John McKean of Camden, Maine is our youngest kit builder
ever. He participated in a Hubbard weekend workshop three years ago when he was 11 years
old. His parents had given him a kit as a summer project to be started at the workshop and
completed at home with the professional assistance of a skilled woodworker.
John doesn't claim to have built the entire instrument by himself, but he did a
significant part of the building, his instructor serving as a resource person,
particularly in reading and understanding the plans and instructions.
With appropriate supervision, kit building can be an exciting and rewarding project for
young people, either alone, as in John's case, or as class projects in schools or
extra-curricular projects in churches and other youth organizations.
We rarely preach about harpsichords, but having young people such as John interested in
early music, particularly early keyboard music, excites us. We need many more John McKeans
to preserve our early music heritage.