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MMD > Archives > September 1996 > 1996.09.04 > 01Prev  Next

Chicago MBSI Convention
By Beatrice Robertson

The worst part of any MBSI meeting is saying good-bye to friends that we won't see until next year in Seattle, if then. With the extremely large group of European members in Chicago, we probably won't see them again for more that one year. So we keep the correspondence and E-Mail flowing.

I personally had the opportunity to spend time with Philippe Rouille, who participates on our list from Paris, and Arthur Ord-Hume, the prodigious author from England. Since I picked them both up at the airport (fortunately I knew Philippe and Philippe knew Arthur, or that could have been a very interesting experience!), my introduction to Arthur was of a casual note. Both Philippe and Arthur have a very quick sense of humor, and we got off to a great start on what has proved to be an instant friendship.

A bit about Arthur Ord-Hume. I had been told that the man was very pompous and stuffy, and had no sense of humor at all. I have to say that they were not talking about the man we saw and laughed with this week. From early morning breakfast to late night get-togethers, he kept us laughing! Although the Swiss visitors were not happy about his Thurs. evening talk, which questioned the historical authenticity of their claim that Favre was the inventor of the steel comb, no one came to blows. His meetings with the other European Society officers Juergen Hocker and Helmut Kowar, along with the MBSI president, Frank Metzger, will help to implement further sharing of research and articles among the various groups.

Friday was an incredibly busy day in Chicago. Friday morning started with an early breakfast and awards ceremony. The workshops were truly outstanding: Chris Eric talking about early music boxes, Arlette Rusticelli, owner of the Baud Museum in Switzerland, spoke about the 40 years of the Museum and about their repair shop, Peter Schuhknecht spoke about arranging music for mechanical instruments, Johnny Verbeeck spoke about the history of Verbeeck organs, Hans Schmitz on the subject of Welte-Mignon Rolls, Dave Ramey, Jr. about the Banjo-Orchestra, Don Barr about the Mills Violano, Juergen Hocker about Contemporary Music for Piano Rolls, Helmut Kowar about the Music on Mechanical Instruments, and Etienne Blyelle-Horngacher about Primitive Music Boxes. The biggest problem was making the choice, since we had time for only three workshops.

The very crowded and hectic mart followed in the afternoon. With the very large crowd, and the many tables, it was difficult to move, let alone see what you wanted to purchase. However, judging from the many things being carried by members with big smiles on their faces, I think it was a highly successful mart.

The auction followed in the evening. Since I had made several purchases at the mart and there was not much of interest to me in the auction, perhaps someone else in the group will comment further - I did hear that not many items were sold, other than small items and books, which sold well.

Next addition later - I'm back in Indiana and suffering withdrawing from all the stimulating conversation and wonderful mechanical music. I'll be looking forward to Jody's report!

Beatrice Robertson

P.S. Isn't it fun to try to find your desk after you've been away a few days? Let me know when you catch up, and I'll do an article on the "Flying Pig" trip!

[ Ed. Note: Send it any time you want, Beatrice -- Jody has had enough
[ rest! -- Robbie

(Message sent Tue 3 Sep 1996, 12:22:16 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)

Key Words in Subject:  Chicago, Convention, MBSI

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