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Stephen Peterson's Harp Story

March 30, 2015
Posted by
ravenna harp and hands

It's easy to get caught up in the daily business of making, selling and supporting our harps and hammered dulcimers, but every once in a while a customer tells us a story that reminds us of why we are really doing this. Time after time, we hear about the ways in which music has enriched the lives of both players and listeners, and often about a particular experience that inspired someone to learn the harp or hammered dulcimer.

Here is one such story, told by Stephen Peterson of Arlington, VA.

I've loved harp music for many years though I have never entertained the thought of actually learning to play...or so I thought. Recently, I found a Bucket List I wrote back in 1990 while living in Germany.  #3 on the list was Learn to play the harp.  I had completely forgotten about it.  25 years later, thousands of miles, and some major life changing experiences, that desire has come to fruition.  In 2011 I witnessed both my wife's and my mother's passing.  As I sat in each of their hospital rooms waiting for The hour, a harpist entered asking if they could play.  Of course, I agreed. It was then I got to witness first hand the calming effect this music had and a new fire of desire for the harp was born.  Even though I had the desire, I just couldn't bring myself to actually go through it and purchase a harp and dedicate myself to learn.  I don't know why. I just didn't.  Since their passing I've become a very active member in my church.  One of my ministries is to make regular visits to hospitals and retirement centers to give my time and prayer to the patrons.  Still it wasn't until this year that my desire to learn not only was reignited but caught on fire.  Recently, during one of my visits to a retirement center, I witnessed a harpist perform for a group of senior citizens.  During his performance one of the residents passed.... very peacefully while sitting in her chair.  Her last words were "music of the heavens."   During the hectic scene that followed, the harpist continued to play and really made a difficult situation so much better. This experience caused the desire to learn the harp to explode in my heart and [...] I've finally decided I'm going to do it.  I realize it will take time to learn but I'm fully dedicated.  As far as the Ravenna goes, I've research[ed] many harps on line and though most were lovely, Ravenna's sound just rang true to me.  This rich sound, portability, and your company's reputation for excellence sold me.  It will be an excellent first harp to learn on.  Thank you for allowing me to share this.  I'm really excited about this and can hardly wait to begin another chapter in my life providing peace and joy to others. By the way.... I ordered my Ravenna 26 yesterday.

If you have a harp or hammered dulcimer story you'd like to share that you think would bring inspiration to others, email or mail it to us and we'll do our best to include it in a future blog post! Photographs are welcome as well.

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