Valley View Hospital’s Holistic Harmony program spreads cheer
Crutches tucked under her tan arms, 15-year-old Rhiannon Kauffman limped into Valley View Hospital’s lobby Tuesday.But she wasn’t there for treatment.Her voice was the reason for this hospital visit.Kauffman was one of six music students who entertained a small crowd in the upper lobby for Valley View’s Holistic Harmony music program.”I want to welcome you all here, to such a beautiful spot,” said Lisa Dancing-Light, Kauffman’s vocal teacher from Carbondale. “What a nice thing to do here.”Dancing-Light opened the day’s program with “Your Song,” by Elton John. After playing the tune on the black grand piano, she spoke of a childhood filled with music that influenced a life-long career in the industry.”I wanted to bring the legacy that my mother and father gave to me,” she said.The Holistic Harmony program, now nearly four years old, is a popular draw for patients and their families.But the program is also appealing to nonpatients such as Mel Roth, an 84-year-old resident of Sunnyside Retirement Center in Glenwood Springs. A banjo and accordion player, Roth listened and tapped his foot to the beat of 12-year-old Ethan Griggs’ rendition of The Fray’s “How to Save a Life” and “Over My Head (Cable Car).”As Griggs sang and played the piano, his dad digitally recorded part of the performance on his cell phone. Amy Jackson, also a vocal student of Dancing Light’s, quietly sang along to the lyrics, “Everyone knows she’s on your mind … .”A man walked through the automatic sliding glass door pushing a woman in a wheelchair. Dennis Bader, owner of Flower Mart, stopped at the visitor information desk to make a floral delivery.As rain gently fell on the pavement outside, the piano music was the soundtrack to a normal day at the hospital.Valets parked cars. A pregnant woman, escorted by a thin man in a white T-shirt, entered the Family Birthplace.After finishing, Griggs took a bow.Jackson was next up, with her version of “Faith,” by George Michael. The petite 14-year-old Carbondale Middle School student tucked her blonde hair behind her ears and tapped her bare feet as she sang.Roth tapped his feet, too.One-by-one, students stood before the small audience seated in rocking chairs and upholstered seats. A few feet away, three women crocheted outside the Heart to Heart Gift Shop. Customers grabbing a quick cup of coffee stopped at the Mountain Brew counter.Before singing “When You Say Nothing At All,” recorded by country singers Keith Whitely and Alison Krauss, Kauffman spoke of studying under Dancing-Light since she was a fifth-grader.If her students’ performance Tuesday was any indication of her success, Dancing-Light’s legacy has been passed on to the next generation.Contact April Clark: 945-8515, ext. firstname.lastname@example.org
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