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15% reduction and teacher for free if teacher participates with at least 6 students. 

Workshops & specials 


NB. Items marked with an *asterisk are also suited for non-harpists like other instrumentalists and non-harping companions. 




New Blues  

- by Deborah Henson-Conant 

Saturday, October 12, 14.15-15.15 / €25 / register here 


Do you like to play the New Blues? Learn the intricacies from Deborah herself! Don't know the piece yet? Order it from the webshop, practise it, and play along in this great group lesson on October 12th. 

For this workshop, it is requested that you practised Deborah's New Blues beforehand. 


Arranging part 1 and 2 - *also for non-harpists 

- by Rosetty 

Saturday, October 12, 11.00-12.30 & 13.30-15.00 / €45 / register here 


In this 2 x 75 minute workshop, you will learn the basics of arranging popular music. Rosetty is the arranger of many Dutch hits and composer of the 'Harping Together' sheet music series. She has been the principal harpist of the legendary Metropole Orchestra for years. 

Other instrumentalists like piano players are also welcome to participate. 


Harpomania / A taste of pop harp 

- by Ghislaine Maclaine Pont & Annemarie van Dijk 

Sunday, October 13, 11.15-12.30 / €25 / register here 


Do you want to be able to play your favorite tunes on your harp, at your own level? In this fun and practical workshop, you will learn where to start. Ghislaine and Annemarie will teach you how to work with accompanying patterns, melodic and rhythmic variations, and more. 

Workshop taught in Dutch, translation on request with prior notice. 


A taste of singer-songwriting - *also for non-harpists 

- by Habiba 

Sunday, October 13, 11.15-12.30 / €25 / register here 


Would you like to write a song, but you don't know where to start? Do you come up with nice melodies, but do you get stuck with the words? Do you easily write nice lyrics, but do you get stuck trying to find a suitable melody? Do you end up using the same chords and rhythms all the time, making your songs all sound the same? Then this workshop is for you! 

Other instrumentalists like piano and guitar players are also welcome to participate. 

Workshop taught in Dutch, translation on request with prior notice. 


Write a pop song / Singer-songwriting for 8- tot 11-year olds - *also for non-harpists 

- by Habiba 

Saturday, October 12, 11.00-12.15 / €25 / register here 


In this workshop, we will write a pop song together! At the end of the workshop, you won't only be able to sing and play a song that you helped create yourself, but you will also know how to start writing your own songs at home!  

Other instrumentalists like piano and guitar players are also welcome to participate. 

Workshop taught in Dutch, translation on request with prior notice. 


Gear up your harp / Amplification & effects 

- by Brenda Dor-Groot and others 

Saturday, October 12, 13.45-15.00 / €15 / register here 


We will start with touring the expo, and searching for stuff to amplify your harp and create great effects. Then we will actually hook up both electric and acoustic harps and you will learn how to work with cables, mics, amplifiers and effect pedals. 




Strings of Passion / From Idea to Performance - *open to all 

- by Deborah Henson-Conant 

Sunday, October 13, 13.30-14.45 / €25 / register here 


How do you turn a good idea into a catchy performance?  

First-class performer Deborah Henson-Conant will give you insight in her creative processes in this great lecture-performance. Out of the ordinary, into the extraordinary. 


Body Percussion - *open to all 

- by Gigi Biolcati 

Saturday, October 12, 15.00-15.30 / free / no registration necessary 

Sunday, October 13, 10.30-11.00 / free / no registration necessary 


The Indonesian Saman, Ethiopian Armpit Music, the Palmas in Flamenco, the Hambone, an African-American plantation dance from the US, all these folk traditions in music use body percussion. And now we are stomping, patching, clapping, snapping with the only instrument that every student possesses. The human body gives you a direct experience of musical elements, such as beat, rhythm, and metre and helps you internalise rhythmic skills. Discover how the human body can make the most enchanting rhythms possible! 


Publish your music / Introduction and Q&A - *also for non-harpists 

- by Igor List & Inge Frimout Hei 

Saturday, October 12, 16.00-17.00 / free / registration recommended 


Where do you start if you want to publish your own sheet music and recordings? What is allowed, and what isn't? How to go about all the rights issues? Igor is a specialist in the field of intellectual property and copyright law. Inge, a harpist, owns her own sheet music publishing company. They will share their knowledge and answer your questions. 

Other instrumentalists, singers and interested individuals are also welcome to participate. 


Listening to jazz - *open to all 

by Kurt Schwab 

Sunday, October 13, 11.30-12.30 / free / registration recommended 


Listening to jazz is much more fun if you know what to listen for, and if you know a little bit about important artists, styles, and recordings. Come sit down and enjoy Kurt's great selection of music and his wit and enthusiasm. 

Open to all interested musicians and listeners. 


How-to-survive-a-jam-session crash course - *also for non-harpists 

- by Kurt Schwab 

Saturday, October 12, 19.30-20.30 / €5 / register here  

NB. location: De Branderij 


Playing at a jam session, how does it actually work? Picking up your instrument and join the group is a good start. But what are the habits, and how do session musicians interact while playing? Saxophone player and IJHF education professional Kurt Schwab has been leading sessions for years at various clubs. He will teach a fun and practical crash course before the jam session on Saturday night. 

Other instrumentalists are also welcome to participate. 


Jam Session - *also for non-harpists 

- led by Kurt Schwab 

Saturday, October 12, 20.30 / free 


Saturday night is reserved for one of the most important elements of the Festival and the Academy: the jam session. 

An extra safe place for harpists ànd other musicians to join a jam session: no judgements, lots of fun, and with an enthusiastic audience. 

Followed by the Afterparty. 


Jazz harp from the Twenties till Today / video presentation - *open to all 

- developed by Sabine Meijers 

continuous video presentation @ the Expo / free 


The development of jazz harp is presented to you in picture and sound. Early harp pioneers like Caspar Reardon and Adele Girard. Harpists that became very popular in the jazz world of the 60s and 70s like Dorothy Ashby and Alice Coltrane. And jazz harpists like Park Stickney and Edmar Castaneda, writing music history today. 

Continuously available for viewing at the expo. 


Private lessons 

on request 


Private lessons with Deborah Henson-Conant, Maeve Gilchrist, Rossitza Milevska, and other faculty members are available upon request. Please send an email to for details and availability. 


Open mic sessions - *also for non-harpists 

Saturday, October 12 & Sunday, October 13, 12.30-13.30 / free 


On Saturday and Sunday, we will host open mic sessions on the Expo hall stage.  

Be there at lunch time to enjoy the meal and music offerings, or better yet, sign up at the Festival desk and share your music with us! 


Expo - *open to all 

click here for opening hours and more info / free 


At the heart of the Festival facility, the main hall of Het Leidse Volkshuis, a unique range of harp builders, harp stores, amplification experts, harp societies, etc. will present lever, pedal, acoustic and electric harps, amplification gear, sheet music, cds, upcoming events, and more. Make sure to schedule some time for yourself to browse through this all and try some harps and amps now that you've got the chance! 


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