2018 Ornament

by Maria on December 1st, 2018

Five years ago, Kelley's Heroes launched a series of Christmas ornaments. The first featured instrument was the valve trombone, the second was the bass drum, and the third was the snare drum. The fourth ornament celebrated our 25th anniversary and featured the sousaphone. The fifth featured instrument was the saxophone.

This year's featured instrument is the clarinet. Our clarinetists are Melody, Kim, Kelly, Karen R., Allie and Jodi.

There were many ancient tubular instruments with reeds. Around 1690, Johann Cristoph Denner and his son, Jacob, made some improvements to a popular woodwind called the chalumeau. They added keys, improved the mouthpiece and added a bell. They called their new instrument the clarinet.
Early clarinets were all made of wood. Later, some instrument manufacturers experimented with making clarinets out of metal, but they just didn't have the same sound. Today, professional clarinets are still made of wood, but other clarinets are frequently made of plastic. Many marchers prefer plastic because they are not affected as much by cold and rainy weather. Plastic clarinets also come in a variety of colors. Karen R. has three plastic clarinets: red for the Christmas parades, green for St. Patrick's Day Parades, and purple for the Lilac Parade.

Clarinets come in many sizes: Eb sopranino, Bb soprano, Eb alto, Bb bass, Eb contra-alto and Bb contra-bass. Most beginners start on the Bb soprano clarinet, so that is the most common, especially for marching. All clarinets need a reed to make a sound by vibrating on the mouthpiece. Most clarinetists use a natural reed, but again, some marchers prefer a plastic reed because it is more durable.

The flat acrylic ornaments are 3" inches in diameter. For a suggested donation of $5, you can start your own collection of Kelley's Heroes ornaments.  If you would like this one or any of the ones from previous years, send us a message by clicking on Contact on the navigation bar at the top of this Web page.


Posted in not categorized    Tagged with Ornament, Melody, Kim, Karen R., Kelly, Allie, Jodi

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