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Local Pianist Donates CD Proceeds to Cancer Center

New Britain [April 08 2008] - Like many cancer survivors, Phinehas Valenti wanted to do something to help others with the disease. But what?

The answer, it turned out, was right at his fingertips.

Valenti, a New Britain piano teacher for nearly 60 years, rearranged some classical music pieces, melding them with hymns. He then recorded the new piano arrangements, along with some favorite hymns, and released an 18-song CD, “Classical Hymns of Praise.”

He decided to donate all CD sales proceeds to The Hospital of Central Connecticut’s George Bray Cancer Center, to support programs for patients.

“Several members of my family have had cancer; some survived and some did not,” the New Britain native said. “I was thinking about what I could do to help people with cancer and this idea just came to me.”

“God has given him this talent,” said Valenti’s wife, Rebecca, who’s taught piano for 35 years. “This is a wonderful way for him to use it.”

Valenti was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1994, after his primary care physician, internist Earle Sittambalam, M.D., noticed he had high levels of PSA – a protein produced by the prostate – in his blood.

“We were devastated,” Rebecca said. “When you hear the word ‘cancer’ it’s very scary.”

Valenti was lucky – his cancer was caught early. He had a prostatectomy to remove it and has been able to continue his long career teaching advanced piano students from throughout the state.

Among his former students are Sittambalam, who detected his cancer 14 years ago, and other current and former Hospital of Central Connecticut physicians.
It took nearly three years for Valenti to develop the arrangements of songs on the CD, memorize them and record them using his home computer. But he and his wife agreed the effort was worth it.

“It was a labor of love,” Rebecca said.

Valenti’s CD is $10.95 and may be purchased at the gift shops at the hospital’s New Britain General campus and Bradley Memorial campus in Southington. CDs are also available through the hospital’s Development Office, (860) 224-5567.

Contact: Nancy Martin, 860-224-5900, ext. 4366

HCC Corporate Communications
(860) 224-5695 • Fax (860) 224-5779