A harp is a beautiful instrument to have as part of any wedding ceremony or cocktail hour. When a guest walks into a wedding ceremony and there is a harpist playing, they are often struck by the beautiful atmosphere of elegance, uniqueness and regality that has been created. A harpist elevates the ambiance and creates a beautiful environment for a wedding. It is also a great instrument for creating an  intimate experience for your wedding guests. A harpist in the state of Kentucky is truly a rare gem. For that reason, it could be something you have never even thought about having as part of your special day.

Musical Versatility & Flexibility
Any experienced harpist has the ability to play the timeless classical requests that couples have come to know and love, as well as, play more modern and contemporary musical pieces. Some of the top requested pieces in 2018 were: Canon in D by Pachelbel, Jesu’, Joy of Man’s Desiring by Bach, Ave Maria by Bach/Gounod, Bridal March by Mendelssohn, A Thousand Years by Christina Perry, Perfect by Ed Sheeran, Hallelujah by Cohen, All of Me by John Legend, Marry Me by Train, Marry You by Bruno Mars, and A River Flows In You by Yiruma.

Having  live music at a wedding ceremony gives the musicians ability to adjust a piece – to lengthen it or end it at any time, or create a carefully timed crescendo or glissando for a bridal entrance or special moment within the ceremony. Live musicians can work with the couple to pick music and have it arranged in a way where it flows seamlessly from the prelude music, to the processional, to the bridal entrance and beyond.

Having a professional harpist perform at your wedding is fairly unique. A harpist can virtually play almost any type or genre of music chosen by the couple. A harpist has the standard wedding music on hand and mastered. However, with enough advanced notification, many harpists are happy to accommodate special music requests. A common practice is to get unknown music to your instrumentalist at least 6 weeks prior to your wedding to ensure that an adequate amount is available for the piece or pieces to be learned. It never hurts to book your harpist early – at least 12 months or more in advance, if possible.

A harpist has the ability to play indoors or outdoors. With the modern couple opting for non-traditional wedding sites, the harp is able to be setup and play outside or in a wedding barn. Most harpists only require and request that they not be asked to play in the rain, though shade is greatly appreciated on a very hot day. Another great option is to hire the harpist to play at both the wedding and then the cocktail hour of the wedding. It’s fairly easy to move the harp from one place to another if the wedding ceremony and cocktail hour are in the same general location. A harpist does not require amplification or electricity, though many harps have amplification features built into their harps and can be amplified electronically, making it easy in all venues large or small for the harp music to be heard.

Budget and Affordability
When planning a wedding, considering your budget is important. Most harpists play as a solo instrumentalist and can handle all of the musical selections needed for your wedding and/or cocktail reception. A harpist can meet all musical needs with one instrument instead of using multiple musicians or groups at your wedding, making it an affordable option. Harpists can play together with other instruments or accompany vocalist if desired. Hiring a harpist can truly be your one stop shop for wedding music for your special day.

Written by Emily Fife – Harpist