A pair of canyon wrens (Catherpes mexicanus) makes its home among the old stone buildings on Tumamoc. Joseph Grinnell, the great California naturalist, thought their bright white, breast feathers evolved because they reflect light into the dark crevices from which these wrens take their insect food. But he had no explanation for the echoing beauty of their song.

"Tumamoc Hill"

Eduardo Menozzi Costa

Centennial images

One could hardly ask for a more beautiful symphony. From the different songs of its many species of birds, to the buzz of rattlesnakes, to the chirps of its crickets, to the wind itself stirring its leaves, Tumamoc sings. At noon, ablaze in a hot summer sun, it bullies its animals into the coolest cranny they can find, and the sound of silence reverberates across the Hill. (Apologies to Paul Simon)

Yes, Tumamoc is a natural place to make music. Some of us humans are inspired to join the chorus. Tumamoc: People & Habitats is encouraging them.

We began with the celebration (January, 2012) of the centennial of the State of Arizona. Individual musicians and groups of student musicians were joined by a number of musical groups from the community. We enjoyed a two week concert in honor of Arizona.
On these pages, you can enjoy some of the images from the centennial's musicians. You can even listen to an original composition by Anthony Amstutz, commissioned by our Dean, Joaquin Ruiz, and entitled "Tumamoc Hill."

And that is the story of how we found out that Tumamoc Hill is one spectacular place to listen to music. You can expect more and more opportunities to do just that on the Hill.
Meanwhile, if you are a walker who plays an instrument, why not consider bringing it along one day to play as you walk? Some have even brought small groups of musicians together for a musical stroll. You might even want to organize something in our library. Contact Cynthia Anson if you do.