It was a tremendous privilege to have been present at the Concert for Christina: A Tribute to The Beatles, courtesy of New Cavern Productions at the University of the Arts on April 26th. I attended with Debbie Foerster, a fellow member of the Friedreich’s Ataxia Program at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, another devoted researcher, friend and asset to the FA community in Philadelphia and at large. As a longtime supporter of the Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance and as a true Beatles admirer, I was thrilled to find both in one place, and could imagine no better, brighter way to pass a Sunday evening.
With lovely renditions of Love Me Do and Dear Prudence, with Christina’s father and her sister among many talented performers, with a crowd full of friends— it was wonderful. There was a great deal of happy energy, of enthusiasm, of warmth, and Christina herself of course was radiant. The concert has been one of many fundraising and awareness raising platforms organized by the Logan family on behalf of FARA. Their efforts are commendable, and the responsiveness of the community a testament to the incredible vitality that surrounds FARA, to the support that continues to bring an empowered lot ever closer to curative treatment.
Christina, though, says it best in her address to friends, family, Beatles enthusiasts and FARA fans alike:
“As written by the wonderfully talented John Lennon and Paul McCartney, the lyrics, ‘take these broken wings and learn to fly’ are powerful words that speak to my inner self. Every day, I am faced with obstacles that teach me how to fly by living with a rare disease known as Friedreich’s Ataxia… I do not let FA get in the way of my life. I have FA, but it certainly does not have me!”
“Every song sung tonight is one more happy tune towards the four letter word, CURE. So my family, the FA community and I are entirely grateful for your generosity and making tonight possible!”
To her sister, she says:
“And thank you to my amazing sister, Catherine for putting this all together. You are my heart and soul and you help me follow the sun.”
Indeed, funds were raised for FARA, awareness was spread a bit further, and musical greatness courtesy of John, Paul, George, and Ringo was conjured well in service of accelerated research. And beyond even that, there was empowerment, there was celebration, there was togetherness, there was song. You, Christina, are a force. Continue to be so, and together we will cure FA.
With a lot of thanks and admiratrion,