Eastern Oklahoma VA Health Care System
"Heart Strings" Concert Series to Continue in 2015
During 2015, members of the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra will continue to visit the Jack C. Montgomery VA Medical Center once a month, and perform soothing music for patients thanks to the generosity of T.D. Williamson, Inc.
The company initially sponsored the monthly “Heart Strings” concert series from October 2013 to December 2014, and decided to renew for an additional year.
“We support a lot of Veteran activities and this is just an extension of that,” said Carla Cole, Community Relations Director for T.D. Williamson, Inc. “We definitely want to support our Veterans. It’s the least we can do for the sacrifices that they made.”
On March 18, Lorelei Barton and Lise Glaser, a harpist and oboist with the Tulsa Symphony, performed music for patients in the Canteen and 5 West Inpatient Rehabilitation Unit.
Since St. Patrick’s Day was March 17, the duo played Irish and Welsh music, along with popular American songs from the 1960s.
Barton, who has performed with the symphony for nine seasons, said it’s important to play music patients can identify with.
“I think familiar songs are very important to those who are not feeling well,” said Barton. “If it’s something they can relate to, it takes their mind off of what they’re dealing with at the time. That’s important to us.”
Barton said music has been proven to help the healing process.
“It’s a proven scientific medical fact that the harp does lower the heart rate,” she said. “As the old adage says, ‘music is food for the soul.’”
Vietnam Veteran Forrest Pearish, who is undergoing Inpatient Rehabilitation treatment, got the opportunity to listen while he ate lunch and said the music was very therapeutic.
“It relaxes you,” he said. “It does cheer you up and make you feel good. I liked it.”
Army Veteran David Morse, who is also undergoing Inpatient Rehabilitation treatment, wanted to thank the musicians for visiting 5 West.
“I think it’s real cool that they would take time out of their day to come visit with some Veterans and brighten my day up a little bit,” said Morse. “I really appreciate it.”