Nurses team up with cancer patient to release Christmas single

A group of nurses have teamed up with a cancer patient to release a Christmas single to raise money for the Kingston Hospital Charity.

Aggy Dabrowska, a trainee nursing associate, has collaborated with Kingston Hospital’s choir and music producer, Nick Hogarth, who has been receiving cancer treatment, to release the track.

Mr Hogarth said the idea came to him while he was receiving chemotherapy for myelodysplastic syndromes – a rare blood cancer – that required him to have lengthy and isolated stays in hospital.

After being diagnosed in January 2023, and finding out he would need to be in hospital for months, he took his keyboard and laptop with him to hospital so he could compose music.

Mr Hogarth said: “The idea to compose a song for Kingston Hospital Charity just came to me one day, having received such great care from the hospital staff, as I suffered some horrible side effects from the chemotherapies.”

He noted that his bedroom at the hospital had recently been upgraded through charitable money, which he said “helped make it easier to live each day”.

As such, Mr Hogarth, who has written for singers including Soft Cell’s lead vocalist Mark Almond, said he wanted to raise funds for the Kingston Hospital Charity to support their work in funding equipment and facilities for patients that would not otherwise be available.

Aggy Dabrowska and Nick Hogarth recording the song at Wolf Studios, Brixton

He decided to finally release a song he had written some years back, This Heart Beats Only For You, explaining that it was “an absolutely fitting title” for the care NHS staff had given him.

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He worked on the song remotely with Ms Dabrowska, who had been caring for him in the hospital.

Ms Dabrowska, who is the lead singer of the track, said she had met Mr Hogarth at a music venue in Surbiton some years before.

She said: “It was quite fortuitous that our paths crossed again at Kingston Hospital during his treatment when I was caring for him.

“Collaborating with Nick was a pleasure.  I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to work alongside an exceptional talent like Nick.”

Kingston Hospital Charity joined the pair up with the Kingston Hospital Choir, which recorded the chorus and backing vocals for the single.

Jan Evans, a sister who works in haematology at Kingston Hospital, was one of the nurses involved. She said: “I think [Nick] was so grateful for his care.

“It grew from that really and the call went out to people who would be interested to join the choir and we all turned up, and we’ve been practising for about six weeks now.”

Ms Evans said the choir has given staff an opportunity to work with colleagues that they would not ordinarily see day to day.

She said: “The choir’s brought all corners of the hospital and our partner Hounslow and Richmond Community NHS Trust together.

“When you’re in a choir everyone’s the same and there’s no hierarchy and I love that,” she added.

Meanwhile, Jo Ranger, a maternity ward clerk at the hospital and the conductor, said the track itself was “so uplifting and positive”.

She said: “It just helps you feel so connected with other people which we’ve missed so much over the past few years and I really love the fact it’s helping Kingston Hospital Charity.

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“A never know, maybe it will get to number one.”

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