sounds emotional Story by Dana Yates on Ryerson homepage featuring the SMART Lab’s program of research in music cognition (June 2009): An assistant professor in Ryerson’s Department of Psychology, Russo describes himself as a cognitive scientist, lifelong musician and armchair engineer. The Director of the SMART lab, he is interested in how humans perceive and respond emotionally to music and non-verbal sound.
Ryerson Alumni Magazine- World’s first concert for the deaf Story by Colleen Mellor about concert and development of the emoti-chair (June 2009)
National Public Radio -Net Effect Interview for ON THE MEDIA story on the influence of the internet and new media on brain and cognition (April 2009)
Fairchild Television -Feature story/interview re: Emoti-chair. Broadcast in Canada and Hong Kong (in Cantonese) (April 2009)
Earth Times- Story based on press release describes the AIRS grant. Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council supports Major New Research Initiatives (March 2009)
Emoti-Chair Concert Coverage (March 2009)
CBC (Radio1) (2009)
Paste Magazine- First rock concert for deaf people to be held in Toronto (February 2009):
Fast forward a couple decades to 2009, and the same basic process is still happening, only now, it’s a little more sophisticated. It was recently announced that Clinton’s Tavern in Toronto will hold the first rock concert for the hearing impaired on March 5 with Fox Jaws, The Dufraines and Hollywood Swank among the performers.
2009 - Video Links
March 2009: Two research teams from Ryerson University, team up to put on The Emoti-chair’s world debut at Clinton’s Tavern in Toronto. Here is one of the many media stories . . . .
Ryerson News- Ryerson profs develop Emoti-Chair: Allows deaf to feel vibrations of music and sound Article by Sarah Hayward that reports on Ontario Science Centre Exhibition (October 2008)
AT Extra / Neuromusic News– Tune in or Tune out Article featured by AT Extra (American Academy of Audiology) and the Neuromusic News (Mariani Foundation) (September 2008)
Ryerson Alumni Magazine- Mind space Story by Colleen Mellor that describes the new Bond St. Labs, highlighting the SMART lab’s infrastructure and research (April 2008)
Ryersonian- Chair rekindles love of music for deaf Article by Leigh McEachran that reports on development of the chair (October 2008)
Toronto Star- Emoti-chair’ delivers good vibrations to deaf Front-page story by Debra Black describing the development of assistive technology for music. Reprint in various Sun Media outlets (July 2008)
Ryerson Alumni Magazine- Nosh noises Summary of mini-study commissioned by Toronto Star regarding snacking in theatres (January 2008)
CBC News- Future of the landline Story by Nicole Tomlinson with interview on differences between face-to-face, landline, mobile and text-based communication (November 2007)
PSYBLOG – Music + Body Language = More Excitement (August 2007):
Seeing a band live is a much more engaging experience than listening to a recording at home. But it’s not just the atmosphere of a live event, it’s also the singer’s facial expressions and gestures which enhances our emotional experience.
Die ausgeprägte Mimik vieler Sänger während eines Auftritts ist keine reine Effekthascherei: Sie vermittelt zusätzliche Informationen über die dargebotene Musik, hat ein kanadisch-australisches Psychologenduo entdeckt.
Toronto Star – Can you speak up? We’re snacking Article by Matthew Chung with a commissioned mini-study looking at the effects of snacking on ability to hear music and speech in entertainment venues (May 2007)
Inside Popnology – Driven to Distraction Television (and web broadcast) interview with Amber MacArthur on perceptual/cognitive distraction (April 2007)
Walrus Magazine – Driven to Distraction Article by John Lorinc with interview on cognitive mechanics of distractions in our modern multimedia world. Nominated for a National Magazine Award (Science, Technology & the Environment) (April 2007)
Ottawa Citizen – Auto cellphone use causes stupidity By Richard Bercuson (Editorial). Quote regarding driver distraction (March 2007)
Ryersonian – In love and so far away Story by Tegan Forder with interview and quote regarding communication challenges of long-distance relationships (February 2007)
Toronto Observer- Porter Airlines’ “whisper” planes takeoff from the island airport Story by Philip Alves with interview concerning urban-noise concerns (September 2006):
Controversial new airline goes wheels-up, and some of the island airport’s neighbors aren’t looking forward to the racket.
NOW Magazine – Eardrums aren’t for beating Story, by Elizabeth Bromstein, Volume 25, No. 30 about changes to the urban soundscape, its impact on communication and health, and design solutions for minimizing risk (March 2006)