On Feb. 25, patients and their families were filling up seats and waiting in the main lobby of Konkuk University Medical Center in Seoul.
Those who could not find a chair either had to stand at the back or find a spot on the second floor.
They were not there waiting to be treated at the hospital, but to take in a classical music performance by a special ensemble organized by Olympus Korea, the Korean company of the global camera and medical device maker.
Classical music has been known to be highly effective in helping patients, especially children, relax and feel less pain.
Many hospitals around the world use music therapy for such purposes and give hope to patients by inviting musicians to participate in healing efforts with their soothing music.
But it is rare for companies to come forward and actively fund and form an ensemble, and for hospitals, rather than well-known music venues, to perform classical music for patients and their families.
It was not about corporate imaging making, Olympus said, but using music to “shine a light of hope” on those undergoing difficult treatments.
“We hope that many people can experience music that has the power to heal, and find the opportunity to change their lives,” said Olympus Korea CEO Inadomi Katsuhiko.
As part of Olympus Korea’s corporate cultural responsibility program, the company’s ensemble and clarinet players with developmental disorders performed various music ranging from Academy Award winner Ennio Morricone’s “Gabriel’s Oboe” from “The Mission” to “Por Una Cabeza” from “Scent of a Woman,” starring Al Pacino.
Olympus Korea began its music healing program at hospitals in 2012. It organized a concert at Seoul National University Children’s Hospital last year.
The company said its “healing show” will continue at Seoul St. Mary’s Hospital at The Catholic University of Korea on March 27.
By Park Hyong-ki