It was a year ago ! On the 11th October 2015, at the Espace Glenmor in Carhaix, more than four hundred people came to celebrate the official launch of the Breton Harp Anthology (Antologiezh Telenn Breizh). Among them, twenty-two contributors to the anthology came (in alphabetical order): Nolwenn Arzel, Anne Auffret, Hoëla Barbedette, Dimitri Boekhoorn, Dominig Bouchaud, Nikolaz Cadoret, Jakez François, Muriel Isambert, Florence Jamain, Soazig Kermabon, Tristan Le Govic, Françoise Le Visage, Mael Lhopiteau, Cristine Mérienne, Pierre Nicolas, Soazig Noblet, Nolwenn Philippe, Anne Postic, Gwenola Roparzh, Clotilde Trouillaud, Quentin Vestur and Marie Wambergue.
The Breton harp anthology, Antologiezh Telenn Breizh, is out. This is a unique collection of three music books dedicated to the Celtic harp featuring the best harpists in Brittany (in alphabetical order): Nolwenn Arzel, Anne Auffret, Hoëla Barbedette, Brigitte Baronnet, Yann Bertrand, Dimitri Boekhoorn, Dominig Bouchaud, Aurore Breger, Nikolaz Cadoret, Grégory Cappoen, Georges Cochevelou, Jakez François, Armelle Gourlaouën, Muriel Isambert, Florence Jamain, Gwenael Kerleo, Soazig Kermabon, Mariannig Larc'hantec, Tristan Le Govic, Anne Le Signor, Françoise Le Visage, Mael Lhopiteau, Cristine Mérienne, Martine Millet, Myrdhin, Pierre Nicolas, Soazig Noblet, Kristen Noguès, Nolwenn Philippe, Anne Postic, Hervé Quefféléant, Pol Quefféléant, Gwenola Roparzh, Alan Stivell, Vinciane Tronson, Clotilde Trouillaud, Quentin Vestur and Marie Wambergue.
"Ur wech e oa, ur wech e vo, ur wech ne oa ket…"1
Once upon a time, a king married a woman on the one condition that he never would ask her her name or where she came from. He accepted and they lived happily together for many years. Every week, the queen would disappear for several hours, and nobody knew when she would come back. Rumours grew within the kingdom. One day, riddled with doubt, the king finally decided to follow her in secret.
The Scottish Harp Anthology is a unique collection in three volumes of traditional tunes in arrangement and new compositions by about twenty Scottish or Scottish based harp players: Cheyenne Brown, Gillian Fleetwood, Maeve Gilchrist, Rachel Hair, Corrina Hewat, Emily Hoile, Màiri MacLeod, Mary Macmaster, Karen Marshalsay, Marie Louise Napier, Rachel Newton, Hannah Phillips, Ailie Robertson, Fiona Rutherford, Patsy Seddon, Wendy Stewart, Fraya Thomsen, Heather Yule and myself, since I was living in the country at that time.
Nothing seems to reconcile Glasgow, the economic capital of Scotland, with Edinburgh, political capital of the country. The two main cities of the Scottish belt stare at, tease and respect each other like porcelain dogs that nothing can bring together. Even the M8 – the motorway between the two cities – increases the differences between them: a logical bypass in Edinburgh, an amputation and stretch of the highway straight into the heart of Glasgow. The tone is set: since the first one prides itself for having an old city classified as World heritage for humanity, the official line for Glasgow will be "the most modern city in Europe" thanks to another – but this one infamous – Robert Bruce1 and his city restructuring plan.
Because your body and mind are going to be under stress, a good preparation is necessary for a recording session as well as for a concert. The first time is always a time of surprises and we discover ourselves more and more all along. Here are ten tips to better anticipate what should be a precious moment in your musical life:
This is the second part of my Master of music dissertation. In this article, I will present the main issues related to the topic of the contemporary repertoire for the Irish harp.
Before getting into the main substance, it is necessary to define some terms. First of all, what is “contemporary music”? Contemporary music is the music composed in the present time, or more broadly in the 20th century, all aesthetics taken together. This matter will lead us to raise musical parameters such as: the melody, the rhythm, the harmony, the tone, the form or the spatialisation.
The dissertation for my Master of music Le Répertoire contemporain de la harpe irlandaise (The Contemporary repertoire for the Irish harp, in French) is available for downloading following the article. Written in 2001-2002, under the supervision of Marie-Claire Mussat, during my studies at the Université de Rennes 2, in Brittany, and University College Cork, in Ireland, this dissertation is based on the contemporary repertoire written and composed for the Irish harp nowadays. The content is divided into two distinct parts. The first part is a methodology work with an annotated bibliography, a questionnaire and a study of contemporary music catalogues. The second part is a development and thoughts on the topic.
Ten Celtic harps performing on stage, a forty-five minutes of music specially composed for them is something quite unusual and noticeable to be presented. Commissioned for the 30th anniversary of the Edinburgh International Harp Festival, this work was revealed as some of the most creative music ever written for the Celtic harp, a crazy bet taken up by Corrina Hewat.
On the page Your music, you are welcome to present three of your favourite Celtic harp albums. Feel free to leave me your comments and your suggestions. If you have some links, don’t hesitate to share them also.
Among the best Celtic harp albums, if it could only be three, I would choose:
1971: Alan Stivell, Renaissance de la harpe celtique
1990: Kristen Noguès, Kernelec
2004: Paul Dooley, Music from the Robert Ap Huw Manuscript
The answer is on the page Your music.