KENNEDY - As part of the summer reading program, singer Nan Hoffman was recently hosted by the Kennedy Free Library.
Using both guitar and autoharp to accompany her lovely soprano, Hoffman played a variety of pieces from her repertoire. She opened with a song by legendary performer Pete Seeger, and told an interesting story about meeting him when he gave one of his last performances in Buffalo. Hoffman went on to perform several songs related to books that can be found in local libraries. During one number, she had audience members use instruments made with native designs to make sound effects.
Throughout her performance, Hoffman told many tales about the history of her music and her instruments. One fun story was about the wooden toys known as "limberjacks." Designed with movable parts so they appear to be walking and dancing as one bounces them by tapping on a board, the toys have become rhythm instruments as well. Hoffman used a teddy bear limberjack while performing at the Teddy Roosevelt museum for the 100th anniversary of the teddy bear. Also, she gave a short history of the autoharp, which was actually developed in this country.
Nan Hoffman is pictured singing “I’ll Fly Away” while accompanying herself on the autoharp during her concert at the Kennedy Free Library.
Photo by Rose Mary Carver
Those present really enjoyed her varied songs and stories. Hoffman engages with her audience members, no matter what their ages.
Hoffman will be performing in many venues as part of the summer reading program. Visit her website, www.nanhoffman.com, for updates. She also has several CDs out, as well as some limbertoys and wooden train whistles, which are available online as well.