The Many Types of Harps

Janice Ortega on the variety of different types of harps that have evolved over three centuries with a short history on their origin.


Lap harp - very portable, limited range, lightweight  - universal black strings and red strings. Danny Boy or Londonderry Air

Lever harp - less expensive than a pedal harp – usually 36 strings but the size can very - popular for all ages and all levels of ability. Chinese Moon

Classic lever harp - helpful to use in learning as a  transition to pedal harp or to further pursue the lever harp.  Canon in D, by Pachelbel

Student Pedal harp - same size as lever harp but with seven pedals for playing in different keys. The youngest instrument in the orchestra. Lever harp existed for centuries. Soundboard Sitka spruce, 2000 moving parts. Made from a maple hard wood - great resonance - pedals alter the pitch by a half step. Allows the harp to compete with classic instruments. Enables keyboard music to be re-written for the harp - Greensleeves or What Child is This?

Full-size student pedal harp. Full range of strings. Elvis. I Can't Help Falling in Love.

Concert grand harp. For solo, chamber, and orchestra performances. The Little Fountain.