Cuban musicians get Kansas City assist after musical emergency - KCTV5 News

Cuban musicians get Kansas City assist after musical emergency

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Cuba's National Symphony faced a crisis at the airport headed to Kansas City, but thanks to local musicians coming to the rescue the show went on.

A French horn was crushed in Cuban security the night before the orchestra's debut one-month American tour performance at Helzberg Hall in Kansas City.

If anyone ever questioned Kansas City's place as a first-class arts town, the treatment of this international musical emergency should change their tune.

"They don't make them like they used to," said Mike Corrigan, who knows a little bit about horns.

Corrigan calls himself the "Horn Doctor."

"It's a Hans Hoyer, made in Germany. It is a very high-end instrument," he said.

And his newest patient came all the way from Cuba, severely injured in security at the airport on the way out.

The lead pipe on the horn, an essential component, and the bell, essential element No. 2, were toast.

The call to the "Horn Doctor" was for a replacement rental, but he wanted to go a step further by showing what Kansas Citians can do.

"To be able to replace a lead pipe on a French Horn ... they dropped it off at about noon ... so four or five hours is not something you generally have happen at most repair shops," Corrigan said.

Backstage, Dania Perez cradled her replacement horn, fancier but less familiar, unaware of what Corrigan was bringing.

He presented the fixed horn as a surprise, along with a new hard case for it. The repair work, about $400 worth, was gratis.

That $400 would have been more than twice the average yearly wage in Cuba.

And so the show went on Tuesday night, as a Cuban in Kansas City played a tune from "An American in Paris" with many thanks for reviving her German-made French horn.

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