Almost all of my pupils and I play harps made by Belfast’s Brian Waugh and his father, Mervyn, who taught him his craft. Brian makes a range of harps, from learner models 26 and 34 to the stunning Eala, who’s shape is inspired by the curve of the swan’s wing.
I was delighted to bring along a talented young pupil of mine, Mollie Flack, to perform a few tunes on our Ealas during the workshop.
One of the most unique and special features of the Harps Alive/An Cruit Bheo event was its use of event spaces right across the city of Belfast, widening access to the tradition of Irish harping and dissolving cultural barriers to the music. I felt hugely privileged to have had the opportunity to play my harp on the once troubled, now rejuvenated Shankill Road.