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#55253 - 10/15/06 09:25 AM Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,249
Terrytunes Offline
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Terrytunes  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,249
Tewksbury MA
I recently received a message from Pat Frederick advising that a town selectman is considering repossessing the building that currently houses the Frederick’s piano collection.

After a town building went unused for a period of time, the Fredericks sought it out as a location to house their piano collection. A 10-year contract with the town was agreed upon, and the Fredericks assumed responsibility for all building maintenance. Since signing the contract in 2000, the Fredericks have been devoted to the upkeep of the former town library, adding many updates and landscaping the grounds.

Pat & Michael Frederick provide the public a rare opportunity to enjoy the most comprehensive collection of historical (playing) grand pianos in the US. The Frederick piano collection is also a source of musical pleasure during the spring and fall concert season. As a study center, it offers a unique opportunity for those who seek to gain an understanding of these treasured instruments. The Fredericks are well-known for their unselfish contributions of time, money and energy to promote the appreciation and understanding of the collection.

A few town officials are now suggesting the possibility of breaking the previously agreed-upon lease for the center, although the majority of the community will support the Frederick collection as a valued town contribution.

I understand many of you who read this request have never visited the Frederick piano collection but please consider this a cause worthy of your efforts. Please forward a response to the town office in Ashburnham, MA advising the town officials on the importance of the historical piano collection to both their community and to the visitors who travel from afar to view/play their collection.

The Select Board
Town Hall
Main St
Ashburnham, MA 01430


Long live our passion for the piano!

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#55254 - 10/15/06 09:52 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Jul 2005
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John Citron Offline
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Haverhill, Massachusetts
Terry,

I received an email from Brian (Reliv4all) about this as well. He was at a concert last week, and Patricia spoke to him about this. He has placed brochures about the museum all over the bulletin boards at New England Conservatory where his son studies piano.

I will be attending a concert today, and I will see what I can do. Perhaps we could:

---- Have a Piano World Petition sent to the town hall. (imagine 14,000 - Plus signatures!)

---- An Piano World Piano Party in Ashburnham.
We could do one of our big bashes, with everyone invited including the public. The only difference would be a big fund raiser as well to help support the museum.

---- I'll try again with public TV. WGBH never responded back, but I have some friends in public radio so perhaps I can get them to help this time. I could help put together a program about the museum and help spread the word. In addition, mentioning what the evil town officials wish to do would maybe scare them out of it.

Anyway these are a couple of ideas that have bounced around my hollow head just now.

I am truely saddened by this, and it really is too bad that these town officials do not realize the value this museum brings to their venue. I am sure if this was a sports museum, they wouldn't think about this!

As visitors, we support the local merchants. I know I do by purchasing stuff at the convenience store. I also end up filling my gas tank before I leave. This is only a small example of what's going back to the town out of this.

There are plenty of empty building in the town, so why don't the officials look into leasing one of those? They don't know how difficult it would be to move this valuable collection elsewhere. I am sure if worse came to worse, the Fredericks could move the collection to Fitchburg, who I am sure would want the added-value and business a venue such as this brings. Fitchburg, and the surrounding mill towns have plenty of empty mills, which make very nice concert halls and museum space.


John


Nothing.
#55255 - 10/15/06 10:32 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Piano World Offline
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Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Terry,

Are these people nuts? Do they not realize what a wonderful and unique historical collection they have right in their town?

Does the Town Hall / Board have an email address too?

I like John's suggestions, and I agree we should write to the board, but if we had an email address we could also email them.

John... maybe Scott Houston (the Piano Guy) has some connections too.

I have to imagine some of our members are involved in other media too (newspapers, magazines, TV, etc.)

Here is one of the tours I took with a group of our forums members, we had a great time...
http://www.pianoworld.com/ubb/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?/topic/22/43.html

Seeing, hearing, and playing all those fantastic historical pianos is an experience you don't forget.

Best,

Frank B.


- Frank B.
Founder / Owner / Host
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www.PianoSupplies.com
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-------------------------
It's Fun To Play the Piano ... PLEASE Pass It On!
Invite everyone you know to join our piano forums!


#55256 - 10/15/06 01:17 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,249
Terrytunes Offline
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Posts: 1,249
Tewksbury MA
I'm dashing out of here in a few minutes to attend the last concert for the fall season, so I'll talk to Pat regarding the email.

