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Sigma Alpha Iota presents: “Music for Patients” benefit concert

Music service organization Sigma Alpha Iota will present its second annual benefit concert Sunday to raise money for patients affected by Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. | Credit: Courtesy of Sigma Alpha Iota

Music service organization Sigma Alpha Iota will present its second annual benefit concert Sunday to raise money for patients at the Wexner Medical Center James Comprehensive Cancer Center affected by Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

Anna Baker, a third-year in music education, heads the project this year. Baker, along with third-year education majors Abby Mitchell and Sam Zelnik, came up with the idea of the benefit concert last year after Mitchell’s mother passed away from Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2015.

Baker said she decided to lead the project this year because she wanted to do something for people who might be going through Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

“In times like this, you feel helpless, and I hate the idea of other people feeling helpless,” she said. “I can’t imagine how much pain people are feeling … I want to do what I can to help that.”

Baker said last year’s inaugural benefit concert, with involvement of people from the James raised over $5,000.

“My goal for this year is for it to be even bigger and for it to be even more amazing,” she said.  

This year, the concert will feature more than 50 School of Music students and professors. Michael Bednarsky, a fourth-year in music education, will be participating as a conductor of student-run organization Buckeye Philharmonic Orchestra.

For the benefit concert, the orchestra will be playing a piece written by Scott Turner, a fifth-year in music education. Turner said he wrote the piece for his father, who recently lost his battle with cancer.

“It’s really special to know that there’s something that I can do that might bring an ounce of healing to [Turner], something that might provide an outlet to him,” Bednarsky said.

Baker and Bednarsky said coming to the concert, listening to and interacting with the musicians is one way students can support the event, but there are several ways to help the cause.

“If you can show up, show up,” Bednarsky said. “Even if you can’t financially donate to the event, attendance in itself is showing support for not just for the concert and the performers, but for the people and the lives the concert aims to help.”

The concert will take place on Sunday at 3 p.m. in Weigel Auditorium. Admission is free, but donations are welcome.  

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