Special to the Times
Last week, Andrew Marshall, finalist of NBC’s “The Voice” Season 20, and local singing group Voices of Hope performed at Mass General Cancer Center’s signature event, CenterStage, which raised more than $2.2 million for cancer research and development.
Co-chairs Isabelle and Ian Loring gathered with about 300 guests at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, for a beautiful evening of storytelling and celebration to honor progress in the fight against cancer.
Andrew Marshall’s incredible story was one of many shared at the CenterStage event. Marshall is a Boxford native 23-year-old who underwent treatment for acute lymphocytic leukemia at MGH for almost four years. At the age of 16, Marshall came to MGH after he suddenly developed jaundiced eyes. He spent three days in the hospital being tested for a number of possible causes – tuberculosis, hepatitis, mononucleosis, and even leukemia. The tests all came back negative. It wasn’t until Alison Friedmann, MD, clinical director of the Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Unit at Mass General for Children, insisted upon one further test that Marshall’s diagnosis was finally determined.
Throughout his treatment, music remained Marshall’s passion and got him through his darkest times. He used music therapy via the Mass General Cancer Center Katherine A. Gallagher Integrative Therapies Program to gain his strength and his confidence to play music again. Though there was a point he thought he would never sing again, he rose through the ranks as one of the favorites contestants on “The Voice” Season 20 in 2021.
“I don’t know how my life will pan out,” said Marshall. “‘The Voice’ has opened so many doors for me in terms of music and my future – but if the time comes, I would go back to school to become a music therapist, really because of the incredible people I encountered at Mass General and the kindness and passion they showed for their work.”
To learn more about Mass General Cancer Center and its extraordinary work, visit www.massgeneral.org/cancer-center.