It’s exciting times for everybody involved with the harp in Ireland; numbers of harp players are increasing year on year, the demand for Irish-made harps is growing, and the harp features prominently at festivals, in concerts, in workshops and at sessions all over the country.
The harp is our national symbol and we are proud that it holds a special place in people’s hearts. Cruit Éireann, Harp Ireland’s mission aims to raise awareness of this more than one thousand-year-old harp tradition, share its repertoire and make sure that we celebrate it at every opportunity.
Therefore, our Harp Day initiative sets out to promote the harp, make it more accessible, encourage more people to learn it, and attract new audiences to experience its music. It is an ideal chance for it to be played and heard in all corners of Ireland, and farther afield.
Lá na Cruite | Harp Day 2022
Saturday 15th October 2022
This year Lá na Cruite │ Harp Day took place on Saturday 15th October 2022 and harpers, teachers and music-lovers took part in 63 live events both in Ireland and abroad. 336 Harpers performed as part of our online programme on Harp Day. We broadcast 140 Harpers’ Call videos with 306 performers on our YouTube and Facebook channels through the day.
63 individual live events took place in Ireland and abroad, many of which were free.
Our theme for Lá na Cruite | Harp Day 2022 was HARPS TOGETHER. With so much division in the world, we are shone a spotlight on music’s ability to unite us. The harp was at the heart of a celebration bringing communities of people together, embracing musical and cultural differences and showcasing the glorious diversity of Ireland today.
We also celebrated the 230th anniversary of the 1792 Belfast Harpers’ Assembly in 2022, and Lá na Cruite | Harp Day was the perfect opportunity for harpers to acknowledge the invaluable legacy left by Edward Bunting and the Assembly on the Irish harping tradition.
We also introduced our amazing ‘Harpers Worldwide’ Interactive Map where you can view videos from harpers all around the world who have sent us videos for Harp Day. Just click on a pin any where on the world map to view their videos. You can view it here.
Lá na Cruite | Harp Day 2022
See full details of all the events on Harp Day 2022 here.
Lá na Cruite | Harp Day 2021
Lá na Cruite, Harp Day 2021 took place on Saturday 16th October where harpers all over the world celebrated Ireland’s 1,000-year-old harping tradition. Harp Day 2021 combined both live events and virtual broadcasts on Facebook and on our YouTube channel.
This year’s theme was HARPS ALIVE; it was our response to a renewed sense of awareness of the beauty of the world around us over the past 18 months, when we paused to listen and to look around us with a new perspective; hearing bird song, getting out and about, walking on our beautiful hills and coastal areas, and relating to nature in a different way.
We called on harpers to reconnect with nature, let their harp music reflect the beauty in their favourite outdoor spaces: on hills, beside lakes, on the coast, in forests or even in their own back gardens.
Harpers’ Call featured over 6 hours of harpers who recorded videos of themselves playing a tune in their favourite outdoor setting. We received 150 videos of all standards from every corner of the world. Watch our Harpers Call videos here.
See all our Harp Day 2021 highlights below or watch the videos on our YouTube page at www.youtube.com/c/harpireland
Lá na Cruite | Harp Day 2020
Lá na Cruite | Harp Day 2020 took place virtually this year on Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th October. Our online event broadcast over 29 hours of concerts, workshops, talks and a variety of imaginative events that celebrated the harp and harpers all around the world. All these wonderful contributions are available to watch on our YouTube channel and on our Facebook page. Every year this event continues to grow as does the number of performers and harp enthusiasts who contributed from near and far to two wonderful days of harping.
National Harp Day 2019
National Harp Day 2019 took place on 19th October offering concerts, pop-up sessions, workshops, talks and a variety of imaginative events that celebrated the harp and harpers all around Ireland. The event is continuing to grow as is the number of performers and harp enthusiasts who came from near and far to enjoy the fruits of a wonderful day of music-making.
National Harp Day 2018
We had a marvellous response from harpers all over Ireland for National Harp Day 2018. Audiences from Donegal to Dingle, from Belfast to Bandon were treated to the wonderful sound of harp-playing at concerts, sessions, harpathons, pop-up sessions, talks and demonstrations of harp making. Harping friends in the Isle of Man, Greece, the USA, and as far away as New Zealand joined us to acknowledge our national instrument.