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Notes and Beats

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    Several years ago, math professor Ron Rutherford gave the church a Kwai piano and Baldwin electronic harpsichord built in the 1960s.   The few harpsichords that were built at this time were used by groups like the Beatles and the Beach Boys.  When the instrument arrived here at the church, most of the electronics worked and the harpsichord jacks and plectra worked.  Over time, parts of the harpsichord mechanism deteriorated and the instrument no longer worked.   Our Senior Minister Steve took the harpsichord and all of its parts home after the Christmas holidays and began to “troubleshoot.”  Consulting with builders from Hubbard Harpsichord Inc., gave us information as to what was needed and supplies were ordered and shipped.  (new jacks, plectra, felts, etc.)   An electronics repair shop assisted Steve in repairing the foot pedals and the electronic connections.   


    On Saturday, April 13, the harpsichord was brought back to the church in almost perfectly working condition.   All electronic connections have been cleaned or replaced, and all mechanical and moving parts of the harpsichord have been replaced as well.  The revived instrument made a brief debut on Sunday, April 14 with a Prelude by Renaissance composer William Byrd.  


    There are a variety of possible sounds on this instrument.  It can sound like a harpsichord amplified, and it can sound almost like an organ.  The keyboardists are looking forward to opportunities to play this.  We thank Rev. Steve Crump for believing in the possibilities of this harpsichord and for spending time and energy on the project. 


    During May we will hear vocal music from the Children’s Choir, directed by Cathy McManus and the Youth Choir, directed by Marie Flowers.  We will also hear solo vocal music from Cathy during the May 5 services.    The Adult Choir sings an Introit for Sunday May 12.   Marie Flowers and Cathy McManus along with their daughters will provide for the services on May 19.  


    The Music Sunday, June 2 features anthems from this past season voted to be the favorites.   This service will include hymns, readings, anthems and words from the choir members about the music and about the work of singing.