The vast majority of modern lap harps are designed either as student instruments with economical plywood components, or as therapy harps with low tension and soft voices. Neither variety is particularly useful for professional performance, stage work, or recording.
This has always struck me as an enormous shame. For most of its four thousand year history, the lap harp was the instrument of choice for professional musicians. It was light enough to be carried from venue to venue on one’s back, and, if built for the purpose, could command and hold the attention of a large audience, and provide a musician with more than enough dynamic range and depth of tone to challenge his or her talent to its limits.
It is time to reintroduce the idea of the truly stage-worthy small harp to the harping community.
The Niamh 27 string lap harp is designed to the same exacting standards as our floor harps. Its soundboard is broad, asymmetric, and compound tapered, made from unveneered premium quality tone-woods. Moderately high string tension permits a dynamic range that is unprecedented in such a small harp, and you will be amazed by the power, richness and balance of its voice. Its twenty-seven note range offers the harpist a full octave below middle C for bass arrangements.
However, despite its disproportionately huge voice, the Niamh still weighs in at a diminutive 9-11 pounds (depending on wood selection). This is a harp that can accompany you anywhere.
The Niamh also makes a fantastic instrument for therapy work. One can always play softly on a powerful harp — it is the reverse that is tricky.
Most musicians will be happiest playing the Niamh with the guitar strap we provide as a standard feature, but for those who prefer to play a lap harp without holding its weight, a lightweight, folding stand is available at additional charge.
• Height: 35″ • Soundboard width 14.5″
• Weight 9-11 lbs • Range C below middle C to A. 3 2/3 octaves.
• Solid Cherry, Maple, Sapele or Walnut frame
• Solid Spruce or Western Red Cedar soundboard
• Sturdy Colorado carrying case • C and F Camac Levers.
With full Camac levers, add $380
4 leg folding performance stand, add $225
Hard Colorado Flight cases also available