Katie Targett Adams
Katie Targett Adams - Harpist Katie Targett-Adams from Edinburgh plays a Pilgrim 'Tri-flip' finish clarsach harp. Katie Targett Adams plays regularly in venues such as Edinburgh Castle, and she played at the opening of The Scottish Parliament building in Edinburgh. Katie Targett-Adams has appeared in the USA, notably at The Tartan Day celebrations in New York, where Katie sang a beautiful melodic version of New York, New York supported by the delicate strains of her Celtic Harp. Katie Targett Adams performed last year at the spectacular launch of the latest Harry Potter book "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" at Edinburgh Castle. Katie, 27, has recorded three CDs. Katie Targett Adams music is influenced by traditional Scottish music and pop, to classical and jazz. Katie's performances often feature the songs of Robert Burns, her renditions of modern day pop classics, and even a modern version of Scotland The Brave.Katie target Adams regularly plays her clarsach harp in China, where Katie has appeared at Chinese music festivals..
The history of the clarsach harp
The clarsach or Gaelic harp has been played in the Scottish Highlands and Ireland for over a thousand years. Clarsach’s were part of the Gaelic aristocratic culture, and players of this harp were held in high esteem. By the seventeenth century the Gaelic arts were seen as old-fashioned, and the leading Scottish Highland and Irish families could no longer afford to maintain a clarsach player. The Celtic harp slipped into decline as fashionable society in Scotland and Ireland began to favour keyboard instruments
In the 1970s a significant clarsach revival began when a handful of scholars and musicians began studying the historical sources, and copied down tunes and techniques from some of the last of the old Gaelic harpers.
Instrument makers examined historical harps which survive in museums and private collections in Scotland and Ireland , with a view to building accurate replicas of them. Suddenly Gaelic harps were once again available to those who wanted to rediscover the ancient tradition. The most distinctive feature of the Gaelic harp is that its strings are made of metal.
Modern "Celtic" and orchestral harps use strings made of gut, nylon or carbon fibre, and historically the usual string material for European musical instruments including harps, was gut. However from the earliest times the Irish are said to have used strings of metal on their instruments. Celtic harps can have strings made from brass, steel or phosphor-bronze.
Two of the most famous harps are - The Trinity College Harp which is on display in the Long Room of Trinity College,Dublin,Ireland. This harp is the national symbol of Ireland and is usually dated to the 14 th.and 15 th century..
The Queen Mary Harp - attributed as being 15 th century and is on display in the Museum of Scotland ,Edinburgh
The Clarsach sound has been described “as bell-like, with some characteristics of the guitar and harpsichord”. The Clarsach is now being produced and played worldwide.
Planning is underway for the 27th Edinburgh International Harp Festival in 2008 and the date of the International Harp Festival is 28th.March to 2nd.April 2008.
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