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Playing Your Harp for Others?

Posted by Davy Clark on

Harp Therapy

There is an industry where folks play their harps for the good & healthy benefit of others. Were you aware of this? It is often called many names, such as Therapy Harp, Clinical Harp, Music Therapy, etc. In these situations, a person will play their harp at the bedside of individuals who are sick. Often these services by harpers are performed in a hospice situation, which is formally called, Thanatology. This is where individuals with terminal illnesses or older age, end of life events are being served by our harp playing. 

Personally, I've done both as a trained, first level harp clinician (Clinical Harp). Despite the possibly stressful and less than ideal situation for an audience of our music, it is quite rewarding to be able to give of ourselves through the intentions of our heart to help ailing humanity by the use of our own harps. 

As you make or have finished making your own harp(s), perhaps you might consider playing for others in such serious situations in their lives, once you have become relatively proficient on your instrument? For clinical harp, for instance, you don't need to be an accomplished concert or folk harpist. You only need the love of your harp and have the ability to play the strings & some cords and patterns in a musical way. You don't even need to be accomplished at playing songs (except perhaps for a couple of the most simple where you don't even need to be proficient at two-handed playing). Let me explain.

In my clinical harp training, I learned how to use individual notes, even just one-handed, individual chords, patterns of notes or chords, etc., in an arrangement that we just make up as we go, impromptu, improvised from a library of musical tools we've practiced. And, those aren't even songs. But, they replicate the genre of music we call, "musical massage:" where the tone, resonance, various scales and chord harmonies of the harp coupled with a slow tempo or pace lead the sick or dying individual into a peaceful & relaxed moment in time helping to relieve them of their stress during sickness or end of life transitions. It can be quite healing for them & their families.

Harp Music

In my Favorite Links store page, you will find some notable Therapy or Clinical Harp training organizations you may want to find out from how you might just add meaningful service to others using your own harp. You don't even need a lever or pedal harp. Just a regular folk harp will do, like your Paraguayan style harp. 

While none of these therapy organizations are endorsing my site, I am able to publish their own publicly advertised organizations as a service to my customers & readers. I also highly recommend the organization I trained through, SoundWerk Certification Courses. SoundWerk is very easy to afford, easier to qualify as a clinician and offers readily accessible training for even beginning harpists or on other appropriate instruments. Plus, they have a great on-going harp service community you can be involved in. And, this is all done on-line and live at select times. So, you don't need to travel to get your certificates or to join in regularly with your extended harping family. Tell them Davy sent you.

So, how about it? Are you interested in taking your harp a great step further?

Thanks for your time & consideration.

May your harp become even more meaningful in the service of humanity,

- Davy


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