So you’re getting married? Congratulations! You’d like a harpist to play for your wedding? You obviously have excellent taste. I thought I’d write this guide for happy couples to try to answer some of the questions I get asked when being booked to play for a wedding.
The first thing to do is email me (my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org). I’m very friendly and would love to hear from you. We can chat about anything you like but it’s helpful if I have the following information:
1. The date and venue of your wedding
This is vital information to know from the start as I’ll be able to tell you immediately if I’m available. Knowing the venue from the start is great too as it means I can give you an accurate quote (see my page of standard fees). There may be a small extra charge if a change of venue is required (for example, if your ceremony is in a church but your reception is in a hotel).
2. Which part of the wedding would you like harp music for?
There’s lots of choice for you here. Most weddings have three main ingredients:
- Drinks reception
- Wedding breakfast
I am able to play for any combination of the above. When it comes to the ceremony, obviously the music is of utmost importance – let me know your choice of entrance and exit music as soon as you have decided, if you have a specific choice for the signing of the register, let me know that too and I’ll get practising!
p.s. ask me to email you my repertoire list too
Drinks reception and Wedding breakfast both simply require background music (up to two hours for drinks or three hours for breakfast).
3. Are there any special arrangements needed?
Aha… here’s the tricky bit.
A harp is worth anywhere between £16,000 right the way up to £50,000 and more, so we need to look after them very carefully.
Ideally, a venue will have the following:
- A reserved car parking space near an accessible entrance – stairs are the enemy here. Think like a dalek. If there are a lot of stairs it’s not the end of the world, we may just need to make sure some staff are on hand to help me with any heavy lifting I may need to do. That’s what the best man is there for, right?
- A place for the harp to be played that isn’t in anybody’s way but also isn’t too near a radiator/open fire
A little note about playing outside – it is possible, if the following are available:
- Shelter from the sun/rain – lots of venues have parasols that can be put up – trees aren’t enough I’m afraid
- Somewhere nearby to put covers and my trolley just in case the weather changes and I need to make a dash for it
Having said all this, if you have any questions, let me know and I’ll do my best to accommodate your wishes. I’m here to enhance your special day.
Ok, next. We’ve arranged the date, venue, any music requests and agreed on the fee, phew! Almost done, now we just need to make it official.
All harpists will have a different system here. But here’s mine:
- I’ll email you a contract to confirm all the details of your wedding
- A 50% deposit will be payable immediately
- The remaining fee is due two weeks before the big day
- The big day arrives, wonderful music happens, happiness ensues.
So there you have it! The ultimate guide to booking a harpist for your wedding. I really hope this helps, if you have any questions, just drop me an email – I’d love to talk through any queries you may have.