Meet our Therapists
Calli Puko, MT-BC
Calli is a board certified Music Therapist and helped pioneer the Creative Melodies program . She earned her Bachelors of Science degree in Music Therapy and a minor in Psychology from The State University of New York at Fredonia and completed her internship at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital. Within her internship experience, she worked with with children and adolescents aged 6 weeks to 18 years old with diagnoses including leukemia, aplastic anemia, and trauma.
Calli has launched and implemented numerous Creative Melodies programs and has been a fundamental leader in demonstrating and communicating the Creative Melodies mission. Inspired by the relationships that she has formed with the children at the childcare and learning centers, Calli has been creating specialized series that can be tailored to each child’s abilities and goals. Following the Creative Melodies’ humanistic approach, Calli implemented clinical Music Therapy services with adolescent behavioral health facilities and with children and adults with intellectual disabilities.
Calli respects and praises her clients for their unique ideas and abilities, and values them no matter their situation or diagnosis. Through her Music Therapy practice, she provides a safe space for clients to express their individuality and make their voices heard. Music changed Calli’s life, so she uses Music Therapy to change others’ lives and help them reach their fullest potential.
Bryan Burgess is an aspiring Art Therapist who recently received his Master’s degree in Clinical and Mental Health counseling with a focus in Art Therapy from Edinboro University. He completed his internship training at The Bradley Center, where he currently continues to counsel youth who experience trauma, mental illness, and behavioral challenges. While he is closely concluding this academic journey, Bryan’s goal is to apply for his provisional art therapy (ATR) credentialing and receive the needed supervision and hours of experience to become a registered Art Therapist and board certification.
Bryan has previously worked for Children Hospital of Pittsburgh driving the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile that focused on providing lower income neighborhoods with free medical care. Bryan communicated with local community services, mentored youth, and cared for families as they received their much needed medical assistance.
Through his education in Masters in Counseling with a focus in Clinical and Mental Health and Art Therapy, Bryan will be able to offer many variables in creating a safe space environment that will allow clients a cathartic presence. His creative passion for art and life experiences has empowered him to support his clients and offer them the opportunity to gain clarification of their life’s journey through the therapeutic benefits of art and counseling practices. When Bryan is not helping youth develop effective cognitive and emotional skills to increase mindfulness, you’ll find him spending time with his wife and kids.
Haley Welsh, MT-BC
Haley Welsh is the founder and director of Creative Melodies. As a clinical Music Therapist, Haley pioneered and developed multiple Music Therapy programs including services at community homes for residents with intellectual and physical disabilities and at a children’s inpatient rehabilitation unit. Haley values a collaborative approach with other members of the treatment team to reinforce their goals with individual/group music therapy sessions to children and adolescents that were diagnosed with TBI, physical disabilities, developmental disabilities, and behavioral health. Haley also specialized in working with individuals with Prader-Willi Syndrome, where she incorporated Music Therapy into their daily routine and their group therapy schedule. As well as a flourishing professional career in Music Therapy, Haley is a proud mother of three children and it is them who inspired her to create the Creative Melodies program.
Allyssa Heitzenrater, MT-BC
Allyssa Heitzenrater is a Board Certified Music Therapist who received her Bachelor of Science in Music Therapy with a minor in Psychology from Duquesne University, and completed her internship at Broome Tioga BOCES. Allyssa has previously worked in skilled nursing facilities, behavioral health facilities, schools, and daycare centers to help people increase their quality of life, learn coping skills, and achieve their social/emotional goals. While she has had the opportunity to work with people across the lifespan, Allyssa has a particular passion for sharing music experiences with young children. Their creativity and energy inspires her to continue growing and learning every day. When Allyssa is not thinking of ways to foster growth for young minds, you’ll find her drinking coffee and fostering growth for her jungle of houseplants.
Ryssa Ezykowsky is a Music Therapist who graduated from Duquesne University with a bachelor of science in Music Therapy. She recently completed her 6-month internship with Creative Melodies, and is overjoyed to be a part of the Creative Melodies team. Ryssa's previous work experience within a childcare center inspired her to use music to help foster personal growth within the learning centers that team with Creative Melodies. Through Creative Melodies, Ryssa is part of the Habilitation Services Team at The Verland Foundation where she uses Music Therapy to enhance the quality of lives for people with Intellectual disabilities. Ryssa strives to create an inclusive environment within music that focuses on clients strengths and abilities. She feels that music can bring out the best in people, which can then generalize into their everyday lives.
Ryssa is working towards becoming board certified by early 2023, and can't wait to continue to grow as a Music Therapist. When she's not working hard and making music, Ryssa enjoys listening to folk, 70s, and 80s music, reading, and crafting.