Musicians On Call (MOC), a nonprofit that brings live and recorded music to the bedsides of patients in healthcare facilities, brought together supporters from the past two decades for its 20th Anniversary Celebration Presented by Citi on November 19 at Edison Ballroom. The event celebrated the organization’s impact on patients, families and caregivers across the country and raised $500,000 for its programs delivering the healing power of music. The night featured special performances by multi-platinum singer/songwriter Gavin DeGrawand singer/songwriter and star of TV’s NASHVILLE Charles Esten.
Musicians On Call Co-Founders Michael Solomon, Co-Founder and Partner of Brick Wall and 10x Management, and Vivek J. Tiwary, Founder and CEO of Tiwary Entertainment Group and Lead Producer of Broadway’s newest musical Jagged Little Pill, were honored during the event, each receiving MOC’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Thanks to their vision of bringing the joy of live music to patients at their bedsides, more than 775,000 people nationwide have experienced the healing benefits of Musicians On Call’s Bedside Performance Program.
“What makes Musicians On Call so great is the strength of everyone involved. We can do anything together, we will do everything together. I am incredibly humbled, grateful and blown away by everyone who put their hearts into celebrating everything Musicians On Call has become,” said Solomon. “I want to send a heartfelt thank you to every partner, supporter and friend who joined us in our celebration.”
“I’ve had the great fortune of producing or writing projects in a number of media I adore, from television to Broadway musicals – but I am most proud of Co-Founding Musicians On Call with my dear friend Michael Solomon,” said Tiwary. “It’s a lifelong dream come true to be celebrating 20 years of Musicians On Call tonight, and a humbling honor to receive MOC’s Lifetime Achievement Award.”
Solomon was presented the award by Bruce Springsteen Co-Manager Barbara Carr, trustee of the Kristen Ann Carr Fund, who was instrumental in the creation of MOC in 1999 along with her family Dave Marsh and Sasha Carr. Tiwary received his award from longtime friend and Executive Vice President for Global Public Affairs at Citi, Ed Skyler. Both honorees were surprised at the end of the night with the announcement that Musicians On Call’s outstanding volunteer awards are being renamed the Vivek Tiwary Volunteer Guide Golden Ukulele and Michael Solomon Volunteer Musician Golden Ukulele in their honor in perpetuity.
“It’s incredible to see how far Musicians On Call has come since our first Volunteer Musician made his first bedside visit 20 years ago. The organization was inspired by the legacy of Kristen Ann Carr and the passion of our co-founders Michael Solomon and Vivek Tiwary to bring the healing effects of music to people when they need it most. They have changed hundreds of thousands of lives across the country, honoring Michael and Vivek with the Lifetime Achievement Award was without question the best way to mark such an important milestone for our organization,” said Musicians On Call President & CEO Pete Griffin. “It was a wonderful night recognizing all of the people and the moments that have shaped Musicians On Call into the organization that it is. We are grateful to Citi and all of our sponsors, supporters and partners from across the country for joining us in this celebration.”
During the evening, Musicians On Call joined Presenting Sponsor and longtime supporter Citi in celebrating the organization’s female volunteers at a time when women continue to be underrepresented in the music industry. MOC Volunteer Musician April Kry performed her original songs of female empowerment and self-acceptance, while sharing her own personal experiences performing for patients in healthcare facilities.
The strongest evidence of the healing power of music came when MOC shared the story of a monumental moment in the organization’s history, its emergency response visit to Las Vegas immediately following the Route 91 Harvest Festival shooting. MOC volunteers, and Route 91 survivors, Tracy Szymanski and Nadine Lusmoeller took the stage to share their experiences. Szymanski, Director of Patient Transport and Support Services at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center, was working at Sunrise during MOC’s visit to victims still recovering in the hospital and the staff who were working the night of the tragedy. Lusmoeller turned to Musicians On Call’s program as a part of her personal recovery following the tragic event. Both women are Volunteer Guides for the Bedside Performance Program at Sunrise Hospital and, to date, have brought music to more than 880 and 1,400 people respectively.
MOC’s longest standing and most enthusiastic supporters were also recognized at the event as part of the Founders’ Circle and Wall of Fame. The honorees were presented with Lifetime Achievement awards courtesy of Luna and Jewelbox Platinum.
Musicians On Call’s 20th Anniversary Celebration Presented by Citi was also sponsored by the Kristen Ann Carr Fund, Spotify, The Madison Square Garden Company, Hilton, Southwest®, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, 10x Management, Dream Hotels, Tiwary Entertainment Group, Loeb & Loeb, Greenberg Traurig, We Are All Music Foundation, MSK Kids Memorial Sloan Kettering, Apple Music, Warner Records, Hard Rock, Catherine Cate Sullivan, Phil Sarna, Tom Poleman and Alissa Pollack.
Musicians On Call started in 1999 in New York where it began the Bedside Performance Program, bringing Volunteer Guides and Volunteer Musicians into healthcare facilities to go room to room and perform for patients at their bedsides. In the past 20 years, this program has expanded to 20 major markets nationwide, including New York, Nashville, Los Angeles, Washington DC, Miami, Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Phoenix, Las Vegas, New Orleans, San Francisco and more.
For more information on Musicians On Call visit donate.musiciansoncall.org/MOC20.