Recent Event

March 10, 2015

Event poster image Click to view full size poster

A Spring Concert at
The Peter Jay Sharp Theater
at Juilliard
Music and Medicine Orchestra
Yuga Cohler, conductor

Music and Medicine Orchestra
Yuga Cohler, conductor

Paul Frucht – Emergent Machine (World Premiere)
Tchaikovsky – Romeo and Juliet Overture
Rachmaninoff – Piano Concerto No. 2 (Dedicated to Dr. Nikolai Dahl)
with soloist Richard Kogan, MD

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he Music and Medicine Initiative

Medical students typically excel in science, but many are also gifted in music. The Weill Cornell Medical College family includes musicians with a wide range of experiences, from serious amateurs to conservatory-trained professionals. All share a passionate pursuit of the expression of beauty and perfection through music.

Musicians may turn to a career in medicine for a variety of reasons. But once medical students, they often find that their passion for musical exploration seamlessly translates into the pursuit of medical knowledge. These students begin to think of their medical training as another form of art.

With this in mind, the Music and Medicine Initiative at Weill Cornell Medical College—spearheaded by David A. Shapiro, MD, and Richard Kogan, MD, and supported by a generous gift from the Block Family Foundation—allows medical students to continue to enjoy their musical life. The program emphasizes continued academic excellence with the added opportunity for students to practice music as a balance to a busy academic life.

Supporting the Student Musician

The Music and Medicine Initiative provides medical students with the resources necessary to continue their exploration in music, including:

  • Musical and medical mentors
  • Collaborators
  • Performance opportunities
  • Rehearsal space and equipment

Current videos


August 2, 2013
Music (and Musicians) Everywhere
In addition to the therapeutic benefits music provides, music also brings joy to the maker. (Perhaps that’s why music is “played”?) Just ask a few of the MSKCC employees who consider their time well spent when they join with colleagues from MSKCC and other area medical institutions to play and sing with the Music and Medicine Orchestra and Chorus.
Read More

August 2, 2013
The Practice of More than One Art
The Weill Cornell Music and Medicine Initiative
Read More

October 2, 2012
City Doctors Form New Music and Medicine Chorus and Orchestra
Read More on DNAinfo

October 1, 2012
Unique Orchestra Marries Music, Medicine For A Clinic's Benefit
Read More on NY1

On Music and Medicine:
A Performance by
L'Ensemble Médical

Dr. Richard Kogan explores the connection between the mental illness and the creative genius of classical composers.

March 19, 2011
The Mind and Music of George Gershwin
Washington Psychiatric Society

Music as Medicine

Through Weill Cornell's affiliation with NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, the students and faculty of the Music and Medicine Initiative are developing partnerships to integrate music into medical practice. Our students have performed for patients and families in:

  • Monthly Caregivers' Concert at the Ronald Perelman Heart Center
  • Cancer Survivors' Celebration at Weill Cornell Cancer Center

Music in the Community

Bringing music to the Weill Cornell and New York City community is a vital part of our mission. Events have included:

  • Benefit concerts for GHESKIO, Kokoro no Care, and Weill Cornell Community Clinic
  • Weill Cornell ceremonies, including graduation at
    Carnegie Hall
  • Coffeehouse events for the Weill Cornell student body

Lectures and Seminars

Informational events allow students and members of our academic community to explore the relationship between music and medicine. Recent topics have included:

  • Historical perspectives on music and medicine
  • Music therapy for inpatient care
  • The science of musical phenomena like absolute pitch and synesthesia

Projects in the Works

  • Formal semester-long elective for medical students
  • Research opportunities in music and medicine
  • Formation of an institutional orchestra and chorus
  • Collaboration with Music That Heals and Music for Autism

The Art of Collaboration

In addition to working with medical departments at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital and Weill Cornell Medical College, the Music and Medicine Initiative has built relationships with some of the world's foremost musical institutions, which provide our students with unique opportunities for mentorship, partnership, and growth. In return, we provide specialized medical care to their musicians and organize seminars on performing arts medicine targeted towards musicians.

Students and faculty of The Juilliard School have partnered with WCMC to shape the Music and Medicine Initiative. Juilliard faculty members volunteer as coaches, and students at the two schools often collaborate to organize and perform at events.

We also collaborate with the 92nd Street Y, which provides quiet rehearsal rooms for our students. We are always seeking new partners to expand our initiative, so please contact us if you have ideas about how Music and Medicine can be a part of your program or organization.

Becoming the Best

Medical college admissions officers compete to recruit the best and brightest applicants. When students are considering a medical school, many factors contribute to their final decision.


Weill Cornell Medical College is fortunate to already have many attractive elements: its location in Manhattan, commonly called the cultural capital of the world; large and diverse faculty, student and patient populations; a Problem-Based Learning curriculum that focuses on student discovery; and one of the country's leading global medicine programs, with a campus in Qatar and a unique education and clinical training program at the Weill Bugando Center in Tanzania.


The Music and Medicine Initiative serves as another factor to attract students who want to pursue a career in medicine but do not want to sacrifice their love of music. While the Medical College will continue to attract the brightest and most intellectually curious students, the Music and Medicine Initiative seeks to attract musically creative applicants, who can matriculate knowing that their interest in music will be supported throughout their academic career at Weill Cornell.


An Investment in Creativity

Weill Cornell's Music and Medicine program is an entirely privately funded initiative undertaken by our faculty and students. We believe strongly that the program will enhance the medical college experience for our students, and that it will also be of great benefit to the Weill Cornell community at large.


Music and Medicine relies on the generosity of friends and patrons to underwrite its programs and mission. Involvement is possible at various levels, and every dollar raised is directed to the program and its success.


For more information on how you can become involved, or to learn how you can support this important program, please contact David A. Shapiro, MD, Program Chairman, at (212) 534-3448. You may also contact Weill Cornell Medical College's Office of Development at (646) 962-8720, to make a donation or request more information about supporting this unique program.

Dr. David A Shapiro, Chairman
Dr. Richard Kogan, Vice Chairman and Artistic Director
Dr. Joseph Murray, Academic Coordinator

Advisory Board

Jack D. Barchas, MD
Charles Bardes, MD
Barry Coller, MD
Harvey Klein, MD
Larry Norton, MD
Stephen Paget, MD
Zev Rosenwaks, MD
Thomas Sculco, MD
David Skorton, MD
Michael Stewart, MD, MPH
Hazel Szeto, MD, PhD

Student Committee

Philip Colucci (3rd year)
Nikkan Das (2nd year)
Jenna Devare (4th year)
Brian Fidali (2nd year)
Benjamin Jack (4th year)
Amy Kwon (2nd year)
William Maguire (MD-PhD)
Patrick McGuire (Juilliard)
Tiffany Peng (4th year)
Michelle Siao (MD-PhD)
Meredith Treaster (Juilliard)
Mike Wei (2nd year)

Friends and Faculty Committee

Robert E. Accordino, MD, MSc
Peter Block, Vice President, Block Family Foundation
Josh Levinger, MD
Laura Liberman, MD
Cantor Joseph Malovany
Ittai Shapira, Violinist, Artistic Consultant
Vincent P. de Luise, MD
Colin and Eric Jacobsen, Artistic Directors, The Knights

For more information about the Music and Medicine Initiative,
please contact Program Coordinator Nancy Amigron, or (646) 962-5441.

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