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ALIVE INSIDE is a joyous cinematic exploration of music's capacity to reawaken our souls and uncover the deepest parts of our humanity. Filmmaker Michael Rossato-Bennett chronicles the astonishing experiences of individuals around the country who have been revitalized through the simple experience of listening to music. His camera reveals the uniquely human connection we find in music and how its healing power can triumph where prescription medication falls short.

This stirring documentary follows social worker Dan Cohen, founder of the nonprofit organization Music & Memory, as he fights against a broken healthcare system to demonstrate music's ability to combat memory loss and restore a deep sense of self to those suffering from it. Rossato-Bennett visits family members who have witnessed the miraculous effects of personalized music on their loved ones, and offers illuminating interviews with experts including renowned neurologist and best-selling author Oliver Sacks (Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain) and musician Bobby McFerrin ("Don’t Worry, Be Happy").

An uplifting cinematic exploration of music and the mind, ALIVE INSIDE's inspirational and emotional story left audiences humming, clapping and cheering at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Audience Award.


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The Filmmakers

Michael Rossato-Bennett Director

Michael Rossato-Bennett is the founder and executive producer of Projector Media, a documentary production company dedicated to inspiring conversations that interrogate issues related to our cultural consciousness. ALIVE INSIDE: A STORY OF MUSIC & MEMORY is Rossato-Bennett's first feature-length offering. Projector Media has several documentaries in various stages of production in addition to Alive Inside. Each of those projects is inspired by Rossato-Bennett's dedication to the collective well-being of society.

Festivals & Awards

Sundance Film Festival


Winner - Audience Award, U.S. Documentary Competition

Boulder Film Festival


Winner - Special Award

Berkshires Film Festival


Winner - Audience Award


Gloriously inspirational...A magical, non-medical story of healing.”

-The Hollywood Reporter

An affecting look at a growing therapeutic cause.”


It’s as transformative as the music itself.”