I'm guessing she had her reasons for requesting a reply of support by snail mail.

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#55257 - 10/15/06 08:09 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
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Posts: 1,249
Terrytunes Offline
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Terrytunes  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,249
Tewksbury MA
I had a few brief moments after todays concert to discuss further details of Ashburnham politicians with Pat Frederick.

During our discussion Pat agreed that also using email would be as beneficial as forwarding a note through the US Postal Service.

This link will take you to the front page of the Ashburnham website

As you scroll down to view the towns "Culture and Recreation" sights, you can't help but wonder why the Frederick Historical Piano Collection and Study Center is not listed????!!!! :b:


You'll find an email address for the Town Selectment under, Government, Board of Selectman.

sturcotte@ashburnham-ma.gov

This email address is for Sylvia Turcotte who is the Admin Asst for the selectmen.

Apparently the selectman don't have email addresses!! :rolleyes:

#55258 - 10/16/06 07:27 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Mar 2005
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lilylady Offline
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boston north
More info:
http://www.sentinelandenterprise.com/ci_4458050

They are having a meeting tonite. Emails might be in order?

It seems that Whidden is the one proposing the change:
"Jim Whidden, a member of the Town Hall Renovation Committee, has proposed that town officials move some municipal offices into the adjacent Stevens building while the town hall undergoes renovations next year."

Seems that Jonathan Dennehy, who is Chairman of Board of Selectman is running for State Representative, although his term for Chairman is not up until 2007. His email for election is
jmd@dennehy.us

Mark Carlisle (978) 827-5080 21 Water St, Ashburnham, MA 01430 ; Selectman

Christopher Gagnon, could not find address or email, but seems to be supporting the Fredericks

Local Newspaper:
www.sentinelandenterprise.com


"Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything."
#55259 - 10/16/06 11:02 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Piano World Offline
Piano World  Offline



Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
I've emailed the following letter to Mr. Dennehy...

Dear Mr. Dennehy,

My name is Frank Baxter, I am the founder and owner of Piano World (www.PianoWorld.com), one
of the most popular piano web sites in the world.

It has come to our attention that the town of Ashburnham is considering breaking the lease the Frederick's have
to house their rare and historically significant collection.

We would respectfully ask the town to reconsider this misguided move.

Our 19,000+ piano forums members, and literally millions of visitors are all piano enthusiast.
We appreciate the beauty and and rarity of these incredible instruments.

Many of our members have visited the Frederick's collection (spending money in your fine town when we do).
These are one-of-a-kind irreplaceable pianos, whose historical significance can not be overstated.

There have been many articles written (in newspapers and magazines) about the Frederick's collection and your town.
There have also been many posts on our world famous piano forums, giving glowing reviews of the pianos, the
Frederick's, and the town of Ashburnham.

The collection is truly a national treasure, and should be treated as such.

The old library is the perfect setting for this display, they compliment each other well.
Whenever the collection is mentioned, the town and library are mentioned too, they have become as one.

It would be a travesty to separate the Frederick's collection from the setting everyone now associates it with.

Instead of considering kicking them out of their home, you should be celebrating (and promoting) the unique value
their collection brings to your town.

Please exercise good judgement here, and convince the town to let this musical treasure remain in it's home.
Thank you for understanding, and for doing the right thing.

Sincerely Yours,

Frank Baxter
Founder/Owner
Piano World
www.PianoWorld.com
Home of the World Famous Piano Forums
http://www.pianoworld.com/ubb/ubb/ultimatebb.php


- Frank B.
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-------------------------
It's Fun To Play the Piano ... PLEASE Pass It On!
Invite everyone you know to join our piano forums!


#55260 - 10/16/06 11:27 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Aug 2006
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NeilOS Offline
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Los Angeles
October 16, 2006

What a lack of foresight, not to mention a dearth of civic pride, to consider disenfranchising the Frederick Historical Piano Collection. Most towns would rally to support this type of collection and promote it as a genuine asset. Shame.

Neil Stannard, DMA
Concet Pianist


Concert Pianist, University Professor, Private Teacher in Los Angeles
Blog: http://www.pianoteacherlosangeles.com/
#55261 - 10/16/06 11:41 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
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Posts: 2,899
LisztAddict Offline
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Florida
I can't believe how some people could even come up with the idea of shutting down a place like this.

