Guide to Course Levels & Teaching Method

Guide to Course Levels & Teaching Method

Course Levels

  • Beginner: You have no experience of playing the harp.
  • Post-beginner: You took last year’s Beginners’ course, have had relatively few lessons and/or require help with basic technique.
  • Elementary: You can already perform simple tunes, require further help in consolidating basic technique and wish to work slowly and carefully.
  • Elementary/Intermediate: As Elementary but you feel ready to stretch your boundaries.
  • Intermediate: You already have good technique and can work at a moderate pace.
  • Intermediate/Advanced: As Intermediate, but you are ready and willing to work at a faster pace.
  • Advanced: Your technique is good and you wish to work at a good pace to stretch yourself.
  • Mixed Ability: For all levels, except Beginner.

For further advice about course levels please contact us on +44 (0) 131 445 2022

Teaching Method

  • E: teaching will be by ear with written music given out only at the end of the course.
  • E+M: teaching will initially be by ear with written music given out during or at the end of each session.
  • M: teaching will be from written music.
  • M+E: written music will be given at the start of the course. However, teaching will be sympathetic to all levels of skill in reading/assimilating music.
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April 2016
£50.00

Child beginners (5 – 8 years) / Heather Yule

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:00 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Heather Yule

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 - Wednesday 6 April 1 hour session each day Come along and have some fun on the harp. Learn a few easy tunes, how to play chords and discover some exciting musical sounds. A perfect introduction to this versatile instrument. Harps provided. Meet the tutor: Heather Yule We ask participants to register at the information desk on arrival at the Festival and in advance of attending their first course session. Registration opens…

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£72.00

Robert Burns: melodies on the harp / Wendy Stewart

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 pm
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Wendy-Stewart_thumb

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Exploring the beautiful Scots and Gaelic instrumental melodies that Robert Burns used for his songs. With reference to their background and the lyrics, we'll learn some lesser known gems and others mair weel kent! All with complete fingering and simple yet effective accompaniment patterns, played slowly but with panache! Class taught carefully by ear with time built in to get…

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£72.00

Welsh Music / Robin Huw Bowen

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Robin Huw Bowen

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Get to grips with the basics of Welsh harping, how to interpret and arrange melodies in typical traditional Welsh style. The course will focus on simple Welsh dance tunes and their accompaniment, and will look at the typical Welsh harp method of playing ‘theme and variations’ on a basic level. Particularly suitable for students who have never taken Robin’s classes…

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£72.00

Friendly jazz class / Park Stickney

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Park Stickney

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) We’ll take some standard jazz tunes, tear them apart and put them back together again, better than new. We will play around with improvisation, talk about (painless) jazz theory-scales, chords and the like, plus learn some (incredibly useful) jazzy harp techniques like lever slides, string bends, and pyrotechnics. As this is an elementary/intermediate class, the pace will be easy, no…

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£72.00

Take the terror out of technique / Eleanor Johnston

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00m / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Eleanor Johnston

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Specifically for lever harp players, this course is an excellent opportunity to work on the fundamental elements of harp technique. From hand position and posture to articulation and damping, this is a chance to improve your overall sound quality and ultimately increase your confidence in your playing. It also offers a friendly and supportive environment to address any specific technical…

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£72.00

Modal music from Ireland / Anne-Marie O’Farrell

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Anne-Marie O'Farrell

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Mixed up by mixolydian and dumbfounded by dorian? Not any longer! This is a great opportunity to get to know tunes in the different modes which are so integral to folk music from Celtic countries. We’ll also be drawing on the wonderful collection of the James Goodman manuscripts from nineteenth century Ireland. It’s a wealth of beautiful tunes just waiting…

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£72.00

Flavours of Turkish music for harpists / Sirin Pancaroglu

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Sirin-Pancaroglu-640x640

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) The concepts of makam and usul have gone hand in hand in Turkish music for more than a thousand years. While the concept of makam is the main driving force behind melodic organisation, the idea of usul is the system responsible for the rhythmic articulation. Out of the 150 makams currently known in Turkish music, those suitable for use in…

