After graduating from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama with a BA in Music Performance, I was immediately invited to join the orchestra of the Scottish Ballet as principal harpist. I enjoyed combining this current role with that of principal harpist with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra for many years before making my home in Worcestershire.
The more personal field of weddings and special events is also a passion. To see faces light up when I play favourite songs is truly inspirational. The harp is a perfect addition to almost any event from cocktail parties and product launches, to wedding ceremonies and private parties, my music will complement your occasion with elegance without being intrusive.
My harp was made by Salvi of Italy and stands 1.8m tall and weighs 41kg. The harp is very valuable and although quite robust and heavy, is delicate too!
A young friend suggested it’s just like a grand piano but stands up and you can see the strings! Although different to the piano or keyboard, it does have some similarities.
All of the 47 strings are equivalent to the white notes of the piano keyboard.
The black notes (sharps and flats) are produced by moving the foot pedals.
There are 7 of these, one for each letter name, so A,B,C,D,E,F and G.
A high level of concentration is needed to read not only the treble and bass staves of music (as a pianist would), but the markings for the pedals also.
This is why we are not so good at holding a conversation while we are playing!
Because of the harp’s intricacies, it’s important to take time to prepare the music in advance.