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Salvi Harps

Camac Harps

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HarpMasters Festspiele 2014
25 May - 4 August, Switzerland

9th International Harp Academy

FUTURE Group: July 16 - 26, 2014

PRO Group:
July 24 - August 4, 2014 


Travel Information:
FUTURE Arrival: Wednesday, July 16, 2014
FUTURE Departure: Sunday, July 27, 2014

PRO Arrival: Wednesday, July 23, 2014
PRO Departure: Tuesday, August 5, 2014

3rd Slovenian Harp Competition

This Autumn HarpMasters Academy returned to the Balkan region: On the 25th-27th October 2013 the 3rd Slovenian International Harp Competition took place in Velenje, organised by the Slovenian Harp Association and Music School of Velenje, sponsored by Camac Harps. The competitors ranged from children to professional harpists and they competed in 5 different categories. As well as three main prizes in each category, gold, silver and bronze medals were also awarded. So in this way, each participant has the possibility to be rewarded for their performance. This gave the Slovenian competition a unique identity. The 3rd edition included the largest number of participants so far – 78 - from Croatia, German, Greece, France, Hungary, Japan, Italy, Lithuania,  Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Turkey and UK. 33 young harpists competed in the largest category “A”.

The members of the judging panel Marija Mlinar (Croatia), Sirin Pancaroglu (Turkey), Katja Skrinar (Slovenia) and Irina Zingg (Switzerland) had to 
make some difficult decisions as the standard in all groups was very high. For me it was very rewarding to see many HarpMasters Alumni at this competition: such as competitiors Rebeca Csalog (Portugal), Gunes Hizlilar (Turkey), Magdalena Hoffmann (Germany), Yuko Tomonaga (Japan).  Katja Skrinar (Slovenia), HarpMasters Academy Alumni 2006, enjoys a successful teaching career in Slovenia now and was our judging colleague this time. With pride and satisfaction I heard the performances of our young Harp Masters, who displayed once again the level of excellence of their playing. The results were - Yuko Tomonaga as the winner of the First Prize and Magdalena Hoffmann  - of the Second Prize in the professional category “E”. In category “C” Gunes Hizlilar was the winner of the Second Prize and Rebeca Csalog won a Silver Medal. We welcomed to the HarpMasters family Klara Woskowiak (Poland) who besides winning the First Prize in the Category “D” received a HM Special Prize – “Young Celebrity Master” position for 2015. Both Yuko Tomonaga and Magdalena Hoffmann will come back to Slovenia in the 2014-15 season to give solo recitals, as part of the special prizes received. Three days of excellently played music were packed till late at night. But we all still found time for inspiring moments of sharing, deepening our friendships and planning new joint projects. It was very satisfying for me to observe such friendly and supportive relationships which were experienced by all HarpMasters Alumni.

Visiting this region for the second time this year, I was once again impressed with the teaching work of Dalibor Bernatović, whose numerous students display very good instrumental skills, a high level of precision in working with musical material and respect for the music. In fact, the establishment of the harp in Slovenia in general is thanks to him. As the son of a harpist he started his career 27 years ago. At the time there were three professional harpists in the country and only one school teaching harp. Today 17 schools in Slovenia offer harp courses, there are over 280 students and 21 professional harpists, most of whom are ex-students of Dalibor Bernatović. He has taught over 50 harpists since then, and they have won almost 200 different international prizes. In addition, Dalibor Bernatovic founded the national Harp Association of Slovenia which aims to establish the harp in the country and the International Harp Competition of Slovenia to support harp education. In appreciation and recognition of his work, in the name of HarpMasters Academy, I was very pleased to present Dalibor the first HarpMasters Academy Award “Harp Personality”.

The 3rd Slovenian Harp Competition was a very intensive and highly successful event. For everyone involved it was both an emotionally and professionally enriching experience, and once again a true celebration of the Harp. - Irina Zingg

 HarpMasters Academy new Award: "HarpPersonality"

The new HarpMasters Academy Award “HarpPersonality” was established in October 2013. This award is intended to recognize and appreciate the work of persons, whose outstanding contribution has had a strong impact on the development of the harp on national or international levels.

“Following the main credo of HarpMasters Academy – to promote excellence in harp performance – we aim now, besides educating and supporting the young generation of harpists, to recognise and appreciate the work of dedicated harpists, whose work has been very important for the development of the harp. I strongly believe that these great personalities will stimulate the creativity of the young harpists and will inspire our new generation to contribute to the development of the harp in their own countries and worldwide” – says Irina Zingg, Artistic Director, HarpMasters Academy.

The awarded harpists will be featured in different future HarpMasters projects.

Yuko Tomonaga on winning the 3rd Slovenian International Harp Competition

“For the ability to perform with such a high level of concentration and to be able to open my heart, I have to thank HarpMasters Academy. In 2006 I first attended the Academy and was shocked to see the world standard of harp playing. Since then, regularly attending HarpMasters Academy in summers, I spent two years studying at RAM in London and, more recently, spent a few months at Russian Academy of Music in Moscow. Looking back I can admit, that my career has been “made by HarpMasters Academy”. If I had not come to HarpMasters in 2006, I would be completely different now, both as a harpist and as a person. A big “thank you” to HarpMasters Academy!

8th International Harp Academy & Festival

 8th HarpMasters Festival & Academy took place 17 July – 4 August in Muenchnebuchsee, Switzerland. The highest number of FUTURE & PRO participants so far – 36 - were enriched with an outstanding program: resident masterclasses with Milda Agazarian and Skaila Kanga (PRO) and Karen Vaughan and Irina Zingg (FUTURE), Orchestra Workshop with Karen Vaughan, Baroque Days with Mara Galassi, French Harp Repertoire with Isabelle Perrin, Celebrity Masterclass with Naoko Yoshino and inspired by