Longwood Symphony Orchestra Provides Relief in the Form of Music
|The Longwood Symphony Orchestra performed its May 11 concert in honor of Marathon victims, families and first responders.|
With the goal of "healing the community through music," the Longwood Symphony Orchestra recently decided to give back to those affected by the Boston Marathon bombings in a unique way.
The orchestra - comprised of physicians, nurses, therapists, medical students, other care providers and research scientists from the Boston-area medical community - dedicated its May 11 concert, which was held in the New England Conservatory's Jordan Hall, to the bombing victims, families and first responders.
Violinist and BWH emergency physician Heidi Harbison Kimberly, MD, who cared for patients in the ED during the hospital's Marathon response, was part of the performance. She has been a member of the orchestra since 1999, and says she has always been cognizant of music's therapeutic abilities.
"Music can be therapeutic both for the musicians and the audience, and that is one of the unique aspects of the Longwood Symphony," said Kimberly. "We hope that the concert provided a space for the entire community to reflect and heal after the horrific tragedy at the Boston Marathon."
The program included the second suite from Ravel's ballet "Daphnis and Chloe," Mendelssohn's "Piano Concerto No. 1" with a rising young piano star, and Elgar's elegiac "Nimrod" from the "Enigma Variations" as a special tribute. The orchestra offered free tickets to staff at BWH, MGH and other area hospitals, seeking to create an opportunity for those involved to reflect on their experiences, sort through emotions and gain some peace. Kimberly said the concert turnout was excellent and the audience was especially responsive.
"Some highlights were the Mendelssohn piano concerto and the two encore pieces played by 17-year-old piano prodigy George Li," she said. "He had both the orchestra musicians and the audience captivated, and received an enthusiastic standing ovation."
Positioned at the crossroads of music and medicine, the Longwood Symphony Orchestra was established in 1982 at its home base of Jordan Hall. The orchestra's annual free DCR Hatch Shell summer performance will be August 14 at 7 p.m.