Teen Required to Sing Through Brain Surgery but Her Voice Has Doctors Dancing Along

April 18, 2019 Updated: April 18, 2019

Four years ago teenager Kira Laconetti noticed something strange was happening to her. She was an avid performer and music was her passion, so when she suddenly experienced patches in her life where she’d stop being able to carry a tune, she knew something was wrong.

“It feels like a light switch just switches in my brain,” she said, “and suddenly I’m tone deaf. I can’t sing, I can’t process the words in time with the music.” Knowing something was wrong, she went to the hospital; where an MRI scan discovered a marble-sized tumor in Kira’s brain.

“I know – it’s a cruel joke that it would actually happen there, on the one thing I’m actually passionate about,” she said. Cruel joke, or lucky? The neurosurgery team at Seattle Children’s Hospital decided to see what would happen if they woke her up mid-surgery to sing as they removed the tumor. In the video, they rouse Kira mid-surgery and she sings along with the music.

Just 48 hours after surgery Kira was sat up, singing and playing guitar. Her surgeon said, “[she has] near perfect pitch – so it’s very encouraging to hear someone only two days after surgery [being] able to sing and communicate musically.” Hillary Shurtleff, Paediatric Neuropsychologist at Seattle Children’s Hospital said, “that’s the goal – we want to remove the tumor and let them move on with their lives.” It certainly looks like Kira now has a bright future ahead of her.

Watch the video to see her perform before her surgery, and while the surgeons are actively working on removing the tumor.

Video Credit: Seattle Children’s Hospital | Youtube.com/user/SeattleChildrens

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