'Singing has helped me to cope and to come through'
Published: Wednesday, 24 June 2009 11:55
WHEN Rachel Brand discovered she had a brain tumour, her life was turned upside down. The management consultant, who is in her 30s, underwent surgery. Yet two years later, she had to cope with the news that the tumour was growing back and that she faced more surgery followed by radiotherapy.
Not surprisingly, she has struggled with feelings of depression and isolation. But Rachel's saving grace has been a surprising one - singing. During a period off work after her first diagnosis she decided to pursue her love of jazz and singing, an interest she had put to one side for many years. Soon she found herself heading north from her London home to Edinburgh where she took a five-day course with jazz vocalists and teachers Fionna Duncan and Sophie Bancroft. It changed her life.
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Alternative health and the end of the age of reason
Published: Wednesday, 24 June 2009 11:47
In London, years ago, a friend took to wearing decoration inspired by the major religions. Round his neck he wore a rosary and a crucifix, he had a tattoo of a Hindu god on his arm and on the back of his short-sleeved jacket was written ''There is no god but Allah''. One day, he went to Brick Lane market. A market trader smiled and said: ''You are a good religious boy.'' But then an old man took exception to his garb, shouted: ''You crazy, you crazy, you believe in everything,'' and chased him down the street, waving a stick. I thought about this when I heard the story of Stephen Hall, who, shortly before he died of terminal cancer paid more than (pounds) 2000 to a ''wellness practitioner'' for a 'high frequency therapy device'' he was told would cure him.
Read more: Alternative health and the end of the age of reason