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Bidding tops $25,000 for unique memorial instruments


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday January 9th, 2012

‘On-line bidding tops $25,000 for unique memorial instruments with one day before the final hammer falls”

On-line bidding for seven handcrafted guitars commemorating the loss of buildings and lives during the Canterbury earthquakes has reached $25,000 – one day before the hammer will finally fall at a live auction in Christchurch.

All seven have been created using timber from important historical buildings that fell in the Christchurch quakes. Wood was donated by owners of the buildings such as Deans family home (Homebush), the Great Hall at the Christchurch Art Centre (Graduate), Southern Blues Bar (Southern Blues), a Heritage residential home in Chester Street (Chester), Gunyah Lodge (Gunyah) and Ohinetahi homestead built in 1858 in Governors Bay (Ohinetahi).

‘Epicentre” has topped the bidding to date, at more than $10,000.

The guitar, made from a collection of all the woods used in the series along with timber from other structures affected by the quakes, toured with Fly My Pretties last year.

“It was a real honour to take this beautiful guitar on the road and be part of such an inspirational and original idea”, says Pretties co-founder Barnaby Weir.

The seven guitars have also been road tested by kiwi musicians Don McGlashin, Dave Dobbyn, Jason Kerrison and Victoria Gerling-Butcher.

The on-line Trade Me bidding will be combined into a live auction and cocktail evening this Friday (February 24th, 2012) which is expected to be the last time the Heart Strings family of guitars is seen together.

Money raised from the auction will be used to help rebuild the music and arts community in Christchurch.

The Heart Strings Project is the brainchild of the Pickering family. All the guitars were handcrafted by Bruce Pickering using timber collected from many historic buildings, such as The Arts Centre and Homebush, that fell in the September 4th earthquake, by his son Jason.

He’ll be accompanying his wife, Stars in Their Eyes winner, Mandy Pickering, on each of the Heart Strings guitars at the live auction event. They’ll perform their version of ‘When the War is over’, a number of covers including ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’ and ‘Angel’, along with some original songs that will feature on her upcoming album.

“The Heart Strings project is so meaningful to us, especially as Christchurch is my home town and my family and I have experienced our own personal loss, including the loss of our home, but what I love about this project is all about hope and positivity”, Mandy says.

Mandy and Jason’s family home is in the red zone.
The Pickerings have donated an eighth guitar, named Kia Kaha, created from timber from the historical Lyttelton Time Ball station, to the Canterbury Museum. A scroll bearing the names of those who lost their lives has been gently laid to rest inside the guitar.

The Heart Strings guitars will go to the highest bidder, live or on the website, at a fundraising dinner at Armstrong Prestige Mercedes Showroom in Christchurch on 24th February

The Heart Strings collection of guitars will also be celebrated in a live concert by Mandy Pickering and her band at The Wharf on Northcote Pt, Auckland, on March 11

© Scoop Media

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