Then there was another east coast academic institution, publicly
supported, not all that prestigious. A New Music Ensemble I was in
rehearsed there. Once we were doing a work with harpsichord, they said, Oh
Yeah, we have a harpsichord, if you can make it work you can use it.
Double manual, four choirs, 4' 8' 8' 16'. I forget the builder. Covered
with 2 inches of dust. I managed to make about the middle 3 octaves
playable, in about 3 hours of sweating blood. The reason I couldn't make
the rest work, is the jacks were missing. Apparently at sometime in the
past a person was playing it, every time s/he broke a plectrum, instead of
replacing the plectrum s/he'd throw that jack out, grab a jack from one
of those unnecessary high or low notes and slip it into place.
Anybody want to borrow that one for a Messiah performance with modern
Judith Conrad, Clavichord Player ([log in to unmask])
Music Minister, Calvary Baptist Church, Providence, RI
Director of Fall River Fipple Fluters
Piano and Harpsichord Tuner-Technician