Mount Sinai Concerts for Patients is a series of baroque chamber music concerts at the Mount Sinai Guggenheim Atrium. They are free and open to all in the hopes of bringing comfort and beauty to the patients of Mount Sinai Hospital, and to honor the doctors and nurses who give so much to the people of New York City.
Kristin Olson, oboe, and Nadir Aslam, violin, met over their shared experience of suffering through repeated spontaneous pneumothorax (collapsed lung), and the surgery that followed. Although they had never met before, a mutual contact heard that they were each going through the same treatment at Mount Sinai and put them in touch. For Kristin, a professional oboist based in New York City, having a recurring collapsed lung was especially problematic: oboists generally need both lungs to play! Violinist Nadir Aslam had been suffering the symptoms of recurring spontaneous pneumothorax for years. The treatment is pleurodesis via VATS (video-assisted thoroscopic surgery).
Kristin had her surgery first, on August 3, 2015. She was able to coach Nadir through some of what was to be expected for his surgery a week later. Both were struck by the loneliness of the restless nights and long days of their stay. Nadir remembers hearing the soothing sounds of the piano floating up to his room from the hospital atrium and knowing immediately that he wanted to bring music to the hospital. Kristin remembers how lucky she felt to have friends and family visit as she saw some patients suffer their illnesses alone. Together, Kristin and Nadir wish to use their musical gifts to bring some comfort and beauty to the patients at Mount Sinai Hospital, and also honor the incredible level of care they each received from their surgeons, Dr. Andrea Wolf and Dr. Andrew Kaufman, and their countless heroic nurses.