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June 2, 2016

A Freebie | A Product Video | An interesting article from 2016

March 29, 2020

Dear Friends,

We hope you are coping well and perhaps enjoying some time to finish projects, go for walks, or even rest.....  We are still rebuilding both our websites, and they continue to limp along (kind of like Destiny in Stargate Universe, our current late night entertainment). Just a reminder that our site isn't working with Chrome.

This week we present the first half of exercise 1 from a book by Angelo Bovio (1824-1909). We have a handwritten letter from Patricia Jaeger asking us to publish her edition, with fingerings and dynamic markings. This is a rare opus of progressive studies and can be used without pedals.  Since we didn't have the files, we are re-typsetting it.  Because of the edits, it is taking us a long time.  Reba and I are sharing the love in this project! Lots of fingerings to put in - one fingering number at a time.....  Once the book is complete, we will sell it as one unit.  For now, you'll receive bits and pieces.  Exer 1 first half

The following article was written in June of 2016 and is presented here again for your enjoyment.  It was inspired  by Kim Robertson's exquisite arrangement of "I Vow to Thee" from 2006.

Gustav Holst, (1874-1934) born in Cheltenham, England, is probably best known for his  Planets Suite

As a child, he loved the piano and practiced it for hours, but did not like the violin, the instrument his father chose for him. He had neuritis in his hands, which made practicing a pain (literally.)

His first job was in 1893 as organist in a small village. An aspiring composer, this experience helped him understand the inner workings of vocal music.

Gustav's grandfather (Gustavus) was a harpist! His father (Adolph) was an organist and choir director. His mother, Clara, was a singer. She died when  Gustav was only 8. His stepmother, Mary Thorley Stone, was a pianist.

Gustav and his wife, Emily Isobel Harrison, had one child, Imogen, who was a composer. She was also assistant to Benjamin Britten and became head of the the annual Aldeburgh Festival. You can read more about Imogen here . Gustav had a younger brother, Emil, who was an actor. Emil's stage name was Ernest Cossart. Gustav Holst's name at birth was Gustavus Theodore von Holst. He dropped the "von" in 1918.

If you're further interested in Imogen Holst, there is a book called Imogen Holst, A Life in Music from Boydell and Brewer publishers:  Here.

Gustav Holst died at the young age of 59 from complications due to stomach cancer surgery. Here's an excellent web site to learn more about Mr. Holst:

You can even follow Gustav Holst on Twitter  Follow us on Twitter

Jupiter, from The Planets, is a Holst piece that is very popular for the harp. Its beautiful melody was brought to our attention first by Kim Robertson. It is also a tune found in many hymn books, Catholic and Protestant.

True for many hymns, the tune is named after a town. The village of Thaxted was established in 1205, in open countryside in the district of Essex, England. The hymn (poem) also known as "Oh God Beyond All Praising" was written by Cecil Spring-Rice. More information can be found at It is also known as "I Vow to Thee My Country".

[Ralph Vaughan Williams and Gustav Holst are often thought of as the great modern English composers of hymns. Their music is majestic. They are sometimes confused with each other - I even found a Holst website with a picture of Vaughan Williams incorrectly inserted above Holst's name.]

Below are some of the arrangements we carry.

Meredith Mancini: Mancini's arrangement

Janet Witman: Witman's duo arrangement (intermediate duo)

I Vow to Thee - Kim Robertson's arrangement: Kim's original arrangement, advanced intermediate

Ensemble version that goes with this solo version: Ensemble parts to go with above

Beth Kolle and Laurie Rilley: Wedding Music for the Lever Harp (it's in this book) Riley/Kolle arrangement

Debbie Friou - Classical Music for the Harp: Friou arrangement (in this book)

Darhon Rees-Rohrbacher - The Restaurant Book, Classical: Classical Restaurant Book - paper version (in this collection). Also available as a download: Classical Restaurant PDF download

The Classical Fake Book: - lead line only, huge book.

Harpers Hall Ensemble Book V2: Harpers Hall Trio Version (trio for mixed levels)

Angi Bemiss V2 Classical Selections: Bemiss Version (in this collection) 

Rhett Barnwell  -  I Vow to Thee  and PDF version.
The versions in the following books are not as complete/full/challenging as the solo ve rsion. 

Kim Robertson: Shall We Gather  Shall We Gather Book (in this collection)

 Kim Robertson, Highland Heart:  Highland Heart Book  (in this collection) 

 Kim's website:  Kim Robertson Website

If you have read this far, thank you!  Here is a You Tube of "I Vow to Thee My Country" that you might enjoy.

We made a YouTube of William Mahan's recent coloring book, experimenting with a new microphone after 2 months research.  It seems to be working well after many failed attempts using really good microphones with old computers and interfaces.  We're not sure if we have it close enough to the harp - please let us know. I guess sometimes you just need to buy new equipment....

Harpers Coloring Book
Harpers Coloring Book

We hope you enjoyed this eblast.  Because it was originally written in 2016, I was not able to update the social media links below and there is no instagram link so here's an old fashioned link  -
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Brought to you by Melody's Traditional Music & Afghan Press Music for Harp. Thanks for reading down this far!  Have a great and harpy day!