The Hardy family band featuring Paul Hardy

The Hardy family band featuring Paul Hardy

Music is a family affair

  • Jun. 8, 2011 7:00 a.m.

Submitted to The Morning Star

When the Hardys enrolled their young children in music lessons, they decided to learn right along with them.

Cathy  Brown and Clara Hardy, mother and daughter, chose flute. Brown says she wanted to learn so she’d know enough to help Clara practise because she was so young.

At only six, she was the youngest student ever tutored by local instructor Devon Muhlert.

Two years later, brother Nate Hardy got that honour when he followed with guitar at five. His father, Paul Hardy, is learning with him.

Neither parent had much musical background, though Paul did play in his school band. Both wanted their kids to learn.

“I think it is good for the kids to see adults go through the process of learning something new,” said Brown about why she and her husband decided to take lessons.

“Learning an instrument is a great example of how the kids can accomplish anything if they put the time into it.  They see the improvement week to week with practising and learning new pieces.”

If the children struggle with something in school or sports,  Brown reminds them of what they’ve accomplished in music through practise.

Reading sheet music and understanding musical rhythms gives them important life skills, like helping them with addition and fractions, she said.

A busy physician with two younger children as well, Brown has sometimes had to bow out of taking her children to lessons, so big sister Clara has taken on the role, helping Nate find his music and encouraging him when he thinks something is too hard.

The family enjoys much togetherness, skiing, hiking and music.

Younger sister, Camille, watches and “plays” along using Clara’s tuning stick as a flute. Clara and Nate love to perform at home for relatives and guests.

Their next opportunity to perform comes in two concerts featuring Muhlert’s students.

The first, Caetani Garden Capers, is on Sunday at 2 p.m. in the courtyard of Caetani Cultural Centre.

The second concert is at Gallery Vertigo, June 18 at 2 p.m. 

Both concerts are by donation. More information is available by calling Muhlert at 250-542-3228.