"'SLAM! I Was Back.' Dr. Cicoria Knew He Was Back in His Own Body Because He Had Pain ..." - from "Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain" by Dr. Oliver Sacks

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In one electrifying instant, Dr. Tony Cicoria's life changed forever. He had never thought of becoming a pianist, but at age 42, he was struck by lightning and was overcome with an insatiable desire to begin playing the piano. Dr. Cicoria will perform his first composition, "Lightning Sonata," on Wednesday, October 17th at 7PM at the home of Westport resident Erica vanderLinde Feidner, also known as "The Piano Matchmaker."

The debut of Dr. Tony Cicoria's first piano composition will take place in Westport, CT on Wednesday, October 17th at 7PM. The performance is free and open to the public.

In 1994, Dr. Tony Cicoria was talking to his mother on a payphone. A successful orthopedic surgeon in upstate New York, he had never thought of becoming a pianist---but just as he was setting down the phone, Dr. Cicoria was struck by a rogue bolt of lightning that, in one electrifying instant, changed his life forever. Following the aftermath of his near-death experience, Dr. Cicoria developed an insatiable desire to play the piano. This fierce, unrelenting drive led him to fill every second of spare time with the piano, often playing until the early morning hours.

Often, surviving a near-death experience is merely a matter of medical expertise and good timing. But surviving a near-death experience and discovering newfound musical genius? That is the stuff of legends, of the far reaches of modern scientific explanation -- Cicoria's extraordinary story is examined by prominent author and neurologist Dr. Oliver Sacks in his new book Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain, published by Knopf.

In recognition of Musicophilia's mid-October, 2007 release, Dr. Cicoria will perform the first movement of his composition, "Lightning Sonata" on Wednesday, October 17th at 7PM at the home of Westport resident Erica vanderLinde Feidner, also known as "The Piano Matchmakerâ„¢."

In his quest to find the perfect piano for his new musical ambitions, Cicoria sought out Feidner's expertise. "Tony's Bosendorfer piano is fiery and passionate, just like Tony himself," says Feidner, who believes the soul of a piano should mirror the soul of its owner. When Feidner learned of Cicoria's story, she knew it must be told -- and it must be told by Dr. Oliver Sacks. On a whim, Feidner e-mailed Dr. Sacks, and received a response requesting a meeting with Dr. Cicoria. The rest is history.

Fifty copies of Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain autographed by Dr. Sacks will be available for sale at the event on Wednesday, October 17th. Additionally, Dr. Cicoria will be available after his performance for conversation and book signings.

Seating is extremely limited, and reservations are required.


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