Monday, June 02, 2008

Instruments (not precisely choral, I know!)

The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston has some lectures coming up featuring items in their musical instrument collection. (Just missed getting this up in time to let you know about the harmonica lecture today.) More info on the MFA online calendar. Note the electric guitar lecture! Hat tip to my dad for forwarding me this info.

Wednesday, June 4 from 6-7pm: The Curious Instruments of Edward Light

Local performers Olav Chris Henriksen and Nancy Hurrell will talk about the history and repertoire of several unusual hybrid string instruments designed by English musician and inventor Edward Light during the early nineteenth century. Among the instruments from the MFA’s collection that will be demonstrated are the guitar-harp, harp-lute-guitar, and dital harp.

Monday, July 7, 11am-12noon: Parker Electric Guitars, Ken Parker

Noted guitar maker Ken Parker will talk about the design concepts behind the stylish and innovative Parker Fly electric guitar, which he began developing in 1991. A Parker Fly Artist model guitar (donated by Parker to the MFA in 1999) will be discussed and demonstrated.

Monday, August 4, 11am-12noon: The Fife in Early America, Bill Phenix

Local performer Bill Phenix will talk about the history, role, and repertoire of the fife in the United States from about 1750 to 1850. He will demonstrate the instrument’s playing technique using modern replicas from his own collection as well as several examples belonging to the MFA.

Wednesday, August 6, 6-7pm: The Uilleann Bagpipes of Ireland, Benedict Koehler

Vermont bagpipe maker and musician Benedict Kohler will talk about the construction, history, and playing technique of Ireland’s uilleann bagpipes. Also known as union pipes, this instrument has experienced a great resurgence in recent years. Using modern instruments from his own collection, Koehler will demonstrate the wonderful sound of these bagpipes, and the MFA's rare set of nineteenth-century pipes by Michel Egan will be on view for examination.

Monday, September 8, 11am-12noon: Guitars with More Than Six Strings, Olav Chris Henriksen

Join local performer Olav Chris Henriksen for a look at guitars in the MFA’s collections that have more than the usual complement of six strings. Henriksen will talk about and demonstrate instruments by René François Lacôte (Paris, 1827), Luigi Mozzani (Cento, Italy, about 19125), and an amazing-looking triple-necked guitar called a harpo-lyre, made and patented in 1829 by Jean-François Salomon (Besançon, France).

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