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Tunes to Stop Tumors 

Music Short

Denise Tormey has enjoyed her mother's music for years. But not until recently have her mom's melodies proved to be life-changing. When 7-year-old Denise was diagnosed with a brain tumor, her mother, Cheryl Fare, switched her career from acting to singing to spend more time at home with her daughter.

Now, Cheryl Fare and her group 99:1 are putting their skills to work along with Kelly Kennedy and the Susan Greenbaum Band, playing a benefit concert for Brain Tumor Awareness Week at the Barksdale Theatre on Sunday, May 6, from 2 to 5 p.m.

The three acts joined forces for this cause because all of them have had a personal experience with brain cancer: Greenbaum lost a brother to a brain tumor and Kennedy lost her cousin.

"Several of us felt like we needed to be more active in helping to find a cure," Fare says. "We're not physicians but there's other things that we can do."

Proceeds from the concert will go to the Richmond chapter of the National Brain Tumor Support Group. The group of approximately 30 members will distribute funds between the National Brain Tumor Foundation and, Fare hopes, the Medical College of Virginia at Virginia Commonwealth University, where the support group is based. The money will go toward brain tumor research.

Denise's tumor was not detected until she began losing vision in her left eye because the tumor was resting on her optic nerve. Two surgeries to remove the tumor left pieces remaining, and the debris began to grow, leading to the need for radiation treatment. But the support group's youngest member has not fallen behind in her studies and still attends school for part of every day.

Though the concert is free, the group asks for at least a $10 donation. "If we filled every seat in the Barksdale and everyone gave at least $10, we'll have at least $3,000," Fare says. But she hopes to raise more than $5,000.

The event is sponsored by the Richmond Brain Tumor Support Group, the Barksdale Theatre and Theatre IV. For more information, call 560-4409.

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