Alannah Thornburgh

What is your name / where are you from?
My name is Alannah Thornburgh and I’m from Swinford, Co. Mayo.

How did you start playing the harp?
I come from a very musical family. My father grew up in Virginia, USA learning Irish music on the fiddle and is also a jazz musician. Himself and my mother met in America and she bought a harp while they were living there, a beautiful 26 string Dusty Strings. When they made the move to Ireland, the harp came too, and stood proudly in our music room for years. I began learning the harp at the age of 11 under the expert tutelage of Grainne Hambly, and I got a harp of my own then just before I turned 13, a beautiful cherry wood Larry Fisher harp.

What does the harp mean to you?
The harp is a very important part of my life. It has allowed me to express myself in ways words simply cannot. The harp truly is a powerful instrument that possesses boundless room for creativity and expression.

What do you like most about Lá na Cruite | Harp Day?
I love the feeling of togetherness and inclusivity that Lá na Cruite brings. It is empowering to be a part of a global community so invested in celebrating and preserving our beloved instrument.