Thursday, March 1, 2012

Boston German consul general hosts Massachusetts General Hospital Music in Medicine Program


BOSTONClaudius Conrad, MD, PhD, slowly lifted his fingers from the keys of the Steinway piano after playing the final notes of Schumann’s Kinderszenen. Moments later the standing-room-only audience at the Goethe-Institut Boston broke the silence with calls of “Encore!”

Conrad, surgeon and director of the Music in Medicine Program at the MGH and the Benson Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine, was the honored guest of Friedrich Löhr, the consul general of the Federal Republic of Germany in Boston, and presented a free “Music in Medicine” concert and lecture on Feb. 23. Conrad played the works of Chopin, Mozart and Schumann and discussed the therapeutic benefits of music as it relates to surgery – for both surgeons and their patients.

Löhr welcomed more than 140 attendees to the event, before turning the podium over to Kenneth Tanabe, MD, chief of the division of Surgical Oncology. “The scope and depth of Dr. Conrad’s talents are incredible. He is a talented surgeon, a wonderful physician, a gifted scientist, a dedicated investigator and an accomplished pianist," Tanabe says. "I sometimes think that we’ve all learned as much from him as he has learned from us. And of course one of the areas that we’ve enjoyed the most as students of Claudius is the field of music in medicine.”

Produced by G. G. Garth Music Publishing, the event was a fundraiser for the Division of Surgical Oncology at the MGH. Following Conrad’s 90-minute presentation, the audience participated in a question-and-answer period, before enjoying a reception. In addition to Löhr, other sponsors included Bay State Sound, Canvas Fine Arts, Goethe-Institut Boston, M.Steinert&Sons, Principle Pictures, Recycled Paper Printing, Inc., World Boston a World Affairs Council.

"It was an honor to give this concert lecture for the wonderful audience and Consul General Löhr at the Goethe-Institut,” Conrad said. “I was also delighted that my mentors Dr. Andrew Warshaw [surgeon-in-chief emeritus at the MGH] and Dr. Tanabe were there. I hope my presentation raised awareness about the role of music in medicine, but we have only begun to scratch the surface. With more research we can elucidate the specific effects of music in healing and apply them more scientifically."

Learm more about the Massachusetts General Hospital Music in Medicine Program.  

About the Massachusetts General Hospital
Founded in 1811, the MGH is the third oldest general hospital in the United States and the oldest and largest in New England. The 900-bed medical center offers sophisticated diagnostic and therapeutic care in virtually every specialty and subspecialty of medicine and surgery. Each year the MGH admits more than 46,000 inpatients and handles nearly 1.5 million outpatient visits at its main campus and health centers. Its Emergency Department records nearly 80,000 visits annually. The surgical staff performs more than 35,000 operations and the MGH Vincent Obstetrics Service delivers more than 3,500 babies each year. The MGH conducts the largest hospital-based research program in the country, with an annual research budget of more than $500 million. It is the oldest and largest teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School, where nearly all MGH staff physicians serve on the faculty. The MGH is consistently ranked among the nation’s top hospitals by US News and World Report.

Media contact: Colleen Marshall, Public Affairs Officer,, 617-726-0275

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