Sunday, 18 March 2018

Leaving Indiegogo

Hi everyone.

Really shocked to be making this post. After our article came out, we received a further £60 in donations through Indiegogo. This is because we chose 'in demand', which keeps the campaign open so long as we receive at least one donation within a six-month period.

We were overjoyed that more people were interested in supporting the project and had donated their hard-earned money to back us.

Then we got an e-mail from Indiegogo explaining the financial breakdown of our donations. Out of £60, we would only receive £29 - less than 50% of the money raised:

We couldn't believe it when we saw it. They also took around £500 from the original £6,000 we raised, but we covered that ourselves because we didn't want our supporters' money going into the black hole of Indiegogo and bank fees.

We've just written to them urgently requesting the closure of the in demand option, and they responded with a highly inapropriate automated message:

Thank you for contacting Indiegogo's Customer Happiness team! 

This is a family blog, so we won't repeat what went through our heads.

We haven't got a good word to say about our Indiegogo experience and would ask anyone else who wishes to donate in the future to do so directly through PayPal, as the fees are minimal in comparison and the money comes direct to us without any third party skimming.  Sorry for this disappointing news. We will make up the difference ourselves as it's absolutely not fair to the people who have supported us.

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Actual IGIHE Interview

Our IGIHE interview came out today, so our Kinyarwanda followers can read the whole thing here.

It's a big deal as IGIHE are a massive news outlet in Rwanda. Our neighbour just texted to say 'well done!' having seen the article.

It was an extremely hot day, just before a major downpour. That's why we also title this piece: Mzungu Having a Meltdown. It's the rainy season at the moment, so basically this:

Désiré is the master of cool composure in front of a camera. We thought this was going to be a written interview at first, then they turned up with a camera and lamps. We're extremely grateful they cut out Marion's 'uuuh, umm...' which formed 90% of the interview, and managed to salvage a few decent soundbites. It's agreed that Désiré should do the talking from now on (he speaks Kinyarwanda, English, French, Lingala and possibly Klingon).

We're throwing out an appeal to our Kinya followers for an English transcript. Keep checking this post. If we get it, we'll add a link.

We're very grateful to IGIHE for the support.

No pressure then, guess we'd better get on with building that piano...

Saturday, 10 March 2018

IGIHE Interview

We had a fun day yesterday with Emmanuel from IGIHE, a Kinyarwanda-language news outlet here in Rwanda. They came to interview Désiré and Marion about the piano-building project. It was an extremely hot day, so we sweated our way through it and showed off our piano in progress alongside the Lirika. 

Lirika's original frame is looking a bit battered and bruised now, but we're ploughing forward. Désiré is currently making the fret boards before mounting the frame onto the new piano and putting in the tuning pins, ready for stringing. 

Fret Boards on Original Lirika
These help to keep the strings in place.

We'll post a link once the IGIHE interview goes live, and try to get an English transcript alongside it.

Thursday, 8 March 2018

Ryan Arcand

A sad farewell to Ryan Arcand, a homeless Canadian man who had a soul-deep affinity with the piano. 

Monday, 5 March 2018


Alex, the lovely journalist who came to see our project last year, has written a great article about it.

Hoping to make an emotional announcement next week. Stay tuned.