My Erard makes it’s debut!

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    carl-swanson on #74771

    A couple of years ago I posted here about the 1892 Erard I had bought off ebay. It’s a French Erard Gothique, it’s in perfect condition, and everything is original on it. No restoration at all.

    Well, a local harpist here in Boston has fallen in love with it and she plays in the Handel and Haydn period instrument orchestra when they need harp. They had a program last night and were doing a scene from Gluck’s Orfeo and Euridice and there’s a lovely tenor aria accompanied by harp. She asked me if she could use my Erard. So this fantastic 1892 instrument, which was probably never played-and I say that because there were absolutely no signs of wear on it- made it’s debut in Symphony Hall last night. It sounded wonderful, and it’s tonal qualities, so different from a modern harp, came through very clearly.

    While this is not an 18th century instrument(or copy), a true 18th century instrument would have been completely inaudible in that setting. My feeling is that this harp sounded very similar to an 18th century harp, but had more volume. So it was a good compromise.

    By the way, the Handel and Haydn Society in Boston is the oldest orchestra organization in the world! It dates from 1817, and they had actually commissioned Beethoven to write something for them, but he died before he could fulfill the commission.

    steven-todd-miller on #74772

    Carl, PLEASE make a recording with this harp that we can buy! It’s bordering on cruel and inhumane for us non-New Englanders!

    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #74773

    Have you heard the Hungarian recording of the Albrechtsberger Concerto on a Nadermann harp? It sounds pretty good and seems audible. I used a Lyon Healy style 14 once to play

    carl-swanson on #74774

    I’ll ask Barbara-the harpist who played it last night- if she can record something.

    steven-todd-miller on #74775


    carl-swanson on #74776

    Maybe she could put it up on youtube.

    carl-swanson on #74777

    Saul- Simply using a smaller harp, like a style 12 or 14, is not the same as using a period instrument. There are substantial construction differences. The major ones are that the period instrument has an unvenerred soundboard, and also the board is tapered in two directions: from the bottom to the top, and from the center to the edges. Both of these things is going to produce a very different quality of sound from a 20th century instrument.

    kathy-chanik on #74778

    Carl, I tend to like harps with unveneered soundboards.

    Dwyn . on #74779

    “this fantastic 1892 instrument, which was probably never played-and I say that because there were absolutely no signs of wear on it”

    I guess this is

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