The evolution of an idiomatic language in harp writing, notation and repertory from the 16th century to the present.

 

Lucia Bova

The evolution of an idiomatic language in harp writing, notation and repertory from the 16th  century to the present.

THE MODERN HARP

In recent years a number of excellent texts dedicated to the harp have appeared on the international publishing scene. These texts represent beyond doubt an indispensable part of the harpist’s library, providing in-depth studies of two aspects of the harp, which, however, they maintain strictly separated: new and extended performance techniques, and the history of the instrument.

The innovative nature of the present text lies instead in its ability to retrace the evolution of idiomatic harp writing, through a study of compositional styles and an analysis of significant harp works by contemporary composers. To this purpose, it presents a highly elevated number of examples taken from the compositions of some of the most important composers on the international panorama.

This kind of approach allows one not only to acquire tools that are useful in studying and performing the specific works examined, but also to gain a deeper comprehension of the wide range of compositional styles that currently define New Music. For these reasons, the volume is intended not only for students following courses in harp performance, composition and chamber music but also interpreters, teachers, composers, historians and all those who wish to study the contemporary repertoire from the perspective of its instrumental writing.

The fact that in Italy L’Arpa Moderna has been adopted as a textbook by many conservatory professors, and that numerous requests have arrived from students and teachers all across Europe to publish an English translation of the book, is sufficient to conclude that the structure of the book, and the methodological accuracy with which the topics contained in it are treated, still fill a considerable gap in international scholarship dedicated to this instrument.