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West Bloomfield

December 11, 2012

Zonjic returns for annual hospital holiday concert

By Eric Czarnik
C & G Staff Writer

WEST BLOOMFIELD — Frosty the Snowman had a corncob pipe and a button nose, but he didn’t have a flute choir. Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital will.

Jazz flutist Alexander Zonjic will highlight a free Healing Arts Holiday Concert at the hospital Dec. 16. During the concert, Zonjic and featured guests will play holiday songs, as well as classical and jazz music. Guests include the Barbara Ogar Flute Choir and the North Oakland Chamber Orchestra.

Zonjic has held other free concerts at the hospital throughout the past year for the Christmas holiday season, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. He said his previous concerts at Henry Ford have been successful and called the facility a beautiful place.

“This year’s concert is pretty great,” he said. “I’ve got myself a string orchestra. I’ve got a flute choir of about 30 players. It’s going to be real big, really holiday, really jazzy and it’s going to be a great show.”

When it comes to reinterpreting holiday favorites, Zonjic called it a balancing act. He said the songs’ arrangements can be changed a bit, but it’s not a good idea to fix something that’s not broken.

In fact, there is a danger of overarranging the songs and wandering away from their true spirit, he said.

“If there’s anything in the music business that people never tire of, it’s all those holiday songs,” he said. “Remember, it’s not like they’re hearing them 12 months a year. They mean so much to so many people on some level.”

Jeffrey Jacobs, the hospital’s interim director of retail and wellness services, said this would be Zonjic’s fifth concert at the hospital since its Healing Arts concerts began last year. He said an average of 600 people attended each concert, and the events are also broadcasted to hospital patients’ TV screens so they can experience the concerts from their rooms.

Jacobs said the Healing Arts program ties in with the hosptial’s mission of being a community center for wellbeing. “We really believe it’s giving back the community,” he said. “We truly believe that healing music is therapy, and it heals people faster and makes them feel better.”

The free Healing Arts Holiday Concert is at 2 p.m. Dec. 16 at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital, 6777 W. Maple Road, in West Bloomfield. Admission and parking at the hospital are free. Learn more at www.zonjic.com or call (248) 325-1000.

You can reach C & G Staff Writer Eric Czarnik at eczarnik@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1058.