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Reply To: Practicing duets

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#60228

First, realize the guitar has 2 open E strings and unless the player uses a capo, that easy key of four sharps does not suit harp players so well. There must be good compromise by both partners, to play in keys where both instruments sound well together.
Also, arrange duets so the harp is not always accompanying, or vice versa. Within the composition let each instrument have a chance at the melody, as well as the harmony. As you mentioned, each works alone at first, using agreed tempi; then when coming together it will be much easier to find any rough places still remaining. If recording equipment is available, each player might record his/her own part so the other player could practice at home, along with the recorded duet part. Coming together, make sure measures are numbered . Decide where rubato would be listened for, if appropriate to the piece, and that dynamics enhance the composition. Have eye contact frequently, just as in a trio or quartet. Performing before an audience, the duet needs to sound fresh and alive so allow some give to happen ,but
still keep a tight unit, as if one instrument.