#55262 - 10/16/06 11:51 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Feb 2005
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Sam Casey Offline
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SW Missouri
Here's my letter:

Mr. Dennehy,

It has been called to my attention that your town selectmen are considering making the old library building unavailable to the Frederick Historic Piano Collection. This is a mistake.

The lasting symbol of greatness for any city is how its government supports and facilitates art. The government of Ashburnham has done great credit to itself by creating a home for these rare instruments and allowing the Fredericks to display them with their vast and intimate knowledge. The collection and its guardians are rare and unique treasures. I visited a few years back and was thoroughly enchanted. I also spent money in Ashburnham as a tourist. I have subsequently sent numerous people there who likewise contributed to your local economy. The Collection is a jewel in your community's crown and should remain unmolested indefinitely. In many ways, it has put Ashburnham on the map.

We rarely have a chance to do a verifiably right thing. This is your community's chance to display wisdom, foresight and dedication to a quality of life.


Sincerely,

Sam Casey
Marshfield Missouri.

#55263 - 10/16/06 11:57 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 37
littlePianoGirl Offline
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littlePianoGirl  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 37
this is crazy and makes me really sad as i have not gotten a chance to visit yet. i have sent an email to dennehy to ask him to help make sure the place stays where it belongs and that the town should honor their word about the lease contract.


I love playing scales!
#55264 - 10/16/06 12:06 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,614
IrishMak Offline
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IrishMak  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,614
New Hampshire, USA
I sent an email, as well. I made sure to point out that, altho the opinion of an out-of-state person may not seem important, those who do travel to Ashburnham usually end up spending money while there, and that is a plus for the town itself. Hey, money talks, especially to a politician, right??? wink


-Mak

1889 Mason & Hamlin screwstringer upright
Kawai MP-4 digital

---------------------------
When life hands you lemons, throw them back and add some of your own. Stupid life.
#55265 - 10/16/06 12:10 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Piano World Offline
Piano World  Offline



Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Great, thanks everyone.
Please keep the emails, snail mail, and/or calls coming. This is important.

One of our members emailed me this...

==================================================
Don't know, but it might help to get emails going right away. Our city council at least reads them and actually reacts to them at times :-)


sturcotte@ashburnham-ma.gov


The above is the city of Ashburnham Selectmen's Administrative Assistants email (Sylvia Turcotte).


Verify it at http://www.ashburnham-ma.gov/ Go to the boxes and on the left is a Selectmen button, click on it and her addy is at the bottom.


Already sent her a note.

===============================================


- Frank B.
Founder / Owner / Host
www.PianoWorld.com
www.PianoSupplies.com
Find Us On:
Facebook.com/PianoWorldDotCom
ProRecord.info
Twitter.com/PianoWorld
www.youtube.com/PianoWorldDotCom
www.linkedin.com/in/pianoworld
Skype: PianoWorldDotCom
My Keyboards:
Estonia L-190 w/ ProRecord, Yamaha P-80, Estey 1895 Pump Organ, Harpsichord (kit), Clavichord (kit), Bilhorn Telescope Organ c 1880
-------------------------
It's Fun To Play the Piano ... PLEASE Pass It On!
Invite everyone you know to join our piano forums!


#55266 - 10/16/06 12:34 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 67
Xav Offline
Full Member
Xav  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 67
someone should write a mail... and then we should all send the same mail with all our different accounts laugh
(i have 3 accounts, hotmail, gmail, and yahoo... xD)

or have signatures... a programmer may know how to make someone enter in certain webpage and sign... then we send them a mail with all the signatures :p

Pianoworld has 19000 members so it wouldnt be difficult to reach a high number of signs... smile


xav...keylover
#55267 - 10/16/06 12:43 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 10,887
Piano*Dad Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Piano*Dad  Offline
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Williamsburg, VA
Fortunately or unfortunately, this is a wake up call for the Frederick Collection. Their use of a public building is probably not a viable long run arrangement. If we succeed in getting the town to back off for the moment, there is no guarantee that the lease will be renewed when it expires. Then everything that they have put into the building may be wasted investment.

Local politics can be quite volatile. If the supporters of the Frederick Collection want stability, they may have a breathing space in which to think about acquiring their own building. That way they could tailor its structure to their needs without fearing the consequences of the politics of the moment.


P.S. Xav, PW may have 19K who have signed up over the years, but the number of active members is far smaller.

