Take five – Solo folk harp – excerpts from a 9 year old player

Posted In: How To Play

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    avdhoeven on #211991

    These are some excerpts from the latest piece Davy (9 years old) is working on. This is an arrangement from Take five from Paul Desmond made by his harp teacher for solo folk harp. Especially all the lever changes make it a nice challenge. He really loves to play this piece a lot. There is still some work to do but it becomes better by the day 🙂 This piece he will use for a harp concours beginning next year. I’m curious how he will do it…

    JackieHarpFan on #215054

    Fantastic! Congrats to a talented young man.

    balfour-knight on #215108

    Thanks for inspiring me to try this one on lever harp! I play it better on pedal harp, though, something for little Davy to aspire to in the future. It is always good to hear how he is progressing–thanks for posting these videos of him.
    Best wishes and harp hugs,

    avdhoeven on #215112

    Thanks for the nice reply! We are already saving for a pedal harp some day 🙂 But they are so expensive…

    Last month he played this piece in a harp competition and was put down to earth by the jury afterwards. They told him that his technique was not good enough (which I and his teacher already knew, but he’s a bit stubborn sometimes 🙂 ). After that somehow he realised that his harp future is at stake and succeeded in a single week to improve his technique quite a lot. He know starts to close his hands nicely when playing and using better technique. Even his teacher was surprised he could adapt that quickly. He decided for himself that he maybe wants to do conservatory later so he has a goal now 🙂

    balfour-knight on #215546

    This is great news about Davy! I hoped that he would realize for himself what he needed to do technique-wise, especially closing his fingers into his palms and getting the sense of pulling the strings toward his chest and body, not plucking them outward with his wrist motion, which is counter-productive to producing a good harp sound. Now it seems he is on the right track–bravo!

    Best regards,

    avdhoeven on #215547

    This is something he played two days ago. The difference in his hands is quite clear I think. He’s working hard now 🙂

    Gretchen Cover on #215551

    Someone posted this clip of finger fitness a long time ago. It really helps your finger control. There are other shorter clips on YouTube. This might be useful for Davy.

    balfour-knight on #215642

    Thanks for posting the new video of Davy! Wow, what a difference in his technique after he made up his own mind to “do it the correct way!”
    Gretchen, I enjoyed the finger techniques video, too. I did not know that there are so many ways to work your fingers, ha, ha! Thanks for posting it, too.

    Harp hugs and cheers to you all,

    goatberryfarm2010 on #216828

    You can tell he likes the piece & it’s exciting to see him work on technique after the judges criticized him, instead of sulking.
    He’s going to do well, keeping the Conservatory in his mind, as a goal.

    balfour-knight on #226417

    I was delighted to find again this “old thread” of Davy, and thought it would be nice to see the difference in his technique now that he is on the right track. All of us are looking forward to a post of him playing his new pedal harp, but do let him get used to it first–no hurry!
    Best wishes,

    avdhoeven on #226419

    This is a more recent video. He’s clearly improving. There is still a lot to improve, but he’s really working on it nowadays…

    balfour-knight on #226421

    Very nice–thank you!

    Gretchen Cover on #226427

    I really enjoy seeing/hearing Davy’s progress. He plays so musically – the technique and playing ability will keep getting better over time. He’s a student. The sound quality on the clip is excellent.

    avdhoeven on #226432

    Thanks! He’s determined to go to a special high-school here which is attached to the conservatory. There they will have lessons from teachers from the conservatory and get about 4-5 hours per week music lessons (solvege, music theory etc.). He has to do audition for that in January next year, so he’s working hard to get there… Next week he and his brother will do their first music theory exam 🙂

    Philippa mcauliffe on #226434

    Have you thought maybe about enquiring whether the teacher at the school would take him privately now for some lessons if his current teacher agrees? I am sure she would if that is where he wants to go. If he has become highly motivated to change his technique it would be really helpful for him to start understanding now what she/he wants him to work on to achieve that and how he/she will be teaching that. And potentially good for the audition if they knows he is serious about this and able to adapt!

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