• Olivia Higgins

Advice for the Adult Student

Updated: Jun 15

It is never too late to start learning to play the harp!

1. Decide your goals

This is your time and your journey. Establish why you want to learn to play the harp? Why did you choose this instrument? Knowing the answers to these questions can help keep you motivated and talking them over with your instructor can help them know how to teach you. Do you want to be able to play the music you hear for fun, or play with a group of friends? Maybe you would like to play for weddings or play at church? Whatever the primary goal is, your instructor should be able to tailor their teaching to help you reach your goal.

2. Establish a set time to practice

This might seem redundant, but reserve a portion of your day for harp practice. Like any other activity you would add into your life, going to the gym, meditating, etc make it a habit by adding to your schedule. Don’t give yourself the chance to put it off, by adding to the schedule it will no longer feel like a negotiable time in your day. Making this time nonnegotiable on your daily schedule will help you stay disciplined enough to make steady and observable progress, and ultimately keep you motivated to continue.

3. Listen to music

Find inspiration and set goal pieces! Youtube and Spotify are my greatest resources for harpists. After a few months of playing the harp, it becomes more mundane then when someone first starts playing, it’s just not as exciting anymore. Finding pieces that you are interested in is a great way to get inspired and motivated. If a student brings me a song that they really want to learn, I will help them learn it to the best of my ability! As an adult student, this is your journey and I’m here to help you play the music you want to play so whether it is a musical theatre piece, folk song, classical piece, etc make a “bucket” song list that helps you stay excited to learn new pieces!

4. Patience

Learning a new skill does not happen overnight. You will have periods of extreme breakthrough where everything is going great, and periods of what seems like standstills. If you find yourself feeling frustrated, breathe, slow down and try again, or take a break. Learning music takes time and repetition, so have patience and give yourself grace.

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