composing/arranging for harp

Posted In: Amateur Harpists

  • Member
    katie hall on #158479

    Hello all

    I am not a harp player, but a violinist, however I love the harp’s beautiful sounds and would very much like to arrange a piece for string quartet and harp.

    I have read that when composing for harp it is important to be careful with how chords are voiced however I can’t get my head around working out what to do or what not to do.

    Does anyone have any tips on how to voice chords for harp?

    Member
    patricia-jaeger on #158480

    Katie, two books might help: Harp Scoring by the late Stanley Chaloupka (available from Salvi Harps) and The ABC of Harp Playing by Lawrence/Salzedo, the second half of the book especially. Best if you talk frequently with someone who teaches the harp; take some lessons for at least 6 months to get the feel of those strings, especially your left hand which is turned around completely from the way you have held the neck of the violin.

    Participant
    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #158481

    There are definitely chords that are possible and chords that are not. The orchestra parts by Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky and Debussy are generally fine examples. If you keep in touch with me, I can let you know when my course on composing for harp is finished.

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