Musical Storytelling in the National Parks
Dr. Nicole Molumby
I combined my passion and love for music and giving astronomy programs and create an astronomy ranger program that utilizes live clarinet music. I researched why the night sky interests people, how ecomusicology can enhance visitor experiences, and how to combine these subjects into a ranger program. I collected topics of interest from visitors who attended previous presentations of my astronomy programs at Grand Canyon National Park. I also analyzed secondary sources materials on the use of ecomusicology in concert, museum, and cultural contexts. Finally, I performed a social media survey analysis on the question “Why do you look up at the night sky?” With this research, I designed a ranger program about the seasonal night sky told through stories and music. My ranger program will consist of me sharing the folklore of the stars, talking about how we can travel back in time by looking into space, and sharing how the sight of stars can make us dream. I will also be playing the music of Jenni Brandon titled “Starry Night for Bb-Clarinet” which consists of three movements, titled “The Starlight Night”, “Bright Star!”, and “The Sight of Stars”. Each of these movements directly relates to the three topics in my program and I will play this music to help visitors create personal connections to these themes about the night sky.
Stallings, Kensie and Molumby, Nicole, "Musical Storytelling in the National Parks" (2022). 2022 Undergraduate Research Showcase. 93.