ABBA the Concert
In Appreciation
Dr. Bertha Bouroncle Pereny, 1919–2013

The Columbus Symphony Orchestra is proud and honored to have received a generous bequest from Dr. Bertha Bouroncle Pereny, a lifelong Symphony patron and friend who shared her passion and love of great symphonic music with her husband Andrew Pereny and her large and devoted extended family from across the Americas. Born in Trujillo, Peru in 1919, Dr. Bouroncle was the fourth of five children born to Harvard-educated Dr. Luis H. Bouroncle and his wife, Carmela Bouroncle Gonzalez-Quint.

A woman of incredible intellect and drive, Bertha Bouroncle graduated at the top of her class from the San Marcos Medical School in Peru, and eventually joined The Ohio State University (OSU) as the first female full professor of medicine in the state of Ohio. At OSU, she became a worldrenowned researcher and a beloved teacher of thousands of medical students, and was instrumental in the creation of The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center, affectionately known as “The James.”

One of Dr. Bouroncle’s greatest contributions to the fight against cancer was the identification and treatment of hairy cell leukemia (HCL), widely regarded as one of the greatest scientific achievements ever recorded at OSU. While a diagnosis of HCL was once a death sentence, it is now one of the most treatable cancers, thanks to her lifetime of dedicated research. As one of her colleagues stated, One could summarize Dr. Bouroncle’s legacy as moving hematology from the dark ages into the age of enlightenment.

The woman who gave renewed life to tens of thousands through her research and discoveries, in death reached out generously to the causes she loved so much in life. The Columbus Symphony is honored to be a recipient of her generosity and to know that a woman of such talents, character, and dedication, who gave so much to so many, found inspiration and joy in the mission and music of what we do.

We are honored to dedicate a concert annually in her memory. Join us for the first dedicated concert on May 23, 2015.