The Cromarty Suite Now Published
Posted on 30 September 2014
The Cromarty Suite – written by Corrina Hewat, Mary Macmaster and Patsy Seddon was performed at this year’s Harp Village in Cromarty. It has been purposefully written for a wide range of players, from recent beginners through to advanced, so all participants will have an important part to play in creating the music.
The piece is wholly inspired by Cromarty, mainly the connection with Sir Thomas Urquhart, Hugh Miller and the Emigration Stone.
The Cromba Air (Cromba is the Gaelic word for Cromarty meaning crooked bay) is a beautiful and spacious tune and serves as an introduction and welcome to the whole suite.
That is followed by Mary’s 2 tunes, the first inspired by the works and writings of Sir Thomas Urquhart, first Laird of Cromarty and is called ‘Translating Rabelais’ The second tune is a slow air with the sorrowful title of ‘Remembering the Cromarty Firth from a London Jail’ which formed a part of Sir Thomas’ life story.
Then it is into Patsy’s tune inspired by Hugh Miller, and is simply called Hugh Miller with the subtitle ‘breaking open the stones on the Cromarty beach to expose the fossils inside’. The sound of chipping can be heard in this cheery slow reel. But it has a reminder that the very last stone that Hugh Miller cut in Cromarty was a gravestone for his young daughter.
Following that, Corrina’s tune is a dance in 3/4 and 3/8 called ’39 Ships Long Since Gone’ and is inspired initially by the Emigration Stone in Cromarty which has the name of all the ships that left Cromarty for the New World. The piece incorporates joy and sadness thinking about Cromarty Bay being the last place the emigrants would have seen before leaving for their new lives in Canada or Australia.
The whole suite is then finished off with the Cromba March echoing back to the first piece and one which all 3 musicians wrote together. It is uplifting and is a happy triumph over adversity and hardship kind of tune.
It’s a fitting end to the musical story of Cromarty.
The Cromarty Suite has now been published as a music book with all the parts for harp players and is on sale for £10 plus post and packing from the Cromarty Arts Trust.
The Cromarty Suite has been written for 4 ability levels of harp playing so that you can choose which one suits you best. Whether you're a recent beginner, an elementary student, an intermediate player or advanced player, you will enjoy learning this beautiful score.
Harp Village 2014
Friday Sept 19th - Sunday 21st September
This year we have commissioned a very special suite of music about Cromarty and homecoming - the Cromarty Suite- which will form the basis for the workshop tuition at the Harp Village. 3 tunes will be written by Corrina Hewat, Mary Macmaster and Patsy Seddon and will be performed at the Friday night concert as a complete suite of music. Over the weekend, students will learn the tunes and will all get together to perform it at the final afternoon concert on Sunday 21st September at the Stables.
This is a unique opportunity to take part in this very special event
This year's tutors are Corrina Hewat, Patsy Seddon, Mary Macmaster, Heather Yule and Una Monaghan from Belfast, Northern Ireland.
If you're a budding harp player, a player of some experience or someone who has always wanted to try but haven't taken those first steps yet, the Cromarty Harp Village is the place to be in September.
First of all, which of these categories would describe you best?
You have very little experience of playing harp at all. You have had relatively few lessons, you may require help with basic technique. All Absolute Beginner workshops will be with Heather Yule
All the other tutors will be teaching all the different ability levels over the weekend so you will have time with each of them.
You have only just decided to learn the harp and have had some lessons and are working your way up to performing tunes.
You can already perform simple tunes, require further help in consolidating basic technique and wish to work slowly and carefully.
You have been playing a few years, may need some pointers with technique, and wish to work at a moderate pace, slowing down if need be.
You already have good technique and can work at a moderate pace and wish to stretch and challenge yourself.
LEVELS ARE A GUIDE, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO ASK IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION REGARDING ABILITY OR WHICH CLASS YOU SHOULD BE IN.
Run down of the weekend:
Friday Sept 19th
Arrive in Cromarty and check in at the Old Brewery for shared accommodation unless you specifically request a single room. Please let us know at time of booking.
All rooms are bright and airy and sleep 2/3 people.
7.30pm Tutors' Concert in Stables - a chance to hear your tutors and the specially commissioned piece of music you'll be working on over the weekend.
SATURDAY and SUNDAY
8.30am Breakfast at the Brewery
10am - 11am Practise time/free time
1pm – 2pm Lunch at the Brewery
6pm Dinner at Couper's Creek -the Harp Hub for all residential participants
8pm – 11pm Harp and Song Session in Stables with your tutors and other local musicians
Residential Weekend Ticket
This is a full weekend ticket for the Harp Village which includes B&B accommodation on Friday and Saturday, lunches on Saturday and Sunday and dinner on Saturday night, a Friday night concert ticket for the participant and 4 workshops (2 on Saturday and 2 on Sunday) The Saturday Evening Session and the final Harp Demonstartion with Una Monaghan and the Sunday afternoon Concert featuring the Cromarty Suite.
Non Residential Weekend Ticket
All the above except B&B
Non Residential Weekend Ticket (without catering)
This is a weekend ticket for the Harp Village which includes a Friday night concert ticket for the participant and 4 workshops (2 on Saturday and 2 on Sunday) and the Saturday Evening Session and the final Harp Demonstartion with Una Monaghan and the Sunday afternoon Concert featuring the Cromarty Suite.
Friday Concert Tickets £10
Workshops cost £20 each.
For any more information please contact:
Cromarty Arts Trust on 01381 600354 or Caroline Hewat 01349 877434 / 07751 821800
For those of you who are coming to Cromarty but don't want harp lessons . . try this
Harp Village 2014 Companion’s Trail Saturday Sept 20 and Sunday Sept 21
Guided walk round Cromarty with visits to Hugh Miller’s Cottage http://www.hughmiller.org the recently restored East Church http://www.eastchurchcromarty.co.uk
Lunch at Sutor Creek http://www.sutorcreek.co.uk
Afternoon trip for 2 hours out on the Cromarty Firth with Eco Ventures for a spot of dolphin watching and if we’re very lucky an occasional Minke whale see http://www.ecoventures.co.uk/wildlife/other-sealife
Evening meal at Couper's Creek with all the harpers and their students.
Choice of time off on Saturday night – either an evening in the local pub or the Royal Hotel or the Stables Harp Session with harpers and local musicians.
We get on the Cromarty Ferry (Cromarty Queen) to cross the Cromarty Firth to visit some of the Seaboard Villages on the other side, taking in Pictish stones and historical places and churches. http://www.seaboardvillages.com/index.asp?pageid=147969
Then a visit to ANTA http://anta.co.uk/stores/2/Highland-Workshop the Highland’s most prestigious pottery and tweed shop for lunch and a bit of shopping.
Back to Cromarty on the ferry with a visit to the Cromarty Brewing Company for a taste of the local brew http://www.cromartybrewing.co.uk before we return to hear the final performance of all the harp students and tutors.
They will be performing the newly commissioned and specially written piece for the harp village at the Stables.
Harp Village ends around 5pm.
The Companion's Trail costs £200 per person and includes 2 nights accommodation and visits to all the above places (travel included)
Please contact us if you would like to know more about it.
The Cromarty Arts Trust
Ardyne, 19 Bank Street, Cromarty, The Black Isle IV11 8YE
For any more information please contact:
Caroline Hewat on 01381 600354 or 01349 877434 / 07751 821800