Re: Improper behavior of other harpist

laura-smithburg-byrne on #148261

Oh… but it is about a price, a very nasty price you are being forced to pay for being too good and too threatening to a “queen bee” or a “wanna-be”.
Some people are really good at pretending to be angels in public while they stab their competition in the back in private.
In fact , some harpists are so desperately insecure that they will stop at nothing to undermine and hurt other harpists who have fairly won their success. Some people have to feel that they are “top dog” all the time and cannot tolerate the talent of others who have paid their dues. I have not only lost work from other harpists who have undercut my rate, but I have also had them stalk me, slander me, disrupt my performances, and road rage me and try and cause a wreck on opening night.
Hmm, I thought this kind of harassment behavior was reserved for dirty corrupt politicians and crazy jealous high school ex’s.
It wasn’t long ago when the economy was so bad that annual freelance gigs disappeared and summer weddings were few and far between. Some harpists undercut and low-balled established rates and hurt everyone so they could have a few extra weddings. There will always be harpists who do this, especially those who are still on Daddy’s payroll and don’t have mouths to feed or mortgages to pay or who just do it for “bully sport”.
I had a woman call me not to long ago wanting to hire me and complained about the terrible harpist she had heard at a friends wedding. When she asked her friend how she found the harpist she mentioned that “she was so much cheaper than the other harpists, I thought I was getting a great deal.”
In the end it is a question of quality and if the “lowest price” is what the brides want then that is what they will get.
To have quality music for one of the most important days in your life is worth a few extra dollars.
There will always be the “budget brides” and there will always be the “budget harpists”, and harpists who play dirty to get ahead.
You can’t control the bad behavior of other harpists and their lack of professional ethics, but you can control how you play and do business.
Play beautifully and consistently and good work will find you!