Women harmonicists

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To: Emma and anyone wondering about female harmonica players.
From: Jack (male)

I pulled this out of my first post on HARP-L which was 19-Mar-1992.

7. GENERAL INTEREST: (And of special interest to Carolyn Mayr)
   The World Harmonica Championships, Detroit, Mich. 1991, was won hands
   down by Maria Wolfsberger, a young lady from Austria, she was 17 then.
   Tidbit- She blew out a reed about an hour before competition and had no
   time for repairs so she bought a new Hohner 280 at one of the vendor
   tables. She asked if she could try it and proceeded to play the chromatic
   scale up and down the full four octave range faster than I've ever heard.
   Then stated politely "It'll do". There were many fine harmonicists there
   (mostly from Europe, China & Japan - sigh). Her closest competition was
   Naoko Takeuchi, a Japanese girl (age 14), who would have won except she
   chose not to play the required test piece. She was given a special award.
   Yes - women can play the harmonica too.

11-Mar-1994 update (has it really been two years?

   Maria Wolfsberger had to compete in the adult category last year (1993) at 
   the World Harmonica Championships in Trossingen, Germany. Again, she won.

   Naoko Takeuchi did not compete - possibly due to school. But she is still 
   active with harmonica in Japan.

   The only professional female harmonicist that comes to mind is Mildred 
   Mulcay (of the famed Mulcay's circa 1950's). She no longer performs. In 
   their prime the Mulcay's were known internationally. They had at least one 
   major hit recording "My Happiness". Mildred played lead chromatic - 
   beautifully I might add. Her husband, Jimmy, passed away years ago. Mildred 
   and Don Les teamed up for a while and I had the pleasure of hearing her 
   perform at a SPAH convention in Detroit (1984/5?).

   Why are there no women playing professionally today? I don't know, maybe 
   they realize that you can't make a living playing harmonica.
+ Jack N. Ely, Operations Mgr.    Internet: SYS_ELY@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx +
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