Uncovering Historic Gems
The sound of an extraordinary musical instrument resonated for the first time in decades at Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery (QVMAG) last Friday, as gloved curators unpacked a set of 1900 Deagan aluminium organ chimes. This rare set, made in Canada, is the only one in Australia and one of only a dozen in existence. This particularly special set was owned by The Marvellous Corricks, Australia’s most illustrious family of entertainers, who played them to admiring audiences in packed theatres all over the world. After a successful career, the family settled in Launceston where their descendants still reside.
Lindy Hume, Artistic Director of Ten Days on the Island joined a small gathering lucky enough to witness this exciting and moving moment, among them percussionist Bruce Innocent and Mary Tilley, the granddaughter of Elsie Corrick, the youngest member of The Marvellous Corricks. Elsie’s siblings Amy, Ruby and Leonard played the chimes, which are designed to be played by up to three people.
“We’re excited that through a partnership between Ten Days on the Island and QVMAG, three Launceston musicians will learn to play the chimes in the months leading up to the festival, allowing a new generation to create and hear their enchanting sound, last heard in Victorian era vaudeville theatres.” Said Lindy Hume
“It’s magical to think about transporting contemporary audiences to a time when theatres were buzzing centres of entertainment for communities, and artists like The Marvellous Corricks spread wonder and delight, amazing audiences with the new technologies of the day. We’re working on something very special in collaboration with our friends at QVMAG so watch this space!”
Ten Days on the Island 2021 will run from 5 – 21 March and travel across Tasmania in the West + North West; North + North East and South.