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£72.00

Scottish tunes of the last 30 years / Corrina Hewat

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Corrina-Hewat-(2)-640x640

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) In this class we'll be concentrating on the newer tunes written in the last 30 years in a traditional style. Tunes written by fiddlers, harpers, pipers and pianists in Scotland today. From quirky Shetland tunes through to the wild, fast, unexpected reels being written in the Highlands and the Central Belt and down to the Borders. Decoration will be touched…

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£72.00

Music Alchemy / Vicente La Camera Mariño

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Vicente La Camera Mariño

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Come and explore the hidden messages beyond the notes to find your 'own voice' and 'inner music' through the moods of the melodies, the phrasing and the interpretation of music. The silence in music, inspiration, becoming one with the instrument and the alchemy of the music; through this course you will discover what music is telling you. We will also…

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£72.00

Composing and creativity / Fraya Thomsen

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9.00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Fraya Thomsen

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) There are so many ways to set about composing new music and lots of people have a desire do so but are not exactly sure how to start, what they want to compose or why. This course will be a wonderful environment in which to explore a number of approaches to making new music with the aim of enhancing our…

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£72.00

Build your technique and flexibility (pedal harp) / Sharron Griffiths

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Sharron Griffiths

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Sharron will run a broad course on all aspects to help you become an inspiring pedal harpist drawing from her vast experience as a teacher, soloist, chamber and orchestral musician. The course will include classes on how to improve and strengthen your technique, stylistic awareness, phrasing with clever use of fingering, analysis of different schools of harps and famous repertoire,…

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£72.00

Gaelic through song / Patsy Seddon

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Patsy Seddon

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Initially inspired by the beauty and variety of Gaelic song, Patsy will share her long experience as a learner of Gaelic. She will carefully choose songs that ease learners in e.g. puirt (dance songs), waulking songs and other work songs that feature vocables (e.g. hi ri hoireann o) and repetition. She will also cover simple love songs, lullabies and songs…

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£31.00

Preparing to play, preparing to perform / Irene Watt

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Multi Day event:

9:00am / Saturday 2 – Sunday 3 April

Irene Watt

Weekend course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Sunday 3 April 1 session per day of 1.5 hours This course will focus on how to warm up your hands--and brains!-- before playing or performing, but have fun doing so. We will start with some simple exercises and patterns and develop these, incorporating patterns for both right and left hands, all of which will lead into a fun piece that everyone can play together. We will also look at how to…

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£15.50

Come and try wire-strung clarsach / Bill Taylor

April 2 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am
Bill Taylor

9:00am / Saturday 2 April 1.5 hour session An opportunity to try out the beautifully resonant original harp of the Gaels. While properly played with the fingernails of at least 2mm, this is not necessary for this taster class. The technique is often called playing “in the stopped style”, where finger pads damp certain strings to stop excessive ringing, thus allowing a clear phrase line. Try a simple tune, touch on its history and feel free to ask questions. Instruments provided.…

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£50.00

Child beginners (9 – 14 years) / Heather Yule

April 2 @ 10:10 am - 11:10 am
Multi Day event:

10:10am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Heather Yule

Five day course / 9:00am / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1 hour session each day Come along and have some fun on the harp. Learn a few easy tunes, how to play chords and discover some exciting musical sounds. A perfect introduction to this versatile instrument. Harps provided. Meet the tutor: Heather Yule We ask participants to register at the information desk on arrival at the Festival and in advance of attending their first course session. Registration opens…

Find out more »
£72.00

Adult beginners / Fiona Rutherford

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Fiona-Rutherford-thumbnail

Five day course / 1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Be introduced to this beautiful instrument in a relaxed and friendly setting. We will cover good basic technique and tone production whilst having fun learning some simple melodies and accompaniments from a wide variety of sources. Harps provided. Meet the tutor: Fiona Rutherford After the Festival, come along to our follow-on classes organised by the Edinburgh Branch of The Clarsach…

