Healing Arts

Healing Arts helps our patients


Healing is more than getting quality medical care — it’s about the heart, the mind and the spirit. We understand that during a patient’s most difficult moments, art can be a source of inspiration, comfort and strength. Since 2008, Renown has installed 1,500 original works of art and 1,500 fine art posters to enhance our healing environments. You can view all original works of art on our online gallery.

Online Gallery

Learn More about the Healing Arts Program

Music at the Bedside

Our bedside musician program began in 2007 with our resident musicians playing at various Renown Health locations. Music has a positive impact on patients leaving them feeling happier and healthier than they were before. Grants from the Nevada Arts Council are made possible through appropriations from the State of Nevada and the National Endowments for the Arts.

Music Therapy

Music Therapy is the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals with a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program.

Pet Therapy

The healing power of a visit from a furry friend is demonstrated through our Pet Therapy Program, which began in 1997. Our registered and certified pet therapy dogs visit patients at various Renown Health locations. Meet our pet therapy dogs and see how they are making a difference in our patients’ lives on our Pawsitive Pals Pinterest Board.

Healing Arts Performances

Concerts and live theatrical performances at Renown Regional and Renown South Meadows Medical Center are made available at no charge to the public. The Healing Arts Performance Series is made possible thanks to a partnership and grant with the City of Reno Arts and Culture Division.

Performance Calendar

Healing Arts Contributors


Colin Ross

Nevada Arts Council Artist, Composer and multi-instrumentalist Colin Ross plays a large and ever-shifting repertoire of original music, jazz standards and blues classics. Beginning with classical piano at the age of five, Colin has continued to study and grow throughout his career, playing a variety of instruments and styles.

As part of the Healing Arts program at Renown and in collaboration with Sierra Arts Foundation, Colin plays a variety of instruments weekly in group and bedside settings for patients across the health system.


Melissa Taylor

Melissa Taylor absolutely loves getting to spend some time making music in the Children's Healing Garden every Friday. She holds a BA in Theatre Performance from Stockton University and will be graduating with an MA in Arts Administration from Rowan University later this year. As Managing Director of Reno Little Theater she sees firsthand the ways in which art can touch lives & she's happy that her little red ukulele helps put smiles on little faces every week.

Sheila De Salvo

Sheila de Salvo is a third generation Nevadan, born and raised in Reno. She attended Washoe County public schools and as a young adult, audited ceramic classes at the University of Nevada, Reno. She taught ceramics for a number of years at the Washoe County Senior Center and at privately owned ceramic shops. Sheila has always had a passion for working with seniors, children and people with disabilities, and has taken a variety of mental health courses at Truckee Meadows Community College. As director of Storey Counter Senior Center she organized and participated in weekly art classes. She is an accomplished watercolorist, having worked in this medium for the past twenty years. Prior to retiring, she worked for ten years with people with disabilities. Now Sheila shares her passion for the arts through Art for All Nevada, teaching people with mental health issues as well as those with disabilities and the youth.


Lorelei Neft

Lorelei Neft is entering her senior year at UNR as a Community Health Science, Public Health major and with two minors in Womens' Studies and the Spanish Language. Growing up active in the arts and always expanding on her passions in healthcare made Healing Arts Therapy a perfect match. Lorelei has been working at Renown Skilled Nursing for over a year creating stimulating, creative and recuperating art projects. For some patients it could mean painting and drawing, for others it could simply be jammin' out to music and getting their nails painted. Lorelei hopes to eventually work towards normalizing Art Therapy in traditional hospital settings as well as overseeing bioethics and medical humanities in healthcare systems.

Artists Not Pictured:
Desi Barrett
Joan Garret
Kelsey Sweet

Music Therapists
Note-Able Music Therapy Services provides music therapy as part of our Patient Enrichment Program (PEP), on the pediatric unit, pediatric intensive care unit, by referral, and as a part of our oncology support group. Music therapists help patients reduce anxiety, alleviate pain, increase motor control, release emotion, identify coping skills, and improve mood by listening and participating in live music. When appropriate, music therapists co-treat with other therapists (physical, occupational and speech) by facilitating therapeutic modalities with live music, which is motivating to patients and provides distraction from physical pain and fear. Music therapists modify their interactions to meet the needs of the patients and their families, helping people to connect with their own sense of well-being.

Jodi McClaren

Jodi McClaren

Manal Toppozada

Manal Toppozada

Art at the Bedside

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Working with artists from Sierra Water Color Society and Arts for All Nevada as well as individual artists is provided at various Renown Health locations. Patients are able to create a piece of art that will go home with them when they are discharged. In many cases, patients have been able to renew a long forgotten skill or discover new skills.

Healing Gardens

Providing strength and peace for all who visit, Renown Regional Medical Center features two Healing Gardens. Fianna’s Healing Garden offers medicinal plants, original sculptures and artwork, and a serene environment designed to promote patient healing and comfort.

Tour Fianna’s Healing Garden

The John & Sue Dermody Children’s Healing Garden provides children and their families a sanctuary outside of the hospital, featuring play structures, colorful outdoor art, picnic tables and benches and an indoor Teen and Kids’ Zone with a computer and reading corner. Patients and their families can enjoy a quiet place made just for them.

Tour John and Sue Dermody Children's Healing Garden

Join us for Music and Stories in the Garden, Fridays from 2 - 3 p.m.

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Creating a Healing Garden at Home

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“My belief is that nature is the most healing element in our environment, it brings us to a more natural and comfortable place within ourselves.” ~Fianna Dickson Comb

Incorporate nature into your healing process by learning how to make your own healing garden. Feeling better involves more than the traditional idea of medicines and hospitals. In fact, studies show a healing and peaceful environment can add significantly to recovery. Findings illustrate that patients exposed to art and nature require fewer drugs, spend less time in the hospital, and have improved mental health.

If you or a loved one is recovering from or is living with an illness or an injury, you can incorporate some of the theories of Fianna’s Healing Garden into your home environment. As you develop ideas for your own healing garden, walk through the following steps to help get you started:

  • How do you plan to use the garden? Identify what your needs are for the space.
  • Plan a comfortable seating area for you to relax and enjoy the environment you created.
  • Consider what symbolic elements or objects you may want to include, such as water in a fountain, garden artwork or other focal points.
  • In addition to your favorite plants, consider adding some medicinal plants or herbs to your garden like Echinacea, Lavender or Chamomile.

Don’t forget to make time to enjoy your garden. During potentially difficult times, small yet meaningful enhancements in a healing environment offer opportunities for reflection and encouragement.


UNSOM Artist in Residence Program Elective

The Artist in Residence Program, a partnership between Renown Health, Sierra Arts, and the University of Nevada School of Medicine, is dedicated to connecting fourth year medical school students with the power of the arts. This program supports the integration of the arts, including literary, performing and visual arts and design with the student experience in healthcare and community settings for therapeutic, educational, and expressive purposes.


A Community Partnership

Our Healing Arts Program is made possible thanks to our community partners:

If you are interested in supporting the Healing Arts Program at Renown Health, please contact the Renown Health Foundation at 775-982-5545.

If you would like more information regarding Renown Healing Arts programs or to learn how you can get involved, please contact Danae Lear, Service Excellence Liaison at 775-982-4768 or dlear@renown.org.

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