Friday, July 10, 2009

Global Music-Medicine Project

A note from my virtual friend Mohan Sundararaj about a new project called The Global Music-Medicine Project, whose goal is "to globalize evidence-based music therapy," especially in developing countries.

While music is not the cure, we do believe that it barely takes its rightful role within humanity, global policy or medicine beyond candid and superficial discussions.


Lachlan Forrow, MD, FACP said...

Paul: I met Sohan at HSPH just before graduation when I was over there regarding the Albert Schweitzer Award we give each year at commencement to the graduating student who, during his or her time at the school, most embodied Dr. Schweitzer's ethic of Reverence for Life and his insistence that "my life is my argument." He's very, very inspiring, and he and I are starting to talk about connecting his work with what we (BIDMC-based Albert Schweitzer Fellowship) and the Longwood Symphony Orchestra (LSO) are doing. Lisa Wong (LSO President) and I are in Aspen for music and other celebrations of the 60th anniversary of Dr. Schweitzer's historic visit to the then-almost-unknown small mining town of Aspen -- he's kind of a patron saint (well, absolutely not a "saint"!) here. As many know, music was a central force in Dr. Schweitzer's life, and we will announce tomorrow a new "Aspen-Schweitzer Music Fellows" dimension of our U.S. Schweitzer Fellows Program. My article in today's Aspen paper is below.


This week’s Aspen celebrations of the 60th anniversary of Dr. Albert Schweitzer’s visit are reconnecting the U.S.-based Albert Schweitzer Fellowship (ASF) with its historic Aspen ties, and Aspen with the Schweitzer roots of the Aspen Idea.


On Monday’s exact 60th anniversary of Dr. Schweitzer’s July 6, 1949 Goethe Address, the Aspen Chapel hosted the premiere of Albert Schweitzer: Memoirs of Africa, a one-man play by Thurston Moore, with Tom Dolan as Schweitzer.

Tomorrow’s Schweitzer/Bach concert at 5:30 pm at the Chapel features the Aspen premiere of Albert Schweitzer Portrait, modeled after Copland’s Lincoln Portrait. Sunday’s Schweitzer-themed worship service at the Chapel will include reflections on Schweitzer’s legacy today and more Bach.

Starting this fall, ASF and the Aspen Music Festival and School will recruit music students across the country for a new Schweitzer-spirited service track at AMFS, and for year-long music-centered service projects in their home communities as ASF-sponsored Schweitzer Fellows. Over 2,000 U.S. physicians, nurses, and other health-related professionals are already Schweitzer Fellows, supporting each other on lifelong paths of Schweitzer-spirited service in the U.S., Africa, and beyond. Nearly 250 new Fellows are selected annually from over 100 of the nation’s leading health professional schools. In Africa, the Albert Schweitzer Hospital will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2013 as a leader in confronting malaria, HIV/AIDS, and TB, and improving maternal/child health.

Schweitzer’s legacy of service, music, environmental responsibility, and peace all flow from his belief that experiencing and expressing a reverence for all life is the basis of all true ethics, and the source of the deepest possible human satisfaction. We welcome everyone to join us at the Aspen Chapel this weekend, and in building ever-stronger Aspen-Schweitzer links in the years ahead.

For more information on Schweitzer’s legacy today, visit and the ASF blog “Beyond Boulders” at

Lachlan Forrow, MD is President of The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship, and Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

ravin said...

i agree

Joanne Loewy DA, LCAT, MT-BC said...

How wonderful that the Schweitzer Fellowship exists. I remember being inspired by Schweitzer when I reported on his life and legacy in grammer school. Congrats to Mohan. His global effort to expand evidenced- based research and practice is a much needed, long awaited effort!