Hohner Sponsors Harmonica Mass Appeal in NYC
On June 21, 2012, Hohner sponsored the Make Music New York (MMNY) Mass Appeal event in New York’s Central Park and donated free harmonicas to the first 100 attendees.
Renowned harmonica virtuoso Jia-Yi He led the audience, which included New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, through beginner ballads such as “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” and “When the Saints Go Marching In.” After just 40 minutes, He brought each member of his makeshift band—experts and beginners alike—to harmony.
“This event stood out because everyone could play,” said He while holding a donated Hohner harmonica. “Since Hohner was able to donate their harmonicas, experienced and beginner players were all able to play together—even the mayor!” Bloomberg, who admitted to having only some harmonica experience, caught on quickly and played along with the crowd under Jia-Yi He’s guidance.
The festival, inspired by the Fête de la Musique in France, began in New York City in 2007. Now with over 460 similar events in cities around the world, the premise is to produce an all-day festival of free concerts and musical activities on the first day of summer. From 10 in the morning to 10 at night, anything from hip-hop to opera and jazz to punk rock can be found on the streets, sidewalks, stoops, and parks of the five boroughs of New York City.