Friday, November 22, 2013

Celebrations: Crimson Harps

And so it begins...
The Salt Lake City yearly Christmas season of free celebrations!
Our Sunday newspaper has an entire section devoted to the arts and the listing of weekly events around town is already lengthening.
My calendar could get full very quickly.
It is simply a matter of making the small effort to go to the free events and enjoy, rather than stay at home lounging about as usual.
Last Wednesday was a free harp concert at the University of Utah.
Six student harpists playing an assortment of music ranging from traditional carols to the Casino Band Song, which was the background music in the first Star War movie's bar scene.
I had clipped out the announcement and gotten Bernie on board with going. This time I double checked my day and time, and airily told him the concert would be held up on Presidents Circle, which I believed was near the State capitol building.
Good thing he check that location information as actually the concert was held on the University campus, which isn't even close to the State capitol.
Once we made it to the Presidents Circle we were forced to ask passing student where the specific building was; two of them pointed to the other side of the circular roadway and told us it was one of two buildings.
We parked and walked in the misting rain up steps to one building and then to another where the concert was found in progress.
The picture above was my view upon opening the doorway to the Thompson chamber music hall.

The University's colors are red and black, hence the groups name being Crimson Harps.
Rather poetic name, don't you think?

The six students looked angelic and so lady like in their black dresses.
Gentlemen accompanied them on cello and trombones for some pieces.
Cello and harp is such a rich sound combination.

The non-traditional Santa hats and light strings let us know that they were quite merry.
Here's a brief video from the concert:

The music was heavenly.
The musician's hand and body movements were so graceful as they played.

It was hard to imagine that these were all student musicians.
Don't they all look happy?

I could hardly wait to get up close to the instruments after the concert.

Note card worth scenes.

I could picture any of the harps being the subject of a Christmas card picture.

The carving....

We kept looking and looking at all the details.

The painted details were beautiful as well.

I was able to talk a bit with this harpist.
She explained that the harps stay in the music rooms, and are rarely taken home.
I asked how old she was when she got her first harp.
She was eight.
She carefully explained that her first harp was what was called a lever harp which required manual tone shifts.
This harp had the pedals on the floor.
Another person standing by was laughing about how during one song the pedal action had all the girls nearly bouncing as they played.

Her fellow musician likewise got her first harp at age eight.
That just blows my mind.
How cool would it be to have a daughter playing the harp in the background in one's  home?

A young friend or relative came forward to bring tribute flowers to the young musician.

There were quite a few children like this girl attending, children with various developmental disabilities.
They all seemed spellbound by the music, just like we were.

The Chamber Music room was beautiful with gilded trim and tall windows.

Now that we know where this room is, I think we will be going to other Chamber Music concerts when they are offered.
Can't beat the price...we just had to pay 50 cents for parking in front of the building.

The rain had picked up a bit as we drove away.
Rain on pavement at night makes for such beautiful light reflection.

The University is above the city.
The night cityscape scene will only get better as the Christmas season progresses with more and more Christmas lights added everywhere.

Our date night ended with a fro-yo run.
Root beer float flavored frozen yogurt is delicious!

And for anyone interested, here is what was played at the concert.
(A side note:  My iPhone, which I usually use to read blogs, is currently not allowing me to comment on other blogs. It seems to be another dratted Google+ related issue. I am reading blogs regularly, and if you are wondering at my silence it is due to the issue rather than from lack of interest your blog.  Hopefully I can get to the bottom of this issue soon!)


ellen b. said...

Wow...that's amazing that you have so many choices. I can imagine how lovely the sounds that you heard were...

Vee said...

So wonderful that Bernie was willing to attend. He looks interested! You're so correct about your photos making wonderful note cards! Now I must go to the PC because I want to hear those beautiful harps.

Vee said...

That was much too short so I moved on to a concert done at the Senate Building nearly two years ago. Now I must look at the list of music and see if it will jog my memory. I can't remember the song, though I've heard it many times before.

Kathie said...

That would be a lovely concert! I enjoyed the little clip. I thought they must be pedal harps. I play a lever harp or folk harp - which means the music is less complicated - but it's still very beautiful.

Rosella said...

Your descriptions, pictures and clip are so delightful! What a great concert! Our college's Music program also gives free Noon Hour Concerts which I love to attend. Never have I seen a harp Concert - so beautiful! Thanks for sharing. Hope you can get your computer problems ironed out!

Lorrie said...

What a beautiful evening you enjoyed. Love the whimsy of the hats on the harps, and their lights, too.

Sara said...

Wow, so many harps all together. That had to be something quite amazing to experience. Did you feel like you were floating on clouds?

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

What a wonderful evening! I would love to go to an event like this during the holiday season! Enjoy your week!

Lovella ♥ said...

I can imagine how heavenly it must have been. My brother learned to play harp quite beautifully. Theirs came from Brazil. I don't think I've ever heard a group of harps together though. Lovely.
The acoustics in that building must have been amazing.

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

Definitely notecard-worthy harp photos! I think you picked the perfect concert to begin the holiday season. And yes...they all do look happy.