Creative Minds Music Therapists

Creative Minds Music Therapists

Antonietta (Toni) Mongillo Desideri, MMT, MTA


Antonietta (Toni) is one of Creative Minds Music Therapists who works with children and adults to achieve various therapeutic goals, including those of a physical, cognitive, emotional and spiritual nature.

Toni believes in the importance of relationships and the creative self in one’s health and well-being. Music can reach parts of oneself in the most natural of ways, and can be used effectively as a tool tailored for many needs. Music is the most “flexible” of means and it can help in many ways!

Toni has worked in various areas, including early intervention, developmental disabilities, trauma (working abroad in Bosnia, Herzegovina), mental health/emotions awareness/management, bereavement, geriatrics/dementia, VAW/Women and Children’s Shelters, and refugees.  Most recently, she is working at the Hospital for Sick Children, in  haematology/oncology, trauma, burns, palliative care and general surgery.

Toni continues to have a passion for creating new opportunities for music therapy services in the community. She founded Creative Minds Music Therapy in 2010, and continues to commit to this endeavour.

Toni holds a Masters of Music Therapy from Wilfrid Laurier University.

Creative Minds Music Therapists

Shirley Khalil, MMT, MTA, FAMI

Shirley is a Creative Minds Music Therapists who works with children and adults to help enhance cognitive and physical skills, nurture emotional and social development, and provide a space for creative and authentic expression.

Shirley believes that, as humans, we are all inherently musical. Music is easily accessible, and can be used in a variety of ways to help clients work through day to day challenges. Clients also find new ways of communicating and interacting with others and the world around them in their work with Shirley.

For the first eight years of her practice, Shirley supported adults in long-term care settings. Current clientele includes children with various developmental delays, Autism Spectrum Disorder, and adults with various physical and developmental challenges.

Shirley is a Certified Music Therapist (MTA) with the Canadian Association of Music Therapists. She is also a Fellow of the Association for Music and Imagery (FAMI).
Shirley holds a Masters Degree in Music Therapy from Wilfrid Laurier University.

Daniel Allen, MTA, MT-BC

Daniel became an accredited music therapist since 2015 after successfully completing his Bachelor of Music Therapy (BMT) degree at Wilfrid Laurier University in 2014.  Daniel applies a developmental approach to music therapy, and uses this approach to help his clients achieve their developmental goals in areas such as speech, movement, cognition, and socialization. While he has worked primarily with infants, children, and adolescents, he has also facilitated music therapy sessions for individuals in long term care centres and in correctional institutions.  Daniel spent the past three years working for various families and services in Kitchener-Waterloo.  He relocated to Durham Region in 2018 upon completing his Master of Music Therapy (MMT) degree.

Daniel is also an experienced instructor of group and individual adapted music lessons.  He enjoys helping his students learn music in a way that suits their unique styles of learning.  He believes that anyone can be successful with music if the right method of instruction is developed.

Daniel’s two primary instruments are the guitar and trombone.  He studied the trombone during his undergraduate training.  During this time, he was a member of the “Brasstic Measures” brass quintet, and performed with the Guelph Symphony Orchestra in their 2013 season finale.  On guitar, Daniel has been involved in numerous musical projects in both Waterloo Region and in Lindsay where he grew up.  Daniel also plays the piano, ukulele, banjo, drums, and bass, and is always looking to learn new instruments!

Music Therapy