Celestial sounds: the life of a harpist

“People often associate the harp with heaven and angels,” says Manon Le Comte, a harpist who has been performing works like The Nutcracker, among many others, with the NAC Orchestra for over 35 years. “But there’s a very concrete aspect to it all: the pedals, the 2,000 metal parts, and one ton —two thousand pounds — of tension on the soundboard."
Manon makes playing the harp look effortless, but in fact she is very occupied with the many mechanisms of the instrument.  "The harpist is actually very busy, in a very practical way, operating the pedals, concentrating on the notes, on not making too much noise with your fingernails, on watching the conductor and the music." 

Marnie Richardson's avatar
Marnie Richardson

Associate Producer, Digital Media Creation and Community Engagement / Productrice associée, Médias numériques et volet communautaire