Prima Ballerina With Dementia Dances Again After Hearing “Swan Lake.”

Dementia can take a lot from a person and their loved ones, but some memories are so ingrained in our minds that they’ll never fully leave us.


In her youth, Marta C. Gonzalez was an accomplished ballerina who danced on stages around the world. In the 1960s, she was even the prima ballerina for the New York Ballet!

Before she passed away in 2019, Marta developed Alzheimer’s and was living in a care facility in Valencia, Spain. Her memories were largely lost to the advancing disease, yet when a Spanish charity called Música para Despertar visited her, they were delighted to see latent memories of her glorious career resurface before their eyes.

Through headphones, they played her part of “Swan Lake” by Tchaikovsky. As she heard the familiar tune, her arms drifted up – almost by their own accord – and flowed slowly through the movements as if she had just performed that very day. Fluttering her arms, Marta made her passion for the craft clear, and it is breathtaking!

Music has a powerful ability to bring back even the most distant memory. Watch the beautiful moment play out in the video below, and don’t forget to share this story.

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