Spring 2021 News

by Pam Leach

Hello to all of our harpists!

It has been quite a busy start to the year even though we are still only meeting virtually. We have had a successful second harp festival at the beginning of March hosted by out talented tutors, Lucy Nolan and Tamsin Dearnley, culminating in their joint live concert from Derbyshire and France. Both of their sets of workshops have been original and thought provoking, and participants have been able to access recordings of the workshops after the event via our YouTube channel. This last year has certainly given us the motivation to develop our IT skills and reach out to our members as best as we can. Do have a look at our 'what's on' page for an updated list of upcoming workshops and further details of our group.

Flight to Freedom

A collaborative piece by Lucy Nolan and Transpennine Harps. Lucy gave us the original tune that she had composed, based on the flight of geese as a flock, and that their support of each other in the flock was the inspiration for the music. Lucy then invited members to send her a phrase of music that could be incorporated into it. What a response, and Lucy worked her magic and put all of our ideas together, and recorded it with out individual contributions highlighted in the video.

If you get chance, look on the Clarsach Facebook page or Edinburgh International Harp Festival (EIHF) website for the collaboration (scroll down to the middle of the page) of Rory Dall's Port which featured representatives from all the Clarsach Branches - huge thanks to Annie Jones for representing TPH so ably! You can also download the score and play along with the video.

Transpennine Harps - Classical Music Group

We have a new sub-group for those interested in exploring classical music for the harp. Jean Blackburn organises the meetings, and Lucy leads us. We have enjoyed music by Mozart along with Lucy's knowledge of the background behind the composition both structurally and historically. We are also looking at Satie's Trois Gymnopedies.

Please contact Jean on jeannie69b@gmail.com if you would like to join us.

Moving Forwards

I am so grateful that we have been able to meet virtually via Zoom, and have still moved ahead in our playing. Yet I would so love to be playing my harp along with another harpist in the same room, so that you can really hear the depth of the base strings and feel the vibration of the music, rather than listening via my laptop. Now we have finer weather maybe harpists could meet up in someone's garden? Even if just for half an hour of playing. If you would like to know if there is a harpist local to you in our group, please just email us and we can inform you. (if anyone objects to us sharing your email address in this context please let us know). The advantage of meeting up via Zoom has meant that our membership has broadened geographically, with members from up and down the country, who would not normally consider driving to West Yorkshire to meet up with a harp group. So, a blended group consisting of sessions by zoom with the occasional physical meet up is likely to be the best way forwards for us as a group.