To “do good differently”, doctors from Saguenay founded an imposing group of 14 amateur musicians, all health workers, who give concerts for the benefit of various causes. A look at the Doc Show, presented for the first time in Montreal at the Leonardo Da Vinci Center.

We don’t know exactly where the idea for the Doc Show emerged: near a coffee machine, in a corridor of the Chicoutimi hospital, over a drink? What we do know is that it was born during a discussion between three somewhat musical doctors, including the pediatrician – and saxophonist – Zoheir Ferdjioui. Since they played music themselves, they thought there must be other hidden talents among their colleagues.

“We sent an email to all the doctors in the hospital,” the pediatrician recalls. More than a dozen responded. And of the 14 who joined the group, 13 are still present. “There is only one person who has changed out of the 14 since the beginning, in 2016”, specifies Dr Ferdjioui. This is no small feat, especially since three of the members of the group no longer even practice medicine in Saguenay, but in other regions of Quebec.

The Doc Show band dreamed big from the start: their first concert took place in a 400-seat hall, which is not nothing when you know that the largest hall in Chicoutimi has 800. always been to join a cause, to support it financially and give it visibility. This will be the case again, on April 22, when the show will be presented at the Leonardo Da Vinci Center, in the borough of Saint-Léonard, for the benefit of Autisme Montréal.

This good is also a bit for doctors, he admits, since seeing health professionals playing music and having fun on stage “gives a different image of the doctor”. Which can’t hurt, he suggests, when the state of the health care system means that many people have a love-hate relationship with it.

Another way to do good, according to members of The Doc Show, is to always keep in mind that viewers should have a good time. “We don’t want people to get bored, so we only take known songs… which we don’t necessarily do as everyone knows them,” explains the pediatrician-saxophonist. We want to surprise: we make intros, we change the endings, we sing them in another language. »

Without wanting to say too much about the repertoire, Zoheir Ferdjioui still slips in the names of the Beatles, Jean Leloup, Sinatra and the B-52’s (“to let go of his crazy!”). “There is also a subgroup in the group, a quartet that plays classical music, reports the pediatrician. At each concert, there is a 15-minute block devoted to classical music. Or rather to film music with classical orchestrations. “We even bring down a screen to project images of the films from which our music is drawn,” he says.

Dr. Ferdjioui and his colleagues know that the few thousand dollars that can be raised for the benefit of Autisme Montréal will not fundamentally change the situation regarding autism. But every little bit counts, he believes, to bring attention to a cause or “help families who are completely helpless [in the face of this condition].”