The harp provides a soothing and calming sound, it is an ancient instrument with a long history of healing.
Therapeutic harp music can be delivered in hospitals, hospices, nursing homes and the community. The music is played to create a restful space, provide comfort, lift spirits and for relaxation. Music is personalised at the bedside for the client in that moment and may help to ease physical, mental, emotional and spiritual difficulties. During a therapeutic session a client may look, listen, talk, sing, rest, shut their eyes or sleep while I listen, observe and respond in a way I think is beneficial for the client at that time. Playing is tailored to the client by observing the clients breathing, body movements and expressions. The client is the focus of the visit. Each visit will be different as each client is unique, and will respond differently at different times.
Individual harp therapy is suitable for people in their own home or in nursing and care homes. The therapy harp is small and light and can be played at the bedside accommodating any sensory impairments or physical dificulties a client may have. Familiar and improvised music will be played to meet the mood of the client during the visit.
If a client is able to they are welcome to play the harp, on their own or as a duet with Alice. The therapy harp is lightweight and can easily be held over the bedside to facilitate playing
Therapeutic harp will not change a diagnosis or treatment but may provide some respite for the client, and allow them to be distracted from their health or environment and relax and have some personalised quiet time.
Harp music may play a part in pain relief, provide distraction, promote steadier breathing and relaxation, increase quality of life, stimulate memories, and provide a personal interaction.
Research carried out at the San Diego Hospice demonstrated that harp music helped to create easier breathing for 71% of clients, and reduced anxiety levels in 84% of patients. In addition, 63% of clients report reduction in pain when live harp music was present (Tourin 2003).
Tourin C (2003) Healing music for harp Emerald Harp Productions, California.