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Beginner harper, very late starter!


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#1 dorfmouse

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Posted 02 April 2017 - 06:37

I've popped over here from my usual haunts to say hello. It seems very quiet! I read lots of posts in the weeks before taking the plunge and found them very useful to know what I should think about as a rank beginner.

So this rather lovely object with strings is giving the living room a touch of class, and I had my first lesson yesterday after noodling round with the book over the week since I got (hired) the harp. It's a Camac lever harp, nylon strung. I slightly preferred the sound of the gut strung Korrigan, and also the Isolde with FK strings, however the Melusine was the only one immediately available and I'm very happy. The teacher was very impressed with it's sound.

Had been thinking about taking up harp for a while, not quite sure how the seed got planted. Thought I'd do it when I retire in a couple of years but then impatience set in! Might as well go for it and somehow fit in with flute and piano .... !

Challenges so far :
getting used to the idea of actually placing the fingers on the strings before playing. That feels very strange
some difficulty focussing when playing an octave apart. The top strings are so near my eyes that I see doubled and want to pluck at the air. Is this common? Apart from experimenting with different strengths of reading glasses, is this something that I shall just have to adapt to and maybe learn to play by feel up in the top register?

Hope to hear how you're all getting along. Pling!
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#2 Ligneo Fistula

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Posted 02 April 2017 - 09:07

The very, very best on your wonderful journey!


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#3 dorfmouse

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Posted 02 April 2017 - 14:26

Thank you!

I don't usually go in for naming inanimate objects, but this beauty is definitely a "she" and wants to be called Lulu!

Alongside my grown up book, my teacher has lent me a couple of kiddies' tutors with lots of cuddly kittens, fluffy bunnies and friendly mice all telling me what to do! Actually I prefer them - the print is nice and big with good contrast, and there are lots more little tunes to practice with just 2 fingers before more get added. Nice baby steps!
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#4 chris13

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Posted 03 April 2017 - 12:24

Well done for taking the plunge ! Do people need special lessons to be able to tune them ?


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#5 dorfmouse

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Posted 03 April 2017 - 13:49

No, they tuned it in the shop while I watched. Totally straightforward. Haven't had any problem tuning it, though there are 38 strings to tune! After the car journey home it had gone way out but since then has stayed reasonably in tune with itself over 2-3 day periods. You have a tuning key and can tune by ear, but I think most people use a little electronic tuner, which I already have because of flute.


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#6 dorfmouse

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Posted 11 April 2017 - 09:24

"Thumbs up, fingers down, placement."

Five little words that sound so simple, but .......... !

(Ten days into wandering round this strange new land.)
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