Several questions! Bear with me.

Posted In: Amateur Harpists

  • Participant
    Kelly Noonan on #161888

    So I’ve finally bit the bullet and managed to rent a harp from The Harp Connection (an L&H Ogden) and found a local teacher with awesome credentials. My first lesson is going to be January 3rd, following a week’s vacation from work, so I figured that the best thing I could do in the meantime is relearn how to reread music. Does anyone have any suggestions for harp-specific music theory websites?

    Is there anything else I might want to do in the meantime? I’m trying not to form any bad habits, but it’s hard to have the harp just sitting there, looking pretty, without attempting to play it. I’ve plucked out “Hot Cross Buns” and “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” but I’m 100% sure that I’m not doing it right.

    Finally, does anyone else here have an Ogden that they travel with via public transit? I was originally told that I should be able to take it in the subway but after purchasing it, even with the shoulder bag, that seems like it would be a very difficult task. Going up and down stairs with it kind of terrifies me and I have access to a car only occasionally. My teacher said I probably would only need to bring my harp to a few lessons a month, so I’ll probably just get a cab for those days (she teaches only a few miles away). But I’m interested to see if anyone here has tried bringing their harp in the subway.

    Thanks!

    Participant
    Tacye on #161889

    Does the subway have disabled access so you can avoid the stairs?

    Member
    tony-morosco on #161890

    I don’t know of any websites specifically geared toward harp and reading music, but Sylvia Woods Teach Yourself To Play the Folk Harp goes over the basics of music reading specifically in the context of the harp. But really, reading music is reading music. Harp music is written almost identical to piano music so any site that goes over the basics of music reading will apply.

    As for the subway, I had a harp once that was about the size of the Ogden and I used to take in on the NYC Subway from time to time, and I have taken a L&H Folk harp, which is also about the same size and dimensions, on the San Francisco Buses. But I don’t know how big you are. I am an average sized guy and definitely not a 90 lb weakling so I didn’t have too much trouble. But most subway systems have elevator access to the platforms so you should be able to manage. A harp cart would also help.

    I am just wondering why you need to bring your harp at all? When I took lessons I brought my harp once, so my teacher could check it out to make sure it was a decent enough instrument and to show me how to tune it and other details. After that I always took my lessons on her harp and never again was asked to bring my own harp to a lesson.

    My advice if

    Participant
    Kelly Noonan on #161891

    I realized after posting this that I could probably take the elevators (not sure of where the elevators are, but they must exist). I’m also fairly worried about super crowded train cars. But if my lessons are on Saturdays, hopefully it won’t be too bad.

    Participant
    Kelly Noonan on #161892

    Woops, replied to the wrong one.

    I think that part of what made it difficult is that at 5’4, it’s hard for me to get up stairs or maneuver around obstacles because the bottom of the harp bag ends up around my mid-shin. So I can’t lift the bag up and over steep stairs very easily (like when I get on a train) or over seats if I need room to pivot. Mostly what worries me is the pivoting (it reminds of physical comedy where people try to turn with a two-by-four on their shoulder and end up smashing into things). Maybe it’s just something I need to get used to, I’m just super terrified because of how expensive it is and the fact that I’m just renting.

    I’m not really sure if she has a harp or not for me to use. I’ll probably find out way more about this during our first lesson. I do know that she said I definitely wouldn’t need to bring the harp to each and every lesson.

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