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£72.00

Funk up your folk! (5-11 years) / Elinor Evans

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Elinor Evans

Five day course / 1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) How to colour your folk music with help from interesting riffs, unusual harmonies and different techniques. Do you enjoy playing folk music but want your performance to sound a little different? The aim of this course is to provide a means of adding texture and colour to folk tunes we all love. The class will look at Scottish traditional tunes…

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£72.00

Simple, effective arranging / Cheyenne Brown

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1.00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Cheyenne Brown

Five day course / 1.00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Arranging your own tunes is possible for everyone. The most amazing thing about arranging for yourself is finding a tune you like, and making the arrangement exactly suit your own level! Do you like a little more funky or a little more traditional… more rhythmic or more gentle? By arranging tunes yourself, you are given the freedom to create in…

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£72.00

Composing tunes in a Scottish style / Fraya Thomsen

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Fraya Thomsen

Five day course / 1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) From marches to jigs, reels and strathspeys, one of the most exciting things about the Scottish instrumental repertoire is variation in rhythms, modes and keys. In this course we will compose new melodies using structure and techniques learnt from traditional tune forms. Each person can decide how closely they wish to replicate other previously loved tune forms, and will be…

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£72.00

The rhythmic soul of the dancing harp / Adriano Sangineto

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Adriano Sangineto

Five day course / 1.00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) During the course participants will learn folk melodies from different Italian regions and tunes for dancing, focusing on expanding rhythmic technique to accompany the dance. Original compositions and tunes from the wider European folk repertoire will be taught in order to develop rhythmic independence of the two hands and a virtuoso right-hand technique to play faster will be introduced. At…

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£72.00

Catriona’s top tunes / Catriona McKay

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

SOLD OUT

Catriona McKay

Five day course / 1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Catriona is delighted to have the opportunity once again to bring some top tunes from her travels to the Festival. Come and learn a few of her latest favourites, including a set from the Kala Jula collaboration concert on the EIHF closing night! As is her style, she will sneak in a few tasty techniques and cheeky tricks to help…

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£72.00

Unfriendly and difficult intermediate-advanced jazz class (actually friendly and fun, but a little faster) / Park Stickney

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Park Stickney

Five day course / 1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Don’t worry! This class will be similar in form to the elementary/intermediate jazz class, just slightly faster-paced. We’ll use standards to explore general jazz concepts, get you up-to-speed on your chords and improv, and fool around with our levers and pedals. Although this class is intended for players at the intermediate/advanced level, no jazz experience is necessary. Jazz enthusiasm, however,…

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£72.00

Love your levers! / Anne-Marie O’Farrell

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Anne-Marie O'Farrell

Five day course / 1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) This is a chance to broaden your repertoire and develop your use of the lever mechanism on the harp. Discover how to approach transcribing music from other instruments, and handling the lovely modulations found in other repertoire. You’ll also learn lever techniques to help you make multiple semitone changes according to the design of your own instrument. Meet the tutor:…

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£72.00

Welsh Music / Robin Huw Bowen

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Robin Huw Bowen

Five day course / 1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Get to grips with the basics of Welsh harping, how to interpret and arrange melodies in typical traditional Welsh style. The course will focus on simple Welsh dance tunes and their accompaniment, and will look at the typical Welsh harp method of playing ‘theme and variations’ on a basic level. Particularly suitable for students who have never taken Robin’s classes…

Find out more »
£72.00

The Cromarty (Cromba) Suite / Corrina Hewat, Mary Macmaster & Patsy Seddon

April 2 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Multi Day event:

1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April

Corrina-Hewat-(2)-640x640

Five day course / 1:00pm / Saturday 2 – Wednesday 6 April 1.5 hour session each day (Monday: 1 hour) Corrina Hewat, Patsy Seddon and Mary Macmaster collaborated on a specially written piece of music to celebrate Cromarty and its unique history and colourful characters, commissioned by the Cromarty Arts Trust. It was written for all levels of player, to be played specifically in a group or adapted for solo player. The suite was scored and published for the Harp…

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