Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Kantele classes begin during Heikinpäivä

HANCOCK -- Hello kantele players! Kantele opportunities for you, or for that friend of yours who wants to play, begin during the coming Heikinpäivä (Mid-Winter festival) celebration.

Kay Seppälä, instructor (musician, in foreground), and her kantele ensemble perform during the Dec. 1, 2011, Finnish Independence celebration in the Finnish American Heritage Center, Hancock. (Photo by Keweenaw Now)

Registration is required for these classes. You may register by calling Kay Seppälä at 523-6271.

Here are the kantele-related Heikinpäivä activities:

Monday, Jan. 16, 6 p.m.: Beginning kantele class by Kay Seppälä at Zion Lutheran, Hancock. $10 fee, instruments provided.

Saturday, Jan. 21, 9 a.m. - 7:30 p.m.: 11-string kantele making with Jim Lohmann, at Little Brothers, Hancock. $195 fee includes all materials, and participants take a kantele home with them. Jim's prototype is lovely, balanced, and has a clear, bright sound, Seppälä notes. A comparable kantele from Finland would cost you about $300.

Monday, Jan. 23, 6 p.m.: Beginning 10 / 11-string kantele by Kay Seppälä, Zion Lutheran, Hancock. $10 fee. Some instruments provided, if you did not make your own!

After Heikinpäivä, a kantele ensemble will be formed and will meet Mondays beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 6 at the Finnish American Heritage Center.

"We will choose 8 or 10 pieces to work on - for fives, tens/elevens, and whatever other instruments care to join us," Seppälä.says. "Come to play at whatever level you can. (Choose a few of the pieces, or work on them all!!) We will develop arrangements together. No fee, but we will take a donation to cover the cost of using the building. Drop me an e-mail, or give me a call 523-6271 to let me know that you are interested. As a group, we'll decide how often we will meet, but it will probably be weekly. Give it a try! What have you got to lose?"

For more Heikinpäivä information, go to and click on schedule.

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