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Psychiatrist Da-Shih Hu, M.D., plays no favorites—in song, that is. He has eclectic musical tastes and has performed everything from musicals with the North Country Community Theater and choral classics with the Bel Canto Chamber Singers, to operatic fare with Opera North and doo-wop with an a cappella ensemble called "The Charades."

He once even sang along with a patient who was trying to calm down before undergoing a procedure—a soothing rendition of "Apple Blossom Time," as he recalls it. And Hu says another time, when there was a guitar handy, he presented a patient's case in song. "Just spontaneous," is how he says he often approaches singing, though he's also studied technique with several teachers.

Hu graduated from Jefferson Medical College and came to DHMC for residency training in 1980. Ever since, he's pursued his interests in both psychiatry and music in the Upper Valley.

The two have much in common, he believes. "Psychiatry helps with my singing, because it's a way to understand more about the self and emotions," Hu says, while "the study of music helps me understand the process of learning something new. That's a lot of psychiatric practice," he explains, "teaching people how to break old habits and form new ones."

Megan M. Cooper

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