Whimsy and Wonder

John Wickey is guest Music Review Editor for Harp Column.

John Wickey is guest Music Review Editor for Harp Column.

From Great Britain, eminent harpist Skaila Kanga sends us her Minstrel’s Gallery and Minstrel’s Holiday for consideration. Expertly constructed to align with the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) graded exam syllabus for harp*, teachers will find a wealth of interesting material for the beginning harpist in these two collections.

The compositional style is inventive, at times beautiful, and these pieces are sure to engage students with their judicious sprinkling of effects (glissandi, timpanic sounds, enharmonic doublings, stage directions, etc.), colorful moods, and fanciful titles. Teachers who find the lack of fingerings in Minstrel’s Gallery a deterrent may be wooed back by the variety of keys and meters, along with the gradually increased rhythmic and technical complexity.

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