Hello everybody! Nice to get here on harpcolumn! I’ve
Louise Trotter has written a book about the subject. Here’s a link where you can buy iy: http://www.folkharp.com/product/first-steps-to-harp-improvisation
Does your institution have a subscription to JSTOR or another source of scholarly articles? Usually this would be through the university library, or perhaps the music library if the school of music has its own library. Austin Caswell at Indiana University wrote on the history of improvisation and I’m sure others did as well, and some general history of improvisation would be useful.
Google Scholar could help if not, though many of its results won’t be full text since many journal publishers require subscriptions. If they don’t have a subscription, Google Scholar could be helpful, though many of the results it gives won’t be available in full text without a separate subscription. Some might be available on a pay-per-article basis from the publisher or from JSTOR.
Elizabeth, since you have a time deadline for your Masters paper , and probably need to include sources to verify your material, and you mention “published or unpublished”, consider this option: In your 15 years of being a harp professional, you surely have been influenced, and taught, by a number of harpists. Contact some of them and tell them you would appreciate it if they would write a few comments on your subject that you could then quote in print. You could even give a short list of questions to get them started. In return you would give their name as the source of this helpful information. Those harp teachers and performers might be glad to share a few hints. Best, of course, are the published texts such as the ones above,which might arrive to you in just a few days by priority mail. Probably other hints from pianists would be found using “Improvising” in a search engine, on the Internet.
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