Everything you need to know about booking a Harpist
When thinking about music for your special day, it’s important to choose what feels right for you. There are different points throughout the day at which you could have live music including the ceremony, drink's reception, wedding breakfast and evening party. There are so many acts to choose from, how do you know what’s right for you? Here are a few things to consider: space, repertoire, budget and volume.
The harp can be the perfect addition to any wedding ceremony, drink's reception or wedding breakfast. Its rich sound creates a beautiful ambience, immediately setting the scene. I use an electro-acoustic harp with an amp, it looks and sounds the same as an acoustic harp, but the volume is louder. My amp is battery powered so I can be placed anywhere and can be heard over 150 guests. When enquiring, be sure to tell musicians them how many guests you are expecting so they can make suitable arrangements regarding amplification.
The harp requires a space of approximately 1.5 metres by 1.5 metres, think about where you would like it to be placed and let the venue know to allow space during their set up. If your wedding is going to be outdoors, when enquiring, make sure the harpist is happy to play outside. I bring a mat and parasol with me to protect my instrument and equipment so extra space will be needed to allow for the parasol. Rain and sun can seriously damage equipment and not all musicians will have their own provisions so it's important to check what they need before booking.
When choosing your harpist, the most important consideration is repertoire. Take a look at their videos and recordings before booking to get a clear idea of what they sound like. Most harpists are happy to arrange a song for your special day so if you have something in mind, ask! Not all songs work on the harp so if you’re worried, ask for a demo to be sent.
The last consideration is accessibility. Concert pedal harps are over 6ft tall, weigh over 6st, and need a trolley to be moved around. Most harpists are comfortable moving their harp around a venue and can manage a few steps, however, not all venues are easily accessible and the harpist may require assistance. If you would like your harpist to be on the first floor or above, and there isn't a lift, or there's a tight staircase, make sure to let them know when enquiring.
Having a harpist at your wedding can create an instantly romantic atmosphere, especially if they have arranged your favourite song just for you. I hope this helps when booking for your special day, if you have any other questions, just ask!
Venue: Rise Hall
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