«Only through music can suffering be healed.»
With his harp, musician and composer ANDREAS VOLLENWEIDER has created his own unconventional and unique world of sound. He surprises again and again with new ideas, and the typical “Vollenweider Sound” has become a world-famous trademark with which he has celebrated international triumphs. The artist entered fascinating new territory with a very special project: At the request of a research group at the University Hospital of Geneva, which studies the brain development of extremely premature babies, Andreas Vollenweider developed music that they listen to at precisely determined times. The first results show a significant improvement in brain development and at the same time the relaxing effect on the babies who are exposed to great stress in their situation. Andreas Vollenweider explains
“It’s not really a secret, but regrettably still an underestimated phenomenon: Music can lead us into our deepest inner being, into the deep layers of our soul, into the bedrock of our subconscious. And just as every disturbance and every illness has its origins here, every healing process also begins in this depth. Music that is built on a consistently positive, harmonising effect can activate an incredibly rich world of positive inner images and feelings here, which in turn can trigger and support complex healing processes.
Painting, visual arts, dance and literature are also able to unleash the most important of our human abilities, our imagination. It is, then, the central force in recovery; if we cannot imagine being or becoming healthy and happy, the road is rocky and difficult… Art therapy should therefore take a central role in all areas of human medicine, as well as in research.”
© Julia Wesely
The cellist SOL GABETTA has made a name for herself with numerous international guest appearances. She also teaches at the music academy in Basel and started the SOlsberg chamber music festival.
“As a cellist I am familiar with the emotional power and relaxing effect of music and feel a friendly relationship to the ART-THERAPIE Foundation and its causes.”
“Music is an essential element, particularly for stressed people. I experience this myself directly with my handicapped sister. She is happy and is immediately calmer when she hears me practising. The melody takes all her tenseness away. She also has a very good ear for music. She likes to sing and was soon able to memorise the lyrics, whereas she can’t remember much else.”
Born in Bregenz in 1992, the cellist of Persian descent KIAN SOLTANI is probably the most fascinating representative of the young generation. The charismatic musician is at home both in the world of European classical music and in contemporary Iranian music and performs with renowned orchestras and famous conductors. He won the Credit Suisse Young Artist Award in 2018 and was Artist in Residence of the famous Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in 2019. He is firmly convinced of the therapeutic effect of music:
“Music connects people across all borders and cultures, because it touches their innermost. I am convinced of its therapeutic effect on sick children and young people and support the causes of the ART-THERAPIE Foundation.”
“They say the sound of the cello is very similar to the human voice. Like this, music can have a particularly beneficial effect on sick children and young people, because it relaxes, comforts, stimulates, motivates and helps to alleviate their suffering.”
© Holger Hage & Deutsche Grammophon
Pianist LOUIS LORTIE from Canada made his debut at the age of thirteen with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and later went on a historic tour of China and Japan with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Since then he has been playing with world-famous orchestras and in renowned concert halls and commutes between Canada, Belgium and Italy, where he founded the LacMus Festival on Lake Como. In October 2021, Louis Lortie gave a benefit concert with violinist Pavel Berman at the LAC cultural centre in Lugano.
“The ART-THERAPY Foundation deserves our full support. I am impressed by the knowledge and commitment of Dr Pezzoli (head of paediatrics at Lugano Hospital). Unfortunately, we musicians still know too little about the therapeutic effect of our art and should already learn during our studies to participate in this wonderful development. I will be happy to champion these visionary programmes and wish them full success!”
The world-famous singer, songwriter and actress Petula Clark lives in Switzerland. She is the foundation’s patron of the heart from the very beginning and dedicated the song “Butterfly in the Snow”, which she wrote and composed, to the seriously ill children. The touching song gives courage and awakens and strengthens the positive feelings of the little patients.
Music in the colours of the soul : The famous pianist ELISABETH SOMBART plays in the most prestigious concert halls in the world and devotes herself to training young pianists in Switzerland and abroad. As founder and president of the Résonnance foundation she brings music to the places of suffering: In hospitals, prisons, retirement homes and residences for the disabled. “For injured souls” as she expresses it in her empathetic manner.
“Our consciousness perceives tones directly with both our physical bodies and our souls. In this way we have the ability of bringing them back into harmony.”
The internationally-known artist comes MICHEL HUELIN from the Jura and lives in Geneva. He has made one of his fascinating works available for the CD cover of Petula Clark. He is convinced that the creative therapy approach releases vital internal powers.
The painter says: “The huge plus of art therapy is its ability to use the potential of young patients. This is why I support this approach , of converting creative energy to inner strengths.”