Frequently Asked Questions
"Do I need to provide anything for you?"
Nope! I'll bring my harp, bench, music stand, and music. However, I will need to be there thirty (30) minutes in advance to tune and set up.
"Do you need amplification?"
Short answer: I do have battery-powered amplification available upon request.
Long answer: The acoustic, concert pedal harp is roughly comparable to the piano in volume, though a little quieter. For ceremonies/services where there will be silence during musical portions, the harp can be heard loud and clear!
For social gatherings where people would be conversing (cocktails, dinners, parties, etc) larger than 75 people, amplification is recommended for the ideal experience. While a standard microphone works, I do have amplification equipment specifically designed for the harp!
It's available upon request as an add-on for a very low fee.
"Do you take music requests?"
If you give me at least fifteen days' advance notice, I'll probably be able to work something out! However, with less than that, I'll have to take it on a case-by-case basis.
"I don't know anything about harp music!"
No worries! I do!
The harp repertoire is quite vast and has a LOT of good music! If you want instrumental music but are at a loss for what to select, please ask me! While the harp CAN play just about anything, I can also recommend some wonderful pieces that were composed and specifically intended to showcase the harp!
Whether you're looking for a genre or a specific style of piece - or even a musical piece that "sounds like ___, but isn't!" - consider me your talking library!
"Will you need to take any breaks?"
Due to the physically demanding nature of harp-playing, I will need to rest for five minutes per fifty-five minutes of constant performance, with a thirty-minute rest after four hours. Requests for blocks of more than four hours of playing will be taken on a case-by-case basis.
"How do you figure out how much to charge?"
Good question! There are a couple factors:
Average Pricing: I primarily take into account the prices of my colleagues to make sure that I am neither drastically over-pricing or under-pricing them with the average event. So, I establish a reasonable ball-park price.
Harp & tool/vehicle upkeep: I want to keep my instrument in peak performance quality for your event! This means yearly regulations and string replacements, repairs for regular wear-and-tear, and other structural, lifespan-related considerations of the instrument. I also need to take into consideration transportation/cartage costs, gas/travel, and equipment maintenance such my amplification equipment.
Background work: A lot goes into providing a stellar performance at your event! This of course includes prompt communication as you plan your event, 3-4 hours of practicing per day to maintain my vast repertoire, time spent traveling and setting up for your event, and other special requests!
Quality & Length of time: When you book me to play for your event, you are hiring a Master of Music. You are receiving not only consistent quality and playing endurance, but the ability to have your cherished song brought to life on the harp, adaptability to the circumstances, and, of course, all the skill of having played for over 18 years and studying at some of the best music schools in the nation.
My quotes account for all of this. I do my best to give you a fair and - above all - consistent price while being able to maintain the level of professional quality I offer.
"Can you play outside? What sort of set-up conditions do you need to play?"
I've heard it said, "If you're comfortable, the harp's also comfortable," and that's fairly accurate.
The harp needs to be kept between between 60°F and 85°F, and kept away from direct sources of temperature (such as a heater or drafty entryway), precipitation, and direct sunlight. If playing outdoors, the harp must be protected from outdoor elements by overhead shade and be on a solid, engineered surface. If inclement weather threatens, I'll need to stop playing and move to a safe location for the harp. Along those lines, I ask that whenever I play, I'm provided with a well-lit, safe venue (wheelchair accessible), with a clean solid level surface on which to perform of at least 4'x4.
My concert harp is gilded in fragile 23+ karat gold leaf. Underneath this beautiful exterior is a primarily wooden instrument which will be damaged in extreme temperatures, with over 3,000 internal metal parts (which can wear and need to be replaced), and is under a huge amount of tension (2,000 lbs!)!
I try to make sure that it enjoys as long a lifespan as possible by not subjecting it to conditions outside the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Other than that, we're good to go!