FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Are harps sensitive to outdoor weather conditions?


Harps are made of a variety of manufactured and organic materials, as such, they are particularly sensitive to changes in humidity, temperature, and air pressure. Outdoor services are available, if certain conditions such as shade from direct sun and precipitation are provided.




How many strings does a harp have?


While the number of strings on harps varies with their size, the largest harps, called "concert grand pedal harps" have 47 strings.




How much does a harp weigh?


Again, while the answer varies with the size and model of harp, the largest harps tend to weigh between 60 and 75 pounds.




How do you transport the harp?


I joke and tell people that I minored in furniture moving, because sometimes that's how it feels. The harp has a special cart that is designed just to move harps that I can tilt the harp back on and wheel it around on two wheels. I have a large SUV that I use to transport my harp in. There are two standard ways to put a harp in a vehicle. 1) Flat laying: I tilt the harp forward so the column (the tallest, straightest part of the harp) rests inside the car, I tilt the harp so it is laying flat on it's side, then I pick up the bottom of the harp (the base) and slide it into the back of the car.




What is a travel/cartage fee and will I have to pay it?


A travel fee is just like mileage reimbursement. Generally speaking if I have to travel outside of the greater Denver area with my harp I assess a fee, usually between 25 and 50 USD for the cost of gas and mileage on the car.
A cartage fee is a fee that is added due to the necessity of the increased costs of vehicle ownership etc due to the having a large instrument to haul around. The term comes from the orchestra world in which the people with larger instruments (harp, upright bass, tuba etc) get paid an additional small amount per service because their instruments are more difficult to transport than, say, a flute. I assess a travel/cartage fee if I'm traveling outside the greater Denver area, the price is sliding depending on how far I have to travel.




My venue is requiring my musicians have liability insurance, do you have it?


Yes, I have a business liability policy specifically for my work as a professional freelance musician. A copy of it is available upon request.




How loud is the harp/Do I need to amplify it for my event?


The harp, while louder than most people expect when they try it in person, is quieter than say, a solo violin at full force. This has to do with the nature of the sound wave produced by the instrument. Whether or not the harp needs to be microphoned depends on the size and background noise at your venue, as well as how many people will be in attendance. For small ceremonies or events of 100 or less, it is generally not necessary. The need for amplification will be assessed on a case by case basis.




Do you have a microphone/amplification equipment


At this time, I do not. Amplifying a harp is not difficult for events, and I work with DJ's and sound engineers very often if amplification is needed. The easiest way to mic a harp is to use a boom stand and a regular microphone. I will discuss placement of the microphone and level checks with the sound engineers at the time of the event.




Can you come to my rehearsal for my wedding?


While I am more than happy to provide you with the ease of mind by being at the wedding rehearsal, it is not necessary and not usual for me to attend the wedding rehearsal. It depends on my availibity, and if you would like me to bring the harp, I do charge an extra fee starting at $100.




How much space do I need to allot for the harp and musician?


The footprint of the harp, harpist, bench, and music stand tends to be about 5' x 7'.




Can I have a harpist at my event if it is in an unsual location?


That depends. I have taken my harp in gondolas up the sides of mountains, I've played in grocery stores, hardware stores, bars, churches, parks, gardens, on the 18th hole of a golf course and many other interesting locales. For me, part of the fun of playing harp and adding that to an event is the uniqueness of such events, it inspires my sense of adventure. That said, some things to consider. Harps do not like direct sunlight or precipitation. It is damaging to the instrument to be exposed to extreme temperatures (less than 50 or more than 80) for long periods. Harps require a reasonably flat surface to sit on, I don't want to be worried the whole time that my harp will fall over. I have played for outdoor ceremonies in the winter months in Colorado in the snow. In such cases I keep the harp inside for as long as possible till right before the ceremony starts and bring it in as soon as possible after the ceremony is finished.




Do you offer a military discount?


I offer a 20% discount for active members of the military. Please mention in the notes at the time of booking or inquiry.




Do you have different harps?


No, I only have one harp, its make and model is the Camac Athena Concert Grand Pedal Harp. The same harp that you often see used in professional ensembles and orchestras. https://www.camac-harps.com/en/harps-en/pedal/egerie-straight/





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