Lá na Cruite, National Harp Day – Saturday 11th November

Join us!

Did you know that there are currently more than 1000 harp players in Ireland? Harp Ireland, Cruit Éireann’s first major initiative is to hold a national harp day to celebrate this wonderful upsurge of interest in the instrument, introducing it to even more players and to new audiences. Therefore, we are asking everybody with any links to the harp to mark it on Saturday November 11.

Harp events will take place at a number of key venues in cities and towns nationwide including Belfast, Dublin, Mayo, Galway, Limerick, Laois, Louth, Meath and Wexford.

National Harp Day is Cruit Éireann’s first major initiative to promote Ireland’s national instrument, encourage more people to learn the harp, attract new audiences and recognise the harp’s unique place in Irish musical and cultural life. Harp events will take place at a number of key venues in cities and towns nationwide including Belfast, Dublin, Mayo, Galway, Limerick, Laois, Louth, Meath and Wexford.

  • Belfast celebrates the 25th anniversary of the renowned Belfast Harp Orchestra
  • Young harpers will gather at The Lexicon in Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin to take part in a fun-filled Harpathon morning event
  • Galway City Museum will showcase three events during the day where Galway harpers and their students play a variety of harps, from the early Irish harp strung with brass to the Irish harp and pedal harp. This will be followed by an evening concert in the Crane Bar
  • Morning audiences in Limerick’s Milk Market will be treated to a feast of harping from Fiana Ní Chonaill and the Lissenhall Harp ensemble to while away their morning coffee, while The Irish World Academy of Music and Dance will host a lunchtime harp concert introduced by Dr Sandra Joyce.
  • Eighteenth century Emo House will welcome the Laois Music Generation Senior Ensemble, who will perform with star Scottish harper, Catriona McKay and Olov Johansson, nyckelharpa
  • Harpers in Wexford will appear at Wexford Arts Centre and in pop-up harp concerts in Gorey throughout the day
  • Harpers from The Meath Harp Academy play at Nobber Library, Post Office and Café and later at the George Eogan Centre with Dearbhail Finnegan and Robin Slater. A little further north, Louth Music Generation harp ensemble led by Deirdre Ní Bhuachalla joins in Drogheda’s Trad session, organised by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, after a performance at the SMEI (Society for Music Education in Ireland) conference in DkIT the previous day
  • Harpers in Mayo, led by harpers Laoise Kelly and Gráinne Hambly, will turn out in force in Westport; they will be joined by Mayo Music Generation Harp Ensemble
  • The Armagh Pipers Club will host a number of concerts, led by harper Eilis Lavelle, with a talk on the early harp from Sylvia Crawford,  and other harp focused events as well as talks from harp makers
  • Dublin’s Powerscourt Town Centre and the Irish Traditional Music Archive will feature performances from DIT Harp ensemble and internationally renowned harpers including Triona Marshall, Michelle Mulcahy, and Anne-Marie O’Farrell while The National Botanic Gardens Teak Room will present harper, Caitríona Rowsome and friends illustrating the life and music of Turlough Carolan. The RIAM will host a pop-up concert featuring some of its up and coming young harpers.
  • Adding to the celebrations, Cairde na Cruite’s student Winter Concert, with special guests Mayo harpers Alannah Thornburgh and Éadaoin Ní Mhaicín, will take place in the wonderful setting of the Pearse Museum, Rathfarnham, Dublin 16 on Sunday, 12 November at 3pm

Download Schedule of Events

 


Leading up to Lá na Cruite, there will be a number of additional free events in Dublin to mark the initiative including:

Lecture/Harp recital by Teresa and Mary Louise O’Donnell ‘George IV, Thomas Moore and the Egans of Dawson Street’.
Wednesday 8 November 1pm, Royal Irish Academy, Dawson Street.


Three talks interspersed with harp music by Mary Louise O’Donnell; each taking place at the National Gallery of Ireland:

‘The harper in Daniel Maclise’s The Marriage of Strongbow and Aoife’
Wednesday 8 November (Friends of the National Gallery) 12pm

‘The Harp that Once: visual and musical representations of the Irish harp in the nineteenth century’
Friday 10 November (Lecture Theatre) 11am

‘The Harp that Once: visual and musical representations of the Irish harp in the nineteenth century’
Saturday 11th November (Lecture Theatre) 2pm


There are lots of different ways to promote the harp in your local area: a concert, a harp session, a harp lecture, harp performances in local schools, articles about local harp activities in local papers, interacting on social media, posting photographs, harp-making workshops, pop up events, harp flash mobs.

If you would like to sign up to organising an event or to be involved in any way,

Organise an Event