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.
The annotated bibliography is constituted of one-hundred-and-thirty-two entries indexed and ranked in order of importance according to the subject: specialised works on the Irish harp, dictionaries, monographs, periodicals, and more general works on contemporary and traditional Irish music. Each entry is accompanied by a few lines which allow you to quickly identify the content.
The main source available to me for my research was a questionnaire I sent to composers. I explain the guidelines and the various points discussed in a chapter of the dissertation. Among the twenty questions, some of them, in a general way, draw our attention to historic, social and cultural aspects of the Irish harp. The other questions, more personal, are also more technical: the instrumental writing for example.
At the end of the first part of the dissertation, the study of contemporary music catalogues highlights the repertoire evolution. The direct contact with Irish composers or composers living in Ireland allowed me to identify one-hundred-and-sixteen contemporary music pieces composed for the Irish harp while, at the same time, only seventy-seven pieces was known at the Contemporary Music Centre catalogue of Dublin. The quantity is therefore insignificant but, most notably, it is of our interest to measure the exponential development of the contemporary musical creation for Irish harp nowadays.
The research results will be presented in a coming article with the publication of the second part of the dissertation.