The Harp at an Event
Do you play outdoor events?
There certainly is something magical about having a harp at an outdoor event! I am happy to play outdoor events, between the months of April and October in Utah. The harp needs to be placed in the shade, and on a hard, flat surface. This is to protect the underneath of the instrument and to keep it from tipping over, as harps are prone to do. Additionally, the harp is sensitive to climate - air that is too hot or too cold, or even too dry or too humid, can cause strings to break and even damage the structure of the instrument. I will not play outdoors if the temperature is under 50 degrees or over 90 degrees. If the weather is inclement you will need to provide an alternate location. These stipulations are for the protection of the expensive, fragile instrument.
Does the harp require amplification?
For indoor locations, the harp is usually loud enough without amplification, depending on the size of the room. However, I do provide my own sound system, free of charge! When amplification is desired, you will need to provide an extension cord and an area near enough to an outlet where I will set up my harp and system.
Where should the harp be set up?
The harp needs about 4 by 4 feet of clear space to fit the harp, me, and a music stand. As mentioned earlier, a flat surface needs to be provided. To keep the strings in tune and prevent potential damage, placement out of the sun and away from air vents, open doors or windows, and fireplaces is essential.
Do we need to provide anything for your setup?
I provide my own seating, music stand, and sound setup. As mentioned previously, if the location is outdoors you will need to provide a flat surface in the shade, and if amplification is desired then you will need to provide an extension cord and an outlet.
Do you need help moving your harp?
I always move my harp myself, but if you have some extra people on hand to help carry my other equipment, that is always welcome and appreciated. If no one is available, then don't sweat it. If there are stairs involved at the location of the event that I have to get up, though, then I will need a helping hand or two.
How far will you travel for an event?
I'm based in the Vineyard/Orem area and can travel for free to most areas within Utah County, but will charge a travel fee in excess of 25 miles from Orem.
What kind of music do you play?
I have a broad repertoire, including classical, pop, contemporary, Celtic, Latin, movie music, and more. For weddings I have a selection of traditional wedding pieces for those who want that at their ceremonies. What I choose to play depends on the event and what my client would prefer (ie. classical only, Celtic only, etc). If you have a preference on a type of music you want for your event, please let me know and we can curate a playlist that will fit your style!
Will you take song requests for my event?
I would be happy to take requests for songs to learn ahead of time, as long as there is enough notice before the event (if I don't already have the song in my repertoire). There is a $50 fee per special request outside my repertoire.
What will you wear to an event?
The harp and harpist are as much a visual element of an event as an auditory one, so if you have a dress code, style, theme, or color scheme you would like me to fit into, I am happy to try and match! Otherwise, I will wear all black.
What goes into pricing?
Pricing for freelance live musicians must take multiple factors into account: cost of materials, insurance, client communication, consultations, bookkeeping, creating and practicing the setlist, travel time and cost, and more - and of course, the service the day-of!
How do I book you for an event?
Get in touch here! After confirming availability and getting the general information for your event, I will be able to provide the exact rate and send you my contract. After you fill out the contract you'll return a copy to me along with the $100 retainer I require to reserve your date. (Booking process may differ slightly if hiring is done through a third party website.)
No events are booked without the signed contract and retainer.
How much is the deposit?
I require a $100 deposit to reserve your date. This retainer is nonrefundable.
When is the balance due?
The remaining balance is due no later than 30 days before the event date.
Are there any additional fees?
There may be fees incurred for travel or song requests (see info under the above "The Harp at an Event")
For more helpful information about hiring an event musician, check out these links!
Do I need a harp of my own to start lessons?
Yes, you will need a harp for practicing outside of lessons. If you don't want to buy one right away, I can direct you to several different rental programs offered by harp maker companies.
What kind of harp should I use?
There are two main categories of harp: lever or pedal. Lever harps include Celtic harps, lap harps, and folk harps, and are categorized as lever harps because of the levers above the strings that you can use to change the string's pitch. Pedal harps are larger and have more strings than lever harps, and are called pedal harps because of the complex foot pedal mechanism that enables quicker accidentals and key changes.
Typically, beginners start on a lever harp because they tend to be smaller, less complex, and quite a bit less expensive than pedal harps.
How often do I need to take lessons?
For beginning harpists, especially children, a lesson every week is key. If you are an adult taking lessons and your schedule permits less time, such as every other week, that can be accommodated.
How much do I need to practice?
To make consistent progress, I recommend practicing at least 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. It is advisable to practice at least 30 minutes every day to make consistent progress. For young children, however, practice time may vary. Sometimes it's a good idea to break up children's practice into manageable chunks to accommodate their attention spans, such as dividing 30 minutes into two 15 minute sessions during the day.
What is the best age to start learning the harp?
There are many sizes of harps, so that makes the harp accessible for really anyone of any age to learn. You're never too old to start, either! I do recommend that the earliest to start children is age 6. Prior musical knowledge is advantageous to learning the harp (but not required!), especially piano training, because harp music is written in similar notation as piano.