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Aug 8, 2011

Frank Steijns Carillon Player: Two Fists For Africa

TWO FISTS FOR AFRICA 
High up in the church tower of the St. Pancratius church in Heerlen, carillon player Frank Steijns is calling from behind the carillon for awareness of the starving in Africa.
Limburger by Wiel Beijer ►For many centuries, the carillon has been telling the people what has been going on in their city. I am telling the people today what is going on, specifically in the Horn of Africa. City Carillon player Frank Steijns did not need to be asked twice to participate in this musical action of the Red Cross to raise awareness of the starving in Africa. Not only is he busy with his music, but Frank is well aware of the situation of the people in Africa. Together with his wife, who is a physician, they formed the foundation 'Doctors and Arts', (In Dutch Arts and Arts) and is now very active in the action to collect funds into Account 555 for the people in need.
High up in the church tower now, we have climbed 97 steps in order to reach Frank Steijns’ concert podium. We notice many passersby down on the church square and people visiting the terraces look up quite a bit as the carillon player plays "We are the World" by Michael Jackson. But the people continue on their Saturday routine to the market or the stores. "Isn’t it lonely up here giving a concert without having contact with the people?" you then ask.
"I am also a violinist in André Rieu’s Johann Strauss’ orchestra. There we reach a lot of people and receive lots of applause. In the orchestra, I am one of many. Here I am alone and never see my public. When I come back down, I occasionally hear someone on the street whistle the tune I just played, and then I know my playing had its effect", say Frank Steijns.
With his fists he "hammers" on the carillon. Two fists for Africa. He hammers away with a suppressed rage. After "We are the World’ he played "Image" by John Lennon and then Gymnopédie by Eric Satie. We were privileged to enjoy the concert high up in the tower, just beneath the bells. 49 handles are connected by wires to the same amount of clappers.
"The bigger the tower, the heavier are the bells. The St Martinus church in Weert has approximately 20,000 kilos (44,000 lbs) in bronze. Heerlen has half that much. This is a middle class carillon. I am talking about the weight of the bells. But as far as sound is concerned, it is one of the best sounds in the country".
The Netherlands is a very good country for carillon players. Our country has half the carillons of the entire world. No wonder the Red Cross asked the carillon players in their church towers to bring awareness to the city people of the misery in Africa.
And as we were descending the 97 steps, Frank played "Heal the World". And that is what is still needed ...
Thanks to John for Sending and Translating this for us

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you Frank, along with joy is healing and no better way to express that is through music, it connects to the soul and the emotions and can speak louder than words. We need more positive action in the world today to wake us up.

Martha

InekeHolland said...

What a surprise to read that Frank is married and that his wife is a doctor.....
JSO members are very good in keeping their private life a secret!
I wish them lots of happiness!
Ineke.

Anonymous said...

I too am so happy for Frank. He is one of my favourite JSO players. Mhorag.

Anonymous said...

My, what a busy (and gifted) musician, Frank is.
Carillon. violin, piano, music arranger and I've probably left out a lot
A special person and I'm sure his wife is a treasure, too.
Like others, I am happy for them and hope for much success with their efforts to help hungry people.

Laurie

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Pierre and André September 30, 2016 Maastricht

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Photo Taken at Mexico City Concert ~ September 2013

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