Where can I buy an affordable, quality harp?
Hi! I am beginning to learn the harp, and would love to own one myself. I am fifteen though, and don't have a thousand dollars to spend. Are there any retailers, stores, websites etc. that sell good quality harps at an affordable price? I don't have a set budget now, I have an open mind. But I would like to keep in lower. Thanks so much!
You didn't say what type of harp you are learning. If you are learning Celtic (lever) harp, you CAN find a travel harp or a William Rees "Harpsicle" for under $1000. I have never played a Harpsicle, but I've heard that they're okay. Some of these have levers and some don't.
But if you are studying pedal harp, the cheapest I've seen is around $8,000, although maybe you could find one a little less. DON'T buy a really old pedal harp without expert help; some of these aren't playable.
If you have a teacher, you need to talk to him/her and get some advice. Rental might be a better option for you.
I started with one of the little Pakistani Rosewood harps that you see advertised on Ebay for a few hundred dollars. These are usually not very good; some are awful. BUT occasionally someone finds one that's okay. I used one for a couple of years until I decided I really wanted to go further.
Then I found a Blevins Encore that has a cosmetic problem and was priced lower than average. Now, 10 years later, I have a Lyon & Healy Prelude, which has always been my dream.
I wish I had better news for you. You may be able to find a good used lap harp somewhere. I think the harp community really needs to address this problem; unfortunately I think it often turns the harp into an instrument available only to little girls with doting parents, the extremely wealthy, or professional musicians.
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