GPs will hit the high note to help North East cancer patients

EDO concert organisers Dave Tomson, Karen Riddle and Jonathan Caudle
EDO concert organisers Dave Tomson, Karen Riddle and Jonathan Caudle
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A South Shields GP will be swapping her stethoscope for a clarinet to raise the roof at Sage Gateshead.

Karen Riddle, who works at Wawn Street Surgery, will be performing alongside 99 other doctors from across the continent in the European Doctors Orchestra (EDO) concert.

As well as being a founder member of the orchestra, Karen will perform in a concert she’s helped to organise at the Sage on Sunday, November 27.

Funds raised will be donated to CLIC Sargent, a UK charity that supports children and young adults who are suffering from cancer.

The orchestra, which was formed in 2004, performs two public charity concerts each year at venues across Europe.

Karen, who will be performing for the second time with the EDO in Newcastle, said: “What better way to spend some down time than playing good music with a wonderful variety of doctors and raising some money for young people facing some of the toughest challenges there are?

“Last time the North East did us proud and we had the biggest audience EDO has ever had – let’s hope we can do even better this time.”

The concert, which will be conducted by Natalia Luis-Bassa, will feature a Latin American opener, the romantic Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini, and the huge Prokovief 5th symphony. The Rachmaninov will feature Daniel Grimwood as the piano soloist.

The concert will also see special guest Weronika Okroj share her story with the audience. Weronika, 19, from Newcastle, was supported by CLIC Sargent when she was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma after finding a lump on her neck last year.

She went through intensive chemotherapy to fight the cancer, which had spread to her bones by the time it was diagnosed.

During her treatment she was supported by CLIC Sargent, and took part in the charity’s music programme, which sees young people affected by cancer come together for workshops to learn songwriting and performance skills with the help of professionals.

She said: “CLIC Sargent were there for me right after I started treatment. My social worker came and saw me and immediately was checking on what I needed and how I was. He helped support me and direct me to the financial help I could get. He was really friendly and straight away there was no awkwardness, I could just talk to him.”

CLIC Sargent fundraising Manager, Lindsay Kay said:” We are delighted to once again be working alongside the EDO for their 2016 UK concert. It promises to be a wonderful afternoon of music whilst supporting a very worthy cause. We’d like to thank everyone involved in the event, but especially to the organisers who work so hard on top of their already hectic jobs to pull this event together.”
•Tickets for the concert, which takes place at 3pm in hall one at Sage Gateshead, cost £15 (£10 concession) and are available from The Sage Gateshead ticket office, by calling 0191 443 4661 or by visiting www.thesagegateshead.com