Jim Murphy & Sons

‘Acoustic Eidolon’ melds mellow cello with unique ‘guitjo’

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The cello of XXXX and the "guitjo" of XXXX come together in more ways than you might imagine on Wednesday, Sept. 9, the six "Americana in the Gardens" concert series.

The cello of Hannah Alkire and the “guitjo” of Joe Scott come together in more ways than you might imagine on Wednesday, Sept. 9, the six “Americana in the Gardens” concert series.

The sixth performance of the “Americana in the Springfield Botanical Gardens” concert series will feature two musicians from Boulder, Colo., whose story alone is worthy of appreciation. Of necessity, the performance at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 9, will be at the Gray/Campbell Farmstead in Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park because of the upcoming Japanese Fall Festival beginning on Sept. 11.

Acoustic Eidolon is a partnership on several levels between Joe Scott and Hannah Alkire, a married couple who met serendipitously as neighbors recruited for a studio recording that turned out to be three doors down and across the street.

There is no way to condense this remarkable relationship to a short story, but suffice it to report that eventually they teamed up, first as a duo, and eventually as a family with two sons and a musical exploration that features the cello and guitjo, an instrument he invented which enables him to play a total of 14 strings simultaneously.

The couple’s original musical palette has been described as “world music for the soul” and includes classically influenced Celtic, folk and Latin music. Sample the duo’s music and read about them individually at acousticeidolon.com.

Their one-hour performance benefits the Kickapoo Edge Prairie, one of five naturalized areas among the 20 themed gardens and 15 special collections in the Springfield Botanical Gardens located in the public park at 2400 S. Scenic Ave. in southwest Springfield.

Admission is a suggested donation of $10 for adults, says Ric Mayer, chair of the Friends of the Garden group that develops and maintains the Kickapoo Edge Prairie and a volunteer with the Missouri Prairie Foundation, another nonprofit that is sponsoring the concert series.

Be sure to bring a lawn chair or blanket for more comfortable seating. In case of inclement weather, the concert will be held inside the Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center. Free parking is available nearby. In case of rain, the concert will be moved inside at the botanical center.

The final date and performance in the series will feature Brisa Marina at 6:30 p.m. on October 14, 2015. Blending romantic with the modern, Rob and Drew Pommert create classical music ambiance for any occasion. This classical guitar duet and vocal ensemble will create the music you have been waiting for. For more information, call the Botanical Center at 417.891.1515 or Ric Mayer at 417.995.3943.

Friends of the Garden tax-deductible annual memberships on several levels can be purchased at the Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center gift shop. For more information, visit us on Facebook or at FriendsoftheGarden.org.

George Freeman is a veteran journalist and photographer. An award-winning writer, editor and columnist in Springfield, Mo., with more than 50 years experience. His preference is for positive and uplifting stories about people, places, traditions and trends that make the Ozarks one of the most livable regions anywhere. A member of the Garden Writers Association of America, he is a past-president of the Society of Professional Journalists of Southwest Missouri, the Kansas and Ohio AP societies; a board member of Friends of the Garden and a member of the Rotary Club of Springfield. In 1976, he traveled to India as a member of a Rotary Foundation Group Study Exchange Team.

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