shady or bright room?

Posted In: How To Play

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    wendyharpwendy on #215894

    Hi everyone, May I please have your advice on two options to keep my new (old) harp at home; one room is bright but sits above a crawl space; the other room is dark all the time with wood paneling. Both rooms have windows but neither room gets direct sunlight, not even the bright room.
    I’m a beginner so I am less concerned about the room for sound but more asking about the better choice for preserving the strings, and instrument longevity.
    Does a bright vs dark room have more humidity in the summer months?

    charles-nix on #215922

    Why don’t you put the harp where you will be encouraged to go to practice? Or where you will face fewer distractions?

    Bright and dark, in themselves, have no relation on humidity. Definitely get a decent humidity meter, though. I don’t know where you are, but for people in most of the US, with air conditioning, high humidity in the summer is not a big problem. What is damaging for most of us is low humidity in the winter.

    And, be concerned about the sound–you have to hear the nuances of what you are playing. How can you correct technique if you can’t hear the difference because of the room?

    Charles Nix

    Elizabeth Volpé Bligh on #216619

    Though this has nothing to do with the care of the harp, you should have enough brightness to be able to see your music and strings clearly. Otherwise, you might be craning your neck or squinting, neither of which are good for you. You may also make mistakes because misreading a note due to inadequate light. Once you’ve learned your music, then it’s a good idea to see if you can still play it with the lights turned lower.

    Loonatik on #218893

    It doesn’t matters where the harp stays, bright or dark.
    Find out what helps you play best.

    If it’s too bright, and the brightness blends away the strings, such that you keep catching the wrong notes, then it’s not a good place, if it’s too dark, and you keep searching for the right strings, then it’s not a good place either. If it’s wooden room with parallel lines of the walls/floor to the harp strings, you might find too little contrast when the background lines blend into your harp strings, then that place is just not helpful. (now thinking about it, that’s probably why some harpists place their harps on carpets/mats…?)

    Harps are quite robust, and if they do not last, it’s probably due to the make, or if it has been maltreated, e.g. standing in the rain, or spilled coffee on it etc. Strings are meant to be played on and it is normal that they do break from time to time.

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