Sylvia Woods Harp Center
February 2021 Newsletter
Heart with harp
Valentine's Day is coming. I hope your true love will give you the PERFECT gift to show how much they love you.
Would that be chocolate? Flowers? Jewelry? Nope.
Nothing says "I Love You" like a new harp or harp music!

I've been selling Ellen Tepper's music for 20 years, so I'm delighted to be featuring her in this issue. Check out her article and her sale music below.

I hope you get precisely what you want on February 14th. But, if not, buy yourself a "harpy" valentine's day treat!

Sylvia
A Fun Video
I recently found a fun YouTube video that I want to share with you. It was created by Lejo (aka Leo Peterson), a puppeteer who makes programs for Sesamstraat, the Dutch version of Sesame Street. You can find lots of his videos on YouTube. But #63 features a harp!

He has a unique harp technique and plays with just one finger: his pinkie! But he makes lovely music. Enjoy!
New Music at HarpCenter.com
In the Garden Trotter
About 99% of the music I sell on my site is playable on either lever harp or pedal harp. However, the PDFs I've added this month are arrangements strictly for pedal harp by Louise Trotter. Louise wrote an article for this newsletter in April 2015. She passed away in 2019. I'm pleased that Mary Radspinner and other harpists have collaborated to transcribe these beautiful arrangements.

Louise Trotter's beautiful arrangements of popular hymns from her Sacred Treasures CD have been transcribed for pedal harp.
Our Featured Arranger: Ellen Tepper
Ellen Tepper
Ellen Tepper is our featured arranger this month. Here's what she has to say about herself and her music.

I was born in Port Jefferson, New York. From early childhood, my parents fostered my love for music and creative arts. At the age of five, after seeing a group of young people playing harps on television, I knew that the harp would become my instrument of choice.

In 1960, when I was seven, my family moved to Vienna, Austria. I took piano lessons for a year, and when I turned eight, I began studying the harp under Hubert Jelenik at the Vienna Music Academy. As the youngest student at the Academy, I was known as Die Kleine, the little one. 
Ellen Tepper
After returning to New York, I studied harp with Pearl Chertok and Maestro Mario de Stefano. I attended the Philadelphia College of Art for a year and then enrolled at the Philadelphia Musical Academy, where I studied harp with Margarita Csonka Montanaro. She was an excellent teacher and brought to my attention a problem I had developed: I did not read music well and compensated by memorizing as I went along. (I certainly do not recommend this approach!) Under her expert guidance, I became a better musician and received a BM in Harp Performance in 1978.

I studied at Drexel's School of Library Science and ran the Settlement Music School library for a short time. I also worked as a baker at a natural foods restaurant and played harp gigs. 

After taking time off to raise three children, I began teaching private harp lessons and have been doing so for over 30 years now. I love teaching all ages, and I especially like to work with students who have a musical background. Teaching is like doing a jigsaw puzzle, helping them find the missing elements to get to that "Aha!" moment.
Ellen Tepper
I have performed at hundreds of weddings. I've also played for funerals, where I feel my harp and I provide something vitally important. My most difficult performances have been while playing through grief: for my best friend's funeral in 1979 and a whole weekend of gigs immediately after my father died on Good Friday in 2011.

For the past 20 years, I have performed off and on at the historic William Penn Inn in Gwynedd, Pennsylvania. Playing in a restaurant is difficult because I never know who is listening or precisely what they'd like to hear. I prefer to play in a concert setting, where I can interact more meaningfully with the audience. For that reason, I love to play in the memory unit of nursing facilities. I set the music free, and someone catches a memory. People tell me what has stirred them, and some even write poems about it. You never know how your music will affect the people who hear it.
Ellen Tepper Triple harp
When performing unfamiliar music, I’ve discovered I can engage an audience when I offer a context and make them laugh, so I talk about the music and set up jokes in my performances. A favorite is my program of "The History of the Harp in Ireland," where I tell stories and play both the Irish gut-strung and wire-strung harps.

A lifelong passion for early music has resulted in my collection of early harp replicas, as well as a baroque triple harp. In the early 2000's I played with the Pracktitioners of Musick, an early music group in Princeton. My most technically challenging performance with them was Handel's Concerto. I played it on the triple-strung harp, using the earliest score with the original instrumentation. I’ve also served as a faculty member at Early Music Week at Pinewoods Camp in Plymouth, Massachusetts.
Jameson Sisters
Although I’d never sung before, I started taking voice lessons about ten years ago. I now sing with Terry Kane in our duo The Jameson Sisters, playing my Celtic harp while Terry plays the mandolin. We perform Celtic music, standards, and opera arias. We have two CDs: Burns Night! is Scottish music, and Neat! is Irish.
Ellen Tepper artwork
I’ve been torn between art and music my entire life. In the late 1990s I began to work in polymer clay and combined that with dressmaking to create historical dolls and dolls for breast cancer survivors. I also began to paint the images that I had embroidered. I make Reverse Paintings on plexiglass, painted from the back with oil-based ink markers and acrylic paint, a technique which requires thinking backward and putting the finishing touches on first.
Ellen Tepper artwork
So indeed, my early family emphasis on both music and art has followed me throughout life. The best advice I've ever received was to Keep Going! Learn more music, push the harp's envelope. And learn the standards, because people don't always know what they like, but they like what they know.

-Ellen
This month's sale
This month's sale includes seven PDFs by this month's featured arranger: Ellen Tepper, and Sylvia Woods' Harp Fingering Fundamentals book or PDF.

To get the 15% discount on the products below, enter the code word Ellen in the "Enter Promo Code" box on your shopping cart page and click "Enter Code" by February 28, 2021. For more information, see the "How to get the 15% discount" section at the bottom of this newsletter.
arranged by Ellen Tepper
15% off with Ellen code
for harp duo, trio, or treble instruments by Ellen Tepper
15% off with Ellen code
by Ellen Tepper, Therese Honey, and Darhon Rees-Rohrbacher
15% off with Ellen code
arranged by Ellen Tepper
15% off with Ellen code
arranged by Ellen Tepper
15% off with Ellen code
for 4 or 5-part harp ensemble arranged by Ellen Tepper
15% off with Ellen code
for harp duo, trio, or violin/cello arranged by Ellen Tepper
15% off with Ellen code
And, in honor of Lejo
(see the article above),
book or PDF
is also on sale.

This book won't teach you
how to use your fingers as puppets like Lejo does,
but it WILL teach you
how to figure out fingerings
in your harp music!
by Sylvia Woods
15% off with Ellen code
How to get the 15% discount
15% off select sale items when you use the code word Ellen

Our newsletter promo codes are redeemable online and are only valid for the products featured in the sale section of this newsletter. They are not valid for phone or email orders. This month's code word is Ellen.

Here's how to get your newsletter discount at harpcenter.com:
#1. Put the items you want to purchase in your cart.
#2. On the page where you view the items in your cart, type this month's code word Ellen in the "Enter Promo Code" box and click "Apply."
The actual price of the featured sale products on this page will then automatically change to reflect the discount. For example,

   Unit Price: $9.95 (which is the original price)
   Total Price: $8.46 (the discounted price)

You'll also see a note below the Promo Code box saying the name of the promo code you entered and the percentage amount of the discount.

REMEMBER: you must enter this month's code word Ellen in the Promo Code box and click "Apply" on your shopping cart page by February 28, 2021 to get the discount!
If you forget, or if you have trouble adding it to your order, email Sylvia immediately.  
 
Offer expires at the end of the day on 2/28/2021.
Sylvia Woods Harp Center
Lihue, Hawaii
(808) 212-9525