Harp Info Banner

Home | Harper | Links


Laurel Playing a Tea Often, when I play harp for afternoon tea at an historic home here in Fort Collins, I will give a small talk about the harp. It is always surprising to people to learn that it is never too late in life to take up harp playing.

The harplist is an international group of harpers and harpists that has over 700 members of all ages...even a woman of 70 who just took up the harp a few years ago! And the Sylvia Woods Harp Center in California teaches lessons and Sylvia said that the average age of her students is 40....so I would encourage anyone who is interested in harp playing to do what I did:

  1. Spend a few weeks searching online for information about harps, harpers and harpists.
  1. Subscribe to the Harplist at Yahoo and start reading the posts and get a feel for what the community is like  and some of the interests and concerns of harpers and harpists worldwide.
  1. Find a music store in your area that rents harps...or search online for the place nearest you that rents and will ship a harp. You will be surprised at how many there are out there.
  1. Think about the kind of music you want to play and see if you can find any harp music at your local music store.
  1. Don't let anyone tell you that you are too old, too short, too tone deaf, too ANYTHING to learn a musical instrument. Harp is a very delightful instrument to learn. Although mastery is difficult, it is easy to learn to play if you have the desire and interest.
Harpers at Rocky Mountain Fiddle Camp
  1. Find a teacher in your area. It is important to start with good classical technique. Homegrown hand position has stopped many good players in their tracks and held up their growth as a musician and harper. There are some good videos for teaching hand position if you can't find a teacher. It is worth it to take the time to learn *proper* technique! It will feel VERY odd at first, but will be Well worth the extra time spent to make it natural.
  1. If there are harpers in your area, try to join a harp circle, where local harpers get together and play together and learn together. These are usually very amiable groups with very generous, helpful people.
Harpers and harpists are, by and large, a very kind and accepting group of people within the music community. Don't be intimidated. We all started out as beginners at some point. What matters is that you START and keep going. You will never be sorry!!

Celtic Knotwork Divider

Home | Harper | Links