Live 26: Christmas Carols release, and how to learn a new piece?

with No Comments

Polish Christmas Carols are now available to buy! CLICK to check them out!

Cover of the Polish Carols with harp and Christmas tree

Your questions about the Christmas collection asnwered!
  1. Will there be a physical printed version of the Polish Christmas Carols available to buy?
    No (at least – not yet)!
  2. What’s the level of the pieces in the collection? Which ones are the easiest?
    The Polish Christmas Carols are organised from easiest to more challenging, with mixed in two bonus versions for more advanced players.
    First two Carols are possible to be played with 2 fingers (they will work for anyone who played for as short as a few months), the next four titles are suitable for players at the stage of using 3 fingers. (Of course you are free to choose your own fingerings, the ones in the book are just suggestions!) The most challenging Carols, such as In Bethlehem Today (Dzisiaj w Betlejem) or the advanced version of The Joyful Tidings (Wesołą Nowinę) will be suitable for players with about 2-3 years of experience.
    The number of years is not arbitrary! Remember – it all comes down to how much practice you can do!
  3. What harp will I need to play the carols?
    The range of the collection is from the lowest note being 5th octave B (the B below low C) to 3rd octave E (the E above the high C). That lowest string is being used in:- Gdy się Chrystus Rodzi – When the Christ Is Born
    – Mizerna Cicha – Still and Lowly
    – Wesołą Nowinę – The Joyful Tidings (only 2 instances of B)
    Mędrcy świata – The Wise MenAll are are easily transposable an octave higher, and you may either choose to transpose a single note or a whole bar.The collection is suitable for both lever and pedal harps. Lulajze Jezuniu (Lullay Little Jesu) will also work on a non-lever harp tuned in C, like my small 20-string Adventurer harp that you can see in the video.No pedal or lever changes, so nothing to worry about here 😃
Today’s topic: how to start learning a new piece?
Step 1: Have a look at the page and look for PATTERNS
Example of a not-so-obvious patterns from Still and Lowly (Mizerna Cicha), which may look very different at first glance, but are actually same notes played in different rhythm.
Step 2: Understanding the FINGERING
Write in lines between finger numbers if you need them to be more aware of placing
Practise placing without worrying too much about the rhythm first, but make sure that fingers are placed together.
Step 3: Rhythm
Start by practising the rhythm away from the notes – tapping both hands lines (right hand rhythm tapped by your right hand, left hand rhythm tapped by your left hand). Check out Live Harp Lesson no 16 on complex rhythms and Flip the Rhythm book that I was using!
Next week’s topic!
Do you have any questions about the Carols? Let me know if there’s anything you’d like me to talk about, or tell me what you think about my other idea for this next lesson (towards the end of the video!)

Would you like to receive materials from past Live Lessons?

Leave your email to access the materials and receive updates about new resources.

Watch the lesson
Series of mini-lessons for beginner and intermediate harpists

Watch every Friday 11:00 am (UK time)