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Music and the Brain

  • May 22, 2017

On May 20th, Julie spoke at Soluna's Music and the Brain - a remarkable collaboration between Dallas Symphony Orchestra and UT Southwestern Medical School. Dr. Mark Goldberg, Chair of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics at UT Southwestern curated the event including keynotes Dr. Ping Ho from UCLA, Tod Machover composer and an innovator in the application of technology in music (and creator of Guitar Hero) and Dr. Charles Limb the Francis A. Sooy Professor of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery and the Chief of the Division of Otology, Neurotology and Skull Base Surgery at University of California, San Francisco. Julie provided a musical interlude of her experience with music and the 2017 Tony Award Winning Dallas Theater Center's production of Public Works Dallas.

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Hildegard: The First Encounter

  • August 19, 2012

My relationship with Hildegard jump-started due to a colorful postcard of a woman with smoke coming out of her head. I’d stumbled into a funky, now defunct art gallery in the summer of 2008, a few yards from the four-way stop in Pecos, NM that marked the center of town. The blue of her gown caught me first. Offset by sun-hued yellow, a series of letters framed her body. Japanese, Chinese, petroglyph-type symbols enwrapped this dark-skinned beauty so intent on her work. I was taken. I read the bio on the back of the card. Hildegard Von Bingen: Artist, writer, physician, mystic who came up with her own language. Hildegard seemed the female DaVinci of the 1100s. A switch in my brain flipped. Hildegard should be my muse, my visual mentor as I finished my book. I bought the postcard. I wanted the artist to make me a poster-sized image of her Hildegard to hang above my desk. The back of the card had a badly smudged name with no website. Taking to the Internet, I began a game of trial and error to find the artist. I’m not usually an artist-stalker, but the quest for Hildegard...

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Testimonial

"Hersh's page-turner story is very informative about the state of mind of people experiencing very high suicide risk; to take two examples, perceived burdensomeness and social isolation.  I'm relieved for her and for all of us that she survived.  Struck by Living shows a life beyond suicidality, filled with possibility."

Thomas Joiner
Thomas Joiner, The Robert O. Lawton Distinguished Professor of Psychology, Florida State University, Author of Why People Die by Suicide and Myths About Suicide
About Struck By Living

In Struck by Living, Julie Hersh picks apart the irony of her life with humor and brutal honesty. Despite a loving husband, healthy children, financial security, Julie attempted suicide three times. With the help of ECT (electroconvulsive therapy), Julie broke the deadly course of her disorder. Now well, Julie promotes the importance of mental health with collaborations with other artists and organizations.

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