Play the harp in a professional orchestra, group, or solo performance.

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Salary Range
Highly Variable

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Harpists do?

A Harpist plays the harp in classical settings, such as orchestras, symphonies, ensembles, and even solo acts. As a Harpist, you’ve probably trained for years perfecting your string-plucking talents, and you have the calluses to prove it. Despite the instrument’s elegant looks, harp strings are tough and thick, and it requires strength to play.

Of course, apart from physical strength, you’re also endowed with great musical talents. You know how to play not only by ear, but by sight and touch as well. And to round out your musical virtuosity, you have a love for the artistry of classical music, and an appreciation and understanding for the technical skills that go into playing it.

The harp requires the dual talent of plucking strings with your fingers and pumping pedals with your feet. It’s in this way that Pianists make great Harpists, and vice versa. The configurations of pedals and strings, notes and harmonies not only make sense to you, but they’re also second nature to you. You’re creative with your playing because, being both an Instrumentalist and a Technician, you know that there are multiple ways to get to the same sound.

Playing professionally in concerts and symphonies means hours upon hours of practice, but if it’s what you love, then you won’t mind. And if you want to stray from the traditional route, you don’t even have to stay with a symphony. There’s a demand for your talents in weddings, anniversaries, and other events as well. Either way, you literally get to play the music you love as a career.

Should I be a Harpist?

You should have an associate's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.

  • Also known as: Harp Player

    How to become a Harpist

    We recommend at least an Associate's degree. Check out these schools offering Harpist-related education!
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