Jim Mosher has hit the right chords for more than 30 years as a professional musician. The fact he’s found his perfect instrument of communication is all the better. His harp valued at more than $5,000 features 38 strings.
Mosher plays the harp at the Great Bend Renaissance Faire, which sets the perfect mood for the fantasy land that’s created by his special brand of entertainment. He said he enjoys when his audience derives enjoyment from his music. As Mosher plays, a cast of characters seem to dance magically at his bequest.
“The music from a harp is very appropriate for a Renaissance Faire,” he said.
His harp performance has taken on a higher calling with his work with patients who are going through end of life issues in Topeka. Mosher got asked to play for a patient by Jo Sumpter, who works with a retirement facility in Topeka.
“She had heard me play and asked whether I’d be interested in playing for someone she knew,” he said. “The music seems to be a form of communication that goes beyond my performance. The music creates a mood that seems to be appropriate for the moment. The music really helps some patients relax and gives them a sense of satisfaction. The people really appreciate what I’m able to do for them. I am just happy to help them.”
Mosher works full time at a local library, but music is his passion. He plays the harp regularly at Renaissance Faires in the Midwest and plays multiple instruments, including the oboe. He performs regularly with the Topeka Symphony Orchestra and plays with several other small musical groups. He learned his appreciation of classical music from his mother, who was an organ major.
“Music is my advocation,” he said. “I wish I could make by living full-time playing music. But the music I play and the enjoyment people derive from that music, is what I enjoy the most in my life. I feel very fortunate.”
The harp is a multi-stringed instrument which has the plane of its strings positioned perpendicularly to the soundboard. All harps have a neck, resonator and strings. Harp strings may be made of nylon, gut, wire or silk.
The Great Bend Renaissance Faire continues from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Expo grounds west of town. Admission to the faire will be $6 for adults and $2 for children 5-11 years old. Parking is free.
Event producer David LeRoy said the faire boasts the “best variety of history and fantasy world.”
It features three stages — King Henry, Black Beard and Rob Roy. Each stage features performers from all over the Midwest with music, magic, comedy and other acts. There will also be some moving performers for an estimated audience of several hundred people each day.
LeRoy said he has put together a roster of novelty entertainment and unique artisan merchants for this family-fun history festival.
“The unique location utilizes the open space and tree area to set up and capture the medieval fun and play,” he said.
For more information go to www.greatbendrenaissancefair.net or call LeRoy at 620-617-1357.