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Febuary 2013

In This Issue: 

   News Item

Good-Bye:  Van Cliburn (1938-2013)

I'm sure you remember Van Cliburn, that long, tall, Texan who won the Tschaikovsky International Piano Competition in Moscow in 1958 and was the first American ever to win this prestigious prize.  He was also the first American musician to receive a ticker-tape parade in New York City, and there has not been a musician since them to get a ticker-tape parade.  (These parades are usually reserved for athletes and astronauts!)

I remember being introduced to Van Cliburn in 1963 when I received a recording of his for my 15th birthday.  It was a fantastic recording of the Brahms' Second Piano Concerto in B-flat with Fritz Reiner and the Chicago Symphony.  On the other side was the Rachmaninoff Third Piano Concerto in d minor and every morning before school I got up an hour early to listen to one or the other of these pieces all the way through and dream of becoming a concert pianist! 

Interestingly, Cliburn began studying piano with his mother, Rildia Bee Cliburn, at age three and was playing in her student recitals by age 4.  By age 13 he won a concerto competition to play with the Houston Symphony and played the Tschaikovsky competition at that tender age.  After that, his mother decided that he needed a professional teacher and took him to Juilliard in New York City to attend master classes.  He was offered a scholarship to study in their preparatory department but adamantly refused to study piano with anyone but his mother, so they returned to Texas.  The rest is history.

Please enjoy this video, highlighting some of the accomplishments of his long career:

Click Here If Video Is Not Visible

Cliburn died yesterday at age 78 of bone cancer in Fort Worth, Texas, his home town.  He leaves many timeless recordings of the great piano repertoire.  He will be greatly missed.

   Healing Music Blog

Music and Coma:  Should you play music?

The many applications of music for healing: hospice settings, coma, stroke and rehab of all kinds. Enjoy this fabulous story:
Anna Jenkins wears a solemn expression while she gracefully plucks the strings on her harp. The notes fill the room and coat it with an aura of peace. Next to her, in a hospital bed, a patient is dying.

Jenkins is one of a handful of music therapists who volunteer at St. Francis Hospital in Federal Way.
“I usually am serious because I’m playing for people that are very sick,” Jenkins said.
The notes are dream-like and seem to float from the harp, following no recognizable melody. To play a song a person recognized would hold them in reality, Jenkins said. An unfamiliar song helps people let go.

Read More ...

    Surgical Serenity Headphone

 "New Home" for Surgical Serenity Headphones

Our new packaging has arrived.  The headphones will ship in a new heavy-duty cardboard box instead of the plastic clam shell.  The new packaging has a small magnetic lock that will keep the box closed when not in use.  It will allow you to manage inventory in less space. Shipping will improve as the plastic containers takes up more space and we shipped a lot of "air."

You will now have a quality box that we will be able to brand with your information.  Your customers and clients  will be impressed with the image.


A new Internet website is being developed. www.SurgicalSerenitySolutions.com is "live" and will be developed as the main Internet home for the headphones.  The website will have links for our individual clients and friends. It will also point our professionals, hospitals, and medical organizations to the latest research and information that is available. The new site will allow us to concentrate our efforts on a single product family while at the same time we are developing two distinct customers.

We are positioned to provide a large hospital with the expertise and personalize product quantities that they need.  At the same time we address the individual needs of a single customer.

    Surgery and Music Blog

Surgical Serenity Solutions:  Combating the Side-Effects of Anesthesia

No one wants to have surgery. No one wants to be in the hospital, but sometime you really don’t have a choice.

If you are in an automobile accident and seriously hurt, going to a hospital and having surgery might save your life when nothing else would. If you’re told you need to have a colonoscopy for diagnostic purposes or if your appendix is inflamed and in danger of bursting, you’ll want to be in a hospital.

But there is a very simple procedure that can greatly reduce the pain, anxiety and side-effects of surgery and anesthesia. That intervention is music.

Is there documentation of this? Absolutely!

Read More ...

    Brain and Music Blog

Ever Wondered what your brain looks like on music? 
It truly is fascinating!


Click Here If Video Is Not Visible

The research team showed that music engages the areas of the brain involved with paying attention, making predictions and updating the event in memory. Peak brain activity occurred during a short period of silence between musical movements—when seemingly nothing was happening.

Beyond understanding the process of listening to music, their work has far-reaching implications for how human brains sort out events in general. Their findings are published in the Aug. 2 issue of Neuron.

The researchers caught glimpses of the brain in action using functional magnetic resonance imaging, or fMRI, which gives a dynamic image showing which parts of the brain are working during a given activity. The goal of the study was to look at how the brain sorts out events, but the research also revealed that musical techniques used by composers 200 years ago help the brain organize incoming information.

Read More ...


    Alice H. Cash

For nearly two decades, I've been helping people use the music that they already love to heal their lives and increase their wellness quotient!  I am one of the world's only clinical musicologists and hold  a Masters degree in piano performance, a Ph.D. in musicology and a Master of Social Work in clinical social work.  I am also a licensed clinical social worker. I work with people and diagnoses of all kinds, enabling them to find healing, acceptance and hope.

I love performing, researching, and teaching and have put them all together in a career called "Music Medicine." 

See you next month!!

 Alice Cash        


Dr. Alice H Cash



"Using Music in the Hospital"

Dr. Alice H. Cash is often asked to share her
Grand Rounds Presentation with hospitals' doctors and staff.  Learn what is currently happening around the world and the results they are having.


"It was the easiest of all hand surgeries! I was listening to music, then a slight lull of nothing and then back to the music. Wonderfully comfortable. The best surgical experience yet. I am honored to know, worked with and utilized Dr. Cash's magnificent creation. I do hope the medical field understands the import of her invention!"

Sheryl S.
Louisville, KY




Dr. Cash will come and speak or play a recital for YOUR association, conference, university or church

Just visit our speaker information page and then let's talk!


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