r By Shaunalei Andersen, Utah Valley UU
The Utah Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship hosted a concert by folk instrumentalists Lisa Lynne and Aryeh Frankfurter on Sunday, May 7. Held in the sanctuary of the historic Springville Community Presbyterian Church, the “Concert of Celtic harp, rare instruments, and wondrous stories” – as the couple called it – was a moving experience which attendees will not soon forget.
The concert was a sensory feast which nourished the spirits of all in attendance. Debbie Costello of Spanish Fork tearfully commented after the concert, “I had no idea . . .” And Orem resident Brenda Francis extolled the event online: “Seriously an amazing concert. The music tugged at me in a way I cannot explain.”
What made for such a moving experience? Was it the amazing artistry of the performers; their engaging personalities and musical expression? The novelty of never-before-seen instruments; the repertoire of light and airy pieces balanced by more pathos-inducing melodies in minor keys; the ethereal beauty of the stained-glass sanctuary teeming with rays of afternoon sun; the richness of the acoustics which moved the music masterfully around the room? Was it the musicians’ engaging stories of music helping to heal the broken spirit of a Columbine High survivor, bring strangers together in a busy Riverside hospital, and provide the context for the two of them to meet, collaborate, and eventually fall in love? Yes, it was all of that!
Naturally, the audience gave the performers a standing ovation, after which they were treated to an encore number. At the conclusion of the concert, Lynne moved her harp off the stage to the floor level and invited audience members to take turns plucking on it as she provided one-handed accompaniment. These mini duets were simple but beautiful, delighting not only the performers and those surrounding them but Lynne herself.
Lisa Lynne and Aryeh Frankfurter are professional performers, composers and recording artists who’ve reached a combined total of over one million albums sold (over the 25-plus years of their professional careers). The rare instruments which they play include Celtic and Irish harp, Swedish nyckelharpa, Ukrainian Bandura and a mandolin-like cittern. In addition to maintaining a small farm in Oregon, the couple spends a good portion of each year traveling around the United States and Canada (or more distant shores) to perform at venues small and large. The couple can be found online at lisalynne.com and lionharp.com.
For almost 20 years, the Utah Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship has been a beacon of light for those seeking an inclusive spiritual community. With church services on the second and fourth Sundays of each month during the school year, the fellowship meets to explore and encourage personal meaning, the importance of diversity, wisdom and justice in our own lives and the greater community, and right relationship with the earth and all the web of life of which we are a part. For more information, contact the fellowship by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.