A Breton Finn, another one Swedish. A Czech Breton, another one Swedish. A Swedish American, a Japanese American, an English Icelander, a Karelian Finn, a Belgian Swede, etc. Is the Nordic Harp Meeting the rendez-vous of travellers? One can find there those who are looking for something, and having found it one day want to share their discovery. Many things here seem to come from the past – the origins of instruments such as harp, lyre, hummel, langspil, and all the instruments which all of a sudden gave an authentic aspect in a present too rushed – but, in Järna, we are in the present.
Lise Enochsson: Two weeks ago at the Nordic Harp Meeting a group gathered for a workshop on "physiotherapy for harpists", a pretty ambitious workshop title from the arrangers, but which was actually a condensed and hands-on (feet-on!) version of the plan for this article series.
In the previous article (Instrumental technique 1: breathe), we've become aware of our breathing and explored ways in which we can free it up. Next, we can become more aware of our habitual posture and try some small adjustments. If you really get into feeling how you normally carry yourself, you may find some surprising tendencies.
Last week-end, during the Nordic Harp Meeting in Järna, Andy Lowings gave a lecture on the Golden Lyre of Ur. This article tells this amazing story of the reconstruction of an instrument a few thousands years old. It was published last October in the online magazine Harpes Mag. We would like to thank Didier Saimpaul for letting us publish it here and Andy for generously sharing this adventure.
Just over a month after the Kristianstad Öresund HarpHelg (read the post about it), Sweden is again the stage of another harp event. This year, the Nordic Harp Meeting will be held from the 31st October to the 3rd of November in Järna. Erik Ask-Upmark, international harp player and organiser of the coming edition, and Josef Berger, harp player and founder of the Meeting, tell us about what is one of the most original events dedicated to the harp:
The mill blades of the Netherlands turn again with a fresh wind. Regarding harp, the country has been the birthplace of many audacious projects: more than thirty years ago, the World Harp Congress was founded as an outgrowth of the Harpweken (Harp Week) on the initiative of the Dutch harpist Phia Berghout; created in 2007 by the Dutch harp players Sabine Meijers and Brenda Dor-Groot, the International Jazz Harp Foundation is based in the Netherlands. More recently, the Nederlandse Harpvereniging (Dutch Harp Association) and the Nederlandse Folk Harp Vereniging (Dutch Folk Harp Association) have launched a common event: Open Harp Dag. Centered on an international pedal harp competition held every two years, the Dutch Harp Festival also promotes other music played on different harps; workshops are scheduled all over the country with local teachers as well as musicians coming from abroad. (more…)