• December 21, 2014

One man’s trash another’s musical instrument

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Posted: Friday, August 1, 2014 4:30 am

“Music is everywhere, and any object, including a piece of trash, can make music,” Dale Colgrove, a performer and music educator, said as he played a melody on a flute made from a straw.

Combining science and music, Colgrove entertained the crowd at the Stewart C. Meyer Harker Heights Library during Wednesday’s Greychurch Science of Music Education show.

A one-man band and composer, Colgrove played all of the instruments, including playing two recorders at the same time.

More than 80 children, and many adults, sat enthralled listening to the sounds that came from his array of 30 instruments. With a collection of homemade and professional instruments ranging from a cigar box banjo to a three-foot recorder, he played movie theme songs and golden oldies while explaining music theories.

“Everyone can play music, but you don’t know it because you think it takes a big, expensive instrument, but it doesn’t,” Colgrove said.

Alwin Collado, a library volunteer, participated in a musical experiment using string tied to a piece of steel rebar. Collado held the string up to his ears and when Colgrove struck the metal, the sound traveled up the string.

“It sounded like a loud bong in my head,” Collado said.

Violinist Asher Dunton never imaged playing the steel rebar.

“Most people would never see a piece of trash as a music instrument, but he explained how simple it is to make something,” Dunton said.

Colgrove taught himself to play the harmonica as a child and hasn’t stopped making music. Currently, he is a band director in Arlington Independent School District, and collects musical instruments that he uses in his shows. He travels throughout the state hoping to inspire future musicians and performers.

“In many school districts that don’t have music programs, the kids are starved for exposure to the arts, and this is one way to try to fill that void,” he said.

Emily Haurane brings her three children to the library’s Wacky Wednesday events each week, and thought this show was one of the best.

“It was wonderful to see so many different instruments that you won’t see everyday,” Haurane said. “It makes you think outside the box about music.”

Next week’s installment is a pet party from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Wednesday at the Harker Heights Pet Adoption Center, 403 Indian Trail. Participants will visit the center for a tour, where they will enjoy crafts, bounce houses and face painting.

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