#55268 - 10/16/06 12:45 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 198
Bosendorfer88 Offline
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Bosendorfer88  Offline
Full Member

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Posts: 198
Montreal
Just sent an email
What brought such an idea, really!


"Music expresses that which cannot be said and upon which it is impossible to remain silent"-Victor Hugo
#55269 - 10/16/06 01:10 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 10,887
Piano*Dad Offline
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Williamsburg, VA
Here's my email to Mr. Dennehy,

Dear Mr. Dennehy,

I would like to add my voice to the others who have e-mailed their concerns over the town's potential early termination of the lease that permits the Frederick Collection to use a town building. A collection of usable historical instruments of this sort is a treasure. One aspect of good government is facilitating the development of more resources like this for public use. Unfortunately, the debate over early termination of the lease sends exactly the wrong signal about public commitment to the arts and about public commitment period.

I also note that the Ashburham web site makes no mention of the Frederick Collection under Culture & Recreation. This may be a simple omission, but it can also be interpreted as a sign of what is considered culturally important and what isn't.

I live in Williamsburg. At present we have one historic instrument, a fully restored 1816 Broadwood Piano that is the twin of one sent to Beethoven in Vienna. My thirteen year old son recently had the opportunity to play music of the period on this piano. Like many of the pianos in the Frederick Collection, our Broadwood isn't merely a museum piece. That one experience is such an opportunity for a young musician to understand music in a new way. You have a complete collection of such instruments in your city. Please cherish it, or one day you may awake to find that it has moved elsewhere where it is valued more highly.

#55270 - 10/16/06 01:27 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 18,184
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012
Monica K.  Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 18,184
Lexington, Kentucky
Here's mine:

Dear Ms. Turcotte,

I understand that you are the contact person for the Town Selectmen. Could you please pass on this letter to them?

I am writing because I recently became aware that discussion had taken place regarding a proposal to terminate the lease for the building where the Frederick Historic Piano Collection is currently housed. I hope that your board will reconsider this proposal. Pianos are not easily moved (particularly fragile historic specimens), and being forced to move could very easily mean the dissolution of the exhibition.

I suppose you may wonder why somebody who does not live in the area would care. Although I live in Kentucky, I plan to visit Boston for a conference next spring, and on my travel agenda was a side trip to see these pianos. I would be very disappointed if that opportunity were denied.

It seems strange to me that a city would not take advantage of its unique features. Pretty much any city these days has Walmart, Starbucks, or even art galleries and theaters. Many cities will also have aquariums and science or natural history museums. But how many cities in the United States have a museum of antique pianos? Rather than undermining this collection, all of you selectmen should revel in it and support this very important civic asset.

Yours truly,

Monica Kern
Lexington, KY


Mason & Hamlin A -- 91997
My YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/pianomonica
[Linked Image][Linked Image][Linked Image]
#55271 - 10/16/06 01:40 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Jul 2005
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musdan Offline
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musdan  Offline
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I've never been to the Frederick Historic Piano but would love to visit this great place.

Sent an email just now, hope that all of this interest from in and out of state influences their decision so that we might have the opportunity to see what must be a great museum.

These selectpersons must have their heads in the sand - what in the world are they thinking of?

confused bah

#55272 - 10/16/06 02:31 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,925
John Citron Offline
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John Citron  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,925
Haverhill, Massachusetts
I have sent off my letter of support for the museum. Hopefully Ms. Turcotte's email box isn't too full. (or maybe it is better that it is stuffed with support for the museum). smile

John


Nothing.
#55273 - 10/16/06 03:03 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 3,198
Les Koltvedt Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Les Koltvedt  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 3,198
Canton, MI
Hopefully it makes a difference...just sent mine...


Les Koltvedt
LK Piano
Servicing the S. Eastern Michigan Area
PTG Associate
#55274 - 10/16/06 03:43 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 6
fabrizio Offline
Junior Member
fabrizio  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 6
Laguna Niguel, CA
This is a very sad issue, I hope really it will work out.

I have sent my e-mail to the above address (sturcotte@ashburnham-ma.gov) as president of Virtual Sheet Music, Inc and with the support of over 75,000 Members and music lovers on our website.

I hope this can help.

If I can help further, I could post a thread on our forums where hundreds of people are browsing every day. I am just asking permission for that.

