Music And Light, How It Affects The Human Brain

We’ve seen a lot of great concerts and they were great for all other reasons. For example, Michael Bublé was a brilliant performer, and he brought nostalgia to a rat pack that was born too young. On the other hand, MxPx was my favorite band in my teens. The show was great because it was an opportunity to see Mike Herrera on stage and in person. And because everyone in the audience shouted with all the words from Chris Carrabba’s mouth, the Dashboard Confessional was great.

In these events, the most favored is the concert itself, not the band or the perfect performance of the singers. It’s all about the experience that compares to no other events. The mix of great lights, cool music, great sound, and people having fun is perhaps something that lifts anyone to another dimension. The experience is one thing you will always remember.

How music and lighting complement each other

Watch professional music festival and stage lighting show. Witness how both elements complement each other. See video from YouTube below.

The ability to fully represent the experience of the concert can be something alluding. Scientists have studied the influence of music and light on us and discovered several reasons for this impact. For instance, when you get that kind of chill when listening to a piece of certain music, this reaction is referred to as frissons. This is caused by dopamine flooding the body. The simple fact that a subjective process like music triggers the release of dopamine to the brain is basic in human biology.


Recent research which was published in the journal of social cognitive and emotional neuroscience tests these “frissons” to see why the concert is causing this reaction. The research found that people responding to emotional music possess more nerve fibers in the brain. These nerve fibers connect the “auditory cortex” and the “anterior cortex.” This simply means that they are more connected to the sound through the emotional processes of the brain.


Lighting designers of industrial pendant lights will tell you that lighting also has an effect to people. Science will prove these designers right. For instance, a research conducted in 2014 at the Liège University (University of the Liege) determined exceptional photoreceptor microscopic cells in the eyes. These cells were referred to as melanopsin which tie the light sensation towards the non-visual units of the human brain.

Once light sets off a response in the melanopsin photoreceptors, different brain functions take place. The changes in light in fact trigger us to concentrate considerably better and even more evidently. This is how our body actually functions.

It’s apparent that music and light creates a huge impact on us in all emotional levels. And these responses are what light designers and sound engineers are working on to help us express our physiological and emotional responses.