Favorite books for 22-string lap harp?

Posted In: Teaching the Harp

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    Nadia Botkin on #185431

    I have a student with a 22-string lap harp (from C below middle C up). So far I’ve been picking and choosing pieces from books like Gustavson’s “Magic Road” and some Sylvia Woods Celtic collections, often modifying them to fit her harp. But I’d like to give her some well-written late beginner/early intermediate collections that fit in the range of her harp. She’s interested in just about any kind of repertoire (Celtic/folk, classical, hymns, pop, etc.).

    Perhaps some of you have favorites or suggestions? My experience to this point has been limited to pedal harp and larger (32-string-plus) lever harp.

    Thank you!

    balfour-knight on #185433

    Nadia, I believe that Angi Bemiss, Simply the Harp, in Atlanta, GA, would have some nice material. Check her website, and you could even ask her directly for the note range of her arrangements. Best of luck to you and your students!

    Jerusha Amado on #185434

    Hi Nadia,

    Harper Tasche has written a book of traditional tunes for a 22 string harp or larger entitled, A Lap Harp Standing Tall. Go to http://www.harpcrossing.com for more information.


    Allison Stevick on #185450

    I have a few Suzanne Guldimann books that are lovely. “The Three Ravens” is my favorite of hers.
    The first book I bought to use with my 22-string harp was “Celtic Music for Folk Harp” by Laurie Riley and Leslie McMichael. Most of the tunes can be played on that c-c range, and the others are pretty easily rearranged to fit.

    jennifer-buehler on #185476

    22 Carols for 22 String or 22 Hymns for 22 Strings by Pamela Dorian

    Nadia Botkin on #185494

    Thank you all very much for your suggestions! They have been very helpful.

    kathie-bracy on #185733

    I have a high school student who is in the same boat. She is advanced on three other instruments, but fairly new to her Harpsicle. Good, well-written repertoire for this size harp seems to be very difficult to find. Last week I started her on Bernard Andres’ “La Gimblette”, and she was thrilled. Like you, I hope to find more good repertoire for small harp in books or singles. I will be watching to see what others come up with. Thanks for bringing this up!

    Emily Brecker (Greenberg) on #185746

    Hi, Nadia – I started out playing a 23-string harp and had the same problem in finding music for small harps. If your student is interested in pop music, I arranged 10 Billy Joel songs in two versions: for large lever and pedal harps at an intermediate/advanced level; and the same 10 songs in easier versions for small harps (from the C below middle C and up, as you have described). My thought process was that students could learn the easier versions on small harps and when they were musically ready, they could move up to the harder versions on a larger harp. The book is called BILLY JOEL FOR HARP, Hal Leonard Publishing. The suggestions listed above by others are wide-ranging in styles and are wonderful. Good luck in your search!

    Warm regards,

    Biagio on #185759

    Someone mentioned the collections from Harper Tasche: I appreciate that all the tunes are also on a (separate) CD as well, and for each tune he gives historical information and a blank page of staves for your notes. That thoroughness is so typical of Harper! I just bought A Small Harp Taking it Easy. As the title suggests the tunes are for less advanced players; they are on his Keepsake CD. Arran Boat Song, Beach Spring, Sally Gardens, etc.


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