Dr. Jay CraváthThe Lunchtime Speaker Series at the Carnegie Center, 1101 W. Washington St., features a different speaker every month for free to the public.

On Thursday, August 20, Dr. Jay Craváth will present “The Instrument as a Time Capsule.” Craváth is a composer, writer and scholar in the field of music and American Indian studies. He crafts programs from these interests into discussions that include stories, musical performance and dance. His publications include North American Indian Music and Songs for Ancient Days.

For a musician, the song is often recalled most easily with instrument in hand, which conjures history when played in the manner of the day. The rolling gourd rattle before a Mohave Bird song carries the vocal. A banjo’s four-bar intro brings the audience to quiet and readies the dancers. Musical instruments in Arizona are as diverse as the immigrants who traveled through and settled in our state. Craváth, a multi-instrumentalist, discusses and demonstrates how instruments have been an integral part of the musical experience, from assisting with oral memory of pieces, to providing a time capsule opened when the song is played. Among the instruments demonstrated are the balalaika, dulcimer, harp guitar, Hohokam bone flute and mandola.

Light refreshments will be served but attendees should bring their own lunches. Free parking will be available.

For more information, call 602.926.3368 or email sweber@lib.az.us.