All the best,
Fabrizio Ferrari


Virtual Sheet Music, Inc.
Classical Sheet Music Downloads®
http://www.virtualsheetmusic.com
#55275 - 10/16/06 09:01 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 54
RedTop Offline
Full Member
RedTop  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 54
Peterborough, NH
The Fredericks certainly deserve our support in their hour of need. I have sent an s-mail to the selectmen and would certainly sign a petition and attend an event to support the museum. They are truly fine people and their work must continue.

Gary

#55276 - 10/17/06 12:02 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 1
Claude Offline
Junior Member
Claude  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 1
Netherlands
Quote
Originally posted by Terrytunes:
I recently received a message from Pat Frederick advising that a town selectman is considering repossessing the building that currently houses the Frederick’s piano collection.

After a town building went unused for a period of time, the Fredericks sought it out as a location to house their piano collection. A 10-year contract with the town was agreed upon, and the Fredericks assumed responsibility for all building maintenance. Since signing the contract in 2000, the Fredericks have been devoted to the upkeep of the former town library, adding many updates and landscaping the grounds.

Pat & Michael Frederick provide the public a rare opportunity to enjoy the most comprehensive collection of historical (playing) grand pianos in the US. The Frederick piano collection is also a source of musical pleasure during the spring and fall concert season. As a study center, it offers a unique opportunity for those who seek to gain an understanding of these treasured instruments. The Fredericks are well-known for their unselfish contributions of time, money and energy to promote the appreciation and understanding of the collection.

A few town officials are now suggesting the possibility of breaking the previously agreed-upon lease for the center, although the majority of the community will support the Frederick collection as a valued town contribution.

I understand many of you who read this request have never visited the Frederick piano collection but please consider this a cause worthy of your efforts. [b]Please forward a response to the town office in Ashburnham, MA advising the town officials on the importance of the historical piano collection to both their community and to the visitors who travel from afar to view/play their collection.


The Select Board
Town Hall
Main St
Ashburnham, MA 01430


Long live our passion for the piano! [/b]


Claude LaVallee - Piano Tuning Services World-wide
Stadhouderskade #136
1074AZ Amsterdam Netherlands

http://www.experienceamsterdam.com/concert_services.html
= world phone: +31 65 466 3979
#55277 - 10/17/06 10:42 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,249
Terrytunes Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Terrytunes  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,249
Tewksbury MA
Quote
Originally posted by fabrizio:
This is a very sad issue, I hope really it will work out.

I have sent my e-mail to the above address (sturcotte@ashburnham-ma.gov) as president of Virtual Sheet Music, Inc and with the support of over 75,000 Members and music lovers on our website.

I hope this can help.

If I can help further, I could post a thread on our forums where hundreds of people are browsing every day. I am just asking permission for that.

All the best,
Fabrizio Ferrari
Fabrizio... Please don't hesitate to assist in any way possible.


Thanks to all of you who are forwarding a response to the town of Ashburnham.

#55278 - 10/17/06 11:25 AM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,925
John Citron Offline
3000 Post Club Member
John Citron  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,925
Haverhill, Massachusetts
Terry have you heard any updates from Pat? I was thinking about this last night, and hopefully things went well for her and Michael.

John


Nothing.
#55279 - 10/17/06 01:32 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 37
littlePianoGirl Offline
Full Member
littlePianoGirl  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 37
i have received a reply from Mr. Dennehy and he has pointed out to me that this agreement can be broken IF re-occupation of the building is necessary for a municipal purpose and this can be proven by the town.

i dont see any reason that would ABSOLUTELY have to re-occupy that building again so there is some light here i think.

i realize that even after the ten years, the fredericks might still have to move because the lease might not be re signed, BUT the idea that the whoever wanted to move them out just so that some people can TEMPORARILY move in while another building is being redone is completely absurd. however, the fredericks i am sure have seen the day coming to where the lease as expired and they might get it re-newed, or they might not. but at least they see that date coming and i am sure they have thought about the possibilities and their options at that time. but RIGHT NOW it would be unhonorable (for breaking contract), and also just really low to force them to move when moving the entire collection is so obviously an extrememly difficult task .

anyways, just wanted to let you guys know that these people are reading our emails, and that there is still a chance this will work out and the lease has a chance to go on until it legally expires.


I love playing scales!
#55280 - 10/17/06 01:48 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Piano World Offline
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Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Just because something is "legal" doesn't make it right.


