Project #1206

Free Cleft Surgery for 400 Poor Children in India

by Smile Train
Oct 11, 2011

Famed Violinist Brings Cheer to Patients in India

Smile Train donor Paul Peabody
Smile Train donor Paul Peabody

Varanasi, India - Paul Peabody, acclaimed violinist with the New York City Ballet and part of the Grammy winning orchestra that scored "Titanic," just returned from an unforgettable journey providing the gift of music throughout India. A long time Smile Train supporter, Paul enjoyed his second tour of Smile Train India partner hospitals, playing fiddle for patients, families, doctors, and staff.

He spent most of his five weeks alongside Smile Train partners Dr. Sunil Richardson, Dr. Jyostna Murthy, and Dr. Subodh Singh. Paul comforted patients with a myriad of music from classical to traditional Hindi songs, but the requests really came pouring in when staff would find out that he played an integral role in the music for "Titanic." Paul primarily rotated between the waiting room and the recovery room to calm the fears of patients and parents before surgery and use the healing powers of music to aid in their recovery. Towards the end of his trip, Paul was even asked to play for the doctors inside the OR.

"When Dr. Sunil Richardson asked if I would play [in the OR], I gave a stricken look and I made him promise me that there was no way that my sounds could interfere at all with anyone's concentration! He told me that many surgeons actually play classical music to help them concentrate. In the OR everything worked like clockwork: extremely peaceful."

Children who had never heard, let alone seen, a violin before, found themselves glued to their seats as the music washed over them. Whether it was playing Hindi folk songs to comfort crying patients, or playing some of the pop songs he worked on for Michael Jackson and Madonna, Paul's talents, enthusiasm, and kindness revered him to everyone he met.

His visit coincided with India's Independence Day, August 15, where he joined in the celebration by playing for and assisting in Dr. Singh's tree planting, Green Independence Day Initiative. Paul has recently returned to New York and is already getting ready to plan his trip next year.

Paul Peabody playing in the Smile Train OR
Paul Peabody playing in the Smile Train OR
Paul Peabody and Smile Train Dr. Subodh Singh
Paul Peabody and Smile Train Dr. Subodh Singh

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Smile Train

Location: New York - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Smile Train
Project Leader:
Adina Wexelberg-Clouser
Donor Relations Associate
New York, New York United States

Retired Project!

This project is no longer accepting donations.

Still want to help?

Find another project in India or in Children that needs your help.
Find a Project

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence


Woman Holding a Gift Card
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.