Harpist Elizabeth Jane Baldry read music at Exeter University and studied harp at the Royal College of Music.
A professional harpist since 1994, she gives around one hundred performances a year as well as appearing regularly on television and radio. She has released a successful solo CD of Victorian fairy harp music, and contributed to a CD of chamber music by the composer Paul Lewis. This latter achieved worldwide distribution with Koch International. In 1998, she recorded a solo library disc for Studio G, from which her own compositions have been used by ITV, the BBC and by Irish, Japanese and Canadian film, radio and television. Concert Favourites, a CD recorded last year, has just been released, and in June she will be appearing in a new ITV series Landscapes about artistes in the South West.
Elizabeth Jane’s rediscovery of Victorian fairy harp music has led to many quaint adventures – radio and TV broadcasts, appearances on the West End stage, at the Royal Academy of Art’s exhibition of Victorian fairy paintings, at Prince Charles’ unveiling of the newly restored fairy oak tree in Kensington Gardens, involvement with Les Fées, a major French exhibition and an appearance in the award-winning Canadian television documentary, The Fairy Faith – all these and more besides making her England’s unofficial Fairy Harpist!
Elizabeth Jane Baldry’s warm, rich tone on the harp is much commented on and was chosen for the soundtrack of ITV’s Bernard’s Watch. More than fifty episodes of this magical children’s series have been made and broadcast around the world including America, Canada, Iceland, Kenya, Iran, South Africa, Poland and Cyprus.
Music for weddings
Elizabeth Jane is always happy to be invited to play for weddings and parties, finding them to be an oasis of celebration in a busy performing life.
The harp works brilliantly at weddings. It is both romantic and unusual. During the civil ceremony – which can so easily be short and soulless – guests are often profoundly moved by the music, saying it lifts the event into an entirely different league, adding grace and dignity to the occasion. This is wonderfully rewarding for everyone.
During the reception the music creates just the right relaxing ambience, cushioning the conversation so there are no awkward silences, and generally enhancing the atmosphere. Guests hear a huge cross-section of musical styles from light classical to popular songs, so there is something for all of them to enjoy. It also works well to have the harp in the church whilst the registers are being signed.
Elizabeth Jane Baldry is also part of several duos:-Harp & Flute, Harp & Soprano, Harp & Storytelling and ‘Two Golden Harps’.