What makes individual harps so different to pedal? Why are some so stiff and some so easy? How do we adjust our harps? Technicians don’t seem to know anymore.
Well, having heard Zabaleta play on his Obermayer harp with the muffling pedal, I think, twice, it was no prize sound. It was remarkably dry and colorless. He may have liked that for the contrapuntal music he performed, but it left a lot to be desired in Carnegie Hall.
I just ran across this thread and since the subject came up at my Tuesday lesson, I thought I’d give it a bump.
My teacher has two harps, a Salvi and a huge nameless harp that isn’t presently in playing condition. We were talking about the differences in harps, and she mentioned that some of her students found her old harp easier to play (before it was broken) because the pedals were longer than the pedals on the Salvi. Although I hadn’t noticed it before she pointed it out, I did realize that along with the fact that the older harp is HUGE, the pedals are longer.
I have seen some posts regarding difficulties that people with bigger feet have playing the smaller 40-44 string harps because of the size of the pedals, and I was wondering if there are specific differences according to maker- for instance, does the Camac Clio also have a small or short pedal? Do the concert grands have longer or larger pedals?
In my professional life I’ve played many Obermayer and Horngacher harps and I didn’t noticed a remarkable difference between the two mechanics except that the first are older (and often more noisy) than the second.
Recently I decided to afford the expense and I bought a Horngacher Harmonie. The mechanics is definitely heavier than Salvi or L&H but the action is accurate and smooth.
I agree with mr.Swanson about the weight of the instrument, but I have to say that the Horngacher harps have a low point of balance and I feel much more confortable to play a Horngacher than a Salvi (but maybe it is just because I’m a man and I don’t suffer the weight of the instrument).
Right about the pedals I think that the first impression for a player (of corse not for a technician) depends to the tongs (I don’t know if that’s the right technical word) of the pedals at the bottom of the
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