Moffitt Team Member
Lloyd has a special role at Moffitt. It’s one that only exists at a handful of other hospitals in the nation. His title? Artist in Residence. With upright bass in tow, Lloyd visits patients with the offer of a personal musical performance. And he couldn’t be more proud to share his talents and service.
After two decades with the Florida Orchestra – an impressive career for any musician – Lloyd was drawn to a new calling. “During my yoga practices, I kept having these little inspirations. I’d get a little nudge. A kind of message,” he recalls. It was time to share his talents with a new audience. He was familiar with Moffitt’s reputation as a high-quality institution, so he decided to see if his music would be a welcomed addition. And it was.
In the beginning, Lloyd played in Moffitt’s lobbies and waiting rooms. And he quickly realized this venue and audience were unlike any he’d been familiar with. “Here, it's not about playing your most difficult music. It's about serving the community you're playing for – whether it's the single individual in a room or a lobby full of people. You have to feel what's happening energetically and fit yourself into that.”
Before long, Lloyd was ready to take his Moffitt performances to a more personal level. So he completed the training necessary to become a Certified Music Practitioner, allowing him to play for patients in their rooms. A few years later, he was hired as a full-time employee. To this day, he’s grateful Moffitt recognizes the value of the arts and the effects they have on patients. “It creates a feeling in the hospital. It changes the environment. Even beyond music – the community artwork that gets made – we collaborate with a USF curator and they frame and hang community-generated art all over the hospital to create these beautiful, powerful exhibits,” he explains. “And it takes courage for an institution try to strike a balance between the bottom line and doing these special things.”
Each time Lloyd plays for a patient, it really is a special opportunity. “I stop by a room and introduce myself and say, ‘If you're interested, I could come by and play a couple of tunes for you.’ And they have to immediately make this leap. And I'm astonished at the percentage of people who say yes. Right away they have to be courageous by inviting me to play.” But the patients who accept the offer receive a refreshing experience. “A man just told me yesterday that my upright bass is the perfect instrument for this place because you feel it in your body. You feel it in your bones. And it's very soothing.”
Still, the music has an effect that’s deeper than anything physical. “If I'm doing my job well, you can see their perception of their whole world changes for that moment. Their attitude, their energy. We call it ‘remembered wellness.’ They begin to remember that there's more to them. And it inspires me tremendously.”
In addition to the inspiration Lloyd receives from his interactions with patients, he’s also found inspiration from Moffitt as an institution. “I get emotional when I talk about this because I'm just astonished at all the ways Moffitt continues to be an amazing place. After a decade here, you'd think that you'd see all the flaws, the wrinkles. But there are very few.” He credits the staff for cultivating this unique environment. “I have staff members who routinely stop and refer me to patients. Even the people cleaning the rooms – they'll come and say, ‘Oh, you need to go play for my lady in room 35.’ You know, ‘My lady.’ I mean, that's the level of investment that they have in their patients. I just can’t imagine a more extraordinary place to work.”