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#55281 - 10/17/06 02:13 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2
Jonathan Dennehy Offline
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Jonathan Dennehy  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2
Ashburnham, MA, USA
Supporters of the Frederick Piano Collection:

My name is Jonathan Dennehy, and I am the Chairman of the Board of Selectmen in Ashburnham, Massachusetts.

I just wanted to drop in and let you know what is going on with the Stevens Memorial Building, which is the home of the Frederick's Collection.

Last night we held a public forum as part of our regular meeting, and invited all interested parties to exchange information and opinions on the proposal presented for the Town to regain possession of the Stevens Memorial Building.

Please note that this proposal was NOT initiated by the Board of Selectmen, but rather by a member of our Town Hall Rennovation Committee. This committee is in charge of studying and implementing a plan to restore our historic Town Hall building that is next door to the Stevens Building.

This proposal was brought forward by Mr. Jim Whidden, the aforementioned member of the Committee. The proposal was in part to address the problem of the temporary relocation of the Town Hall staff during construction.

The meeting that was held last night was not intended to bring definitive action on the proposal, but rather to gain public input on the idea.

There were many members of the public in attendance at our meeting last night, and it seemed to me that the majority of the citizens there were not in favor of relocating the town hall staff into the Stevens Building. The Board of Selectmen voted to send this proposal back to the Town Hall Committee for further study, and we asked them to give us a recommendation.

The Fredericks entered into a ten year lease with the Town six years ago. The lease contained a very liberal provision for the benefit of the town that allowed the town to terminate the lease and regain possession of the building if a municipal purpose were found for the building. This provision is now the focus of that debate.

My personal opinion on this matter is that as a legal matter, although the town could regain possession of the building immediately, that as a matter of morality that action would be a mistake unless that town had no other viable options. The town made a ten year commitment to the Fredericks, and absent an overwhelming countervailing condition that required the town to regain possession that we should honor our commitment for the term of the lease.

The fact of the matter is that there are other cost efficient options for relocating the town hall staff. We need to find out what those options are and employ them.

I do have an appreciation to the cultural and economic value that the Piano museum brings to our community. I have also been made aware of the fact that this collection is somewhat unique not only in America but perhaps throughout the world. I certainly do not profess to know as much about pianos as any of you here, but I can appreciate the historical, cultural and musical value of the pianos and the people the Fredericks attract to play them. I have been in attendance at the Stevens Building for piano concerts and have enjoyed the experience very much.

Politics in small towns can be very interesting, but it is always necessary to separate politics from common sense and what is in the best interest of the community that we serve. I can speak for the entire Board in saying that we all appreciate the value of the collection and will take that into consideration when making decisions that affect the Stevens Building.

Thank you all for your interest in the Fredericks' collection and the Town of Ashburnham!

Jonathan Dennehy


Jonathan M. Dennehy
Chairman, Board of Selectmen
Town of Ashburnham
32 Main Street
Ashburnham, MA 01430
#55282 - 10/17/06 02:26 PM Re: Help Save the Historic Piano Collection! (updated)  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Piano World Offline
Piano World  Offline



Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,188
Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Mr. Dennehy,

Thank you for taking the time to personally respond to our concerns (and welcome to the Piano Forums).

As you can probably tell by the posts, and the emails you've received, our group is passionate and enthusiastic about our friends and their collection of rare pianos.

I have received responses literally from around the world, all in support of the Fredericks'.

I would ask that you share the emails (and this post thread) with the members of the committee.

It might help them to realize (as you seemed to have) the importance of this collection, and the benefit it brings to the town of Ashburnham.

I am hoping they are as open minded as you are.

I would be happy to be able to email our 19,000+ members, and posts for our millions of guests, that the town has decided to do the right thing.

Best Regards,

Frank Baxter
Founder/Owner
Piano World


- Frank B.
Founder / Owner / Host
www.PianoWorld.com
www.PianoSupplies.com
Find Us On:
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ProRecord.info
Twitter.com/PianoWorld
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My Keyboards:
Estonia L-190 w/ ProRecord, Yamaha P-80, Estey 1895 Pump Organ, Harpsichord (kit), Clavichord (kit), Bilhorn Telescope Organ c 1880
-------------------------
It's Fun To Play the Piano ... PLEASE Pass It On!
Invite everyone you know to join our piano forums!


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