Home > About > News and Events > News Releases > News Releases 2004 > Instrumental Works of Art Featured in Moravian College Exhibit
News Release

Instrumental Works of Art Featured in Moravian College Exhibit

Three concerts show musical constructions that really work, including a snow shovel with strings

BETHLEHEM, Pa. October 19, 2004 -- In conjunction with the exhibit “Unplugged: Acoustic Instruments” (October 28-December 5 at Payne Gallery), Moravian College will present three performance events to prove that all the instruments in the show actually make music.

The exhibit, curated by Paul Larson, professor emeritus of music, includes string, wind, and percussion instruments that are works of art. Some are standard. Others have been invented or constructed by instrument-makers and cross-disciplinary visual artists to satisfy specific requirements or to express personal ideas. Nearly all the instruments are playable. Visitors are encouraged to both look and play while in Payne Gallery.

The show also includes works by the late Margaret Canteini, a local artist and teacher who died in 2002, leaving a series of paintings and drawings influenced by music. Dr. Jan Larson, a reading teacher retired from the Allentown School District, curated this part of the exhibit and will speak on the relationship between visual art and musical art at the opening reception on Thursday, October 28.

Also at the reception, members of the Bethlehem-based chamber ensemble Satori will play music on flutes (from the exhibit) and guitar, while local artist Bill Christine draws in response to their playing. The reception runs from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m. in the Gallery.

On Wednesday, November 3, a concert called “Sculptured Sound” will feature Manhattan-based artist concrète [please use this phrase exactly as it is] Ken Butler. He will demonstrate some of the instruments he creates from found objects. Several of his pieces, which he calls “hybrid instruments,” are in the show; and he plans to play the newest member of the violin family, a snow shovel with strings, as part of his presentation. Sculptured Sound will be held at 7:30 p.m. in Foy Hall. Tickets are $12, and $6 seniors and students.

For additional information on Butler, see www.mindspring.com/~kbhybrid.

Children will offer music on Wednesday, November 17, in a concert called “New Wine in Old Bottles.” A group from Cheston Elementary School in Easton will play xylophones (which have wooden bars) and metallophones (metal bars). These are often called “Orff instruments,” because they were designed for very young children by the German pedagogue Carl Orff (1895-1982), better known as the composer of “Carmina Burana.”

On the same concert, a bevy of short violinists from Moravian College’s after-school program, the Music Institute, will play Suzuki violin repertory on a spectrum of graduated violins. In the 1930s, when Shinichi Suzuki (1898-1998) created his now-famous violin method, he commissioned his father’s violin factory to build instruments as small as 1/64-normal size. As the children, who were as young as 3, grew larger, they would move up to 1/32-, 1/16-, 1/8-size violins, and so forth, until they were able to play a full-size instrument, which is about 14 inches long and requires a wrist-to-elbow length of 12 inches. New Wine in Old Bottles will be held at 7:30 p.m. in Foy Hall. Tickets are $12 and $6 students and seniors.

The concert also will include a teen-age bell choir from Asbury United Methodist Church in Allentown will perform on November 17. Like the Orff instruments and the Suzuki violins, they will play instruments -- tuned handbells -- that are also are contained in the exhibit. These are made by the Schulmerich Company, world-renowned makers of cast-metal instruments, based in Sellersville.

For more information on these events, please call 610-861-1650 or email music@moravian.edu.

Payne Gallery is open to the public Tuesdays through Sundays from 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Admission to the gallery is free. For more information, please call the Art Department at (610) 861-1680 or (610) 861-1667 during weekends.