Got a Gig!!

handsontheharpTuning the harp is something I’ve learned to love.  You have to make it fun because it requires so much time.

Switching from piano to harp as my primary instrument required a learning curve that was unexpected and quite challenging.

Tuning.  And for a long time I hated it.   Today, however,  I can look back and see that it was the endless, enforced tuning of the harp that released my repressed musical self.     Comprende?

On Saturday afternoon, Nov. 7, I will be playing with my harp at the “Downton Abbey Tea” a fundraiser for a local library.  The event will be held at a local tea room.

Come!  Listen to me tune & play & tune again!   You’ll love it.

 

Now, back to tuning.  Along the way I stumbled on the frequency debate of 440 vs 432.  If you are a musician who tunes you probably know what I’m referring to.

Or maybe not.  Recently at the Harper’s Escape I met a very accomplished harpist who I immediately wanted to know better.  Later in the weekend, after we had shared a few classes, I asked to borrow her tuner.  It really doesn’t take much to knock a string out of tune.  However, immediately i noticed that her tuner was set to some bizarre number like 437……I corrected her device, with her permission, and then began to tell her what I’d learned about tuning frequencies.  For the time thus far into the weekend she had been unable to tune her harp so that it was in tune with the rest of us.  It was beyond frustration for her.  I explained what had happened and our friendship was forged.  The electronic tuner, like all devices, enable us to create settings that were nearly impossible before.

The difference between 440 & 432 hz  is quite an interesting read if you’re interested.  You might want to start here.

Divine Dramas………

 

Wow!  Sunday was my first-ever storytelling performance with a harp, and the audience was delighted.  I recognized some serious applause and I was told later that everyone was talking about me, although, I don’t think it was really me they were talking about….it was really about the harp.  Once again  I forgot how utterly mesmerizing this instrument is to most people….and me too, of course.  For all the worry, anxiety, and practice….the music just flowed exactly the way it was supposed to.

chironachillesharp

Chiron teaching harp to Achilles

In the first person, I told the story of Chiron’s Birth and why he came to be living in a cave with his harp.

This centaur, known as The Wounded Healer, is a mythological story that has captured my attention for the past 20 years or so and I’m frequently referring to his symbolism in my lectures/workshops and yoga therapy classes.  He’s got a powerful story for our times, for sure.  So many of us  feel wounded, shamed, abandoned and just plain old sad.    I’ve blogged a bit about Chiron, the asteroid, and this post gives a pretty good overview of the astrological Chiron.   Today Chiron is traveling thru Pisces which supports healing thru music.

 This was the first time, in a long time, that rather than teach or facilitate,  I practiced Performance & (intentional) Drama.    I was totally unprepared for the sheer joy that I experienced after it was over and thruout the following day.  It was wonderful to find a new, creative outlet that brings together so much of what I love to do, and still challenges me in new ways.  But four minutes is nothing when your hands are on the strings, you know?

Already, I am planning Chapter 2, and expanding my story to maybe 10-15 minutes?  Who knows?  For now, Storytelling is a new hobby/activity for me and I am so excited to see where it takes me.

Sonnet

I am in need of music that would flow, over my fretful, feeling finger-tips, over my bitter-tainted, trembling lips, with melody, deep, clear, and liquid-slow.

Oh, for the healing swaying, old and low, of some song sung to rest the tired dead, A song to fall like water on my head.  And over quivering limbs, dream flushed to glow!

There is a magic made by melody: A spell of rest, and quiet breath, and cool heart, that sinks through fading colors deep to the subaqueous stillness of the sea, and floats forever in a moon-green pool, held in the arms of rhythm and of sleep.

–elizabeth bishop

Neptune approaches Pisces.  Ommmmmmmmmm.

Why do you play the harp?

the t-shirt was black this year I  returned home from the 2009 Harper’s Escape on Sunday.  The tunes are still running thru my head, awake and asleep.  I am filled with joy and gladness that so much joy and gladness can be shared with harps.  Yes?

40 of us gathered strong under  gloomy, doomy October skies to learn a few tunes, in community with each other.  Angels as well as devils showed up. Spiritual energy/vibration allowed it to be all okay, just as it is.

Om shanti. Peace to all.

On Sunday, we performed as a sort of harp orchestra at the local public library.  We were quite the hit; a waiting line stood patiently outside the room for the entire performance hoping for a seat to open up.

I was relatively pleased and content with my own ‘performance’, noticing with every breath how the inner critic is still alive and well!

But, once again I was amazed and awed by the sheer diversity of our group.  The harp is what brought us together and held us in-common.  Regardless of color, creed, culture, or zodiac sign, we worked together for an entire weekend to create a concert for the public.  Peace is always possible.

Astrologically speaking it was a weekend of Neptune/Chiron/Jupiter & Moon energies.  Sweet, serious, and silly all together with lots of food, drink, and water…….it rained a lot.  The balsamic phase of the moon was occuring in Late degrees of Libra.  Read more about balsamic, it’s very important to understand our human need for deep rest.

 

Gotta go practice……I’m haunted by the Harris Dance.

Musings

Recently, I have had many good reasons to delve further into how & why we heal. Because, some of us actually do heal from our physical/mental/emotional/spiritual challenges. And some of us don’t.
It’s a fine line that divides those that do from those that don’t, and it takes a  subtle, intuitive eye to discern. Microscopes are useless if you’re looking for the big picture.
I’ve learned from a 40+ years of raja yoga practices that we are, indeed, more than just our bodies. We are more than our minds and our emotions, too. This is a concept not easily grasped by many. And yet, there are certainly changes to see. Look around. Beginings and Endings are what help us be ‘in time’.
When I began to learn about symbolic languages, brand new neural pathways formed in my brain. Modern day brain science has validated for me, everything that I knew intuitively growing up. And, I am not alone. Many, many, many people, everywhere are waking up to the same realizations about who we are, and who we are not, every day.
The Alphabet vs The Goddess, by Leonard Shlain is a wonderful book that really makes a bold statement about how language has shaped us as a culture, and as individuals. A fascinating read.
Many of my early astrology teachers required us to memorize the meanings of the houses/signs/planets by using KeyWords. Once you had established a growing vocabularly it becomes easy to create interpretations. Whether they are accurate, useful, or necessary is a discussion left for another time. It was clearly understood by many, that you cannot understand and learn astrology from just reading books about astrology; most especially if you were planning on consulting with clients as a practice.
Gotta run.
Om peace.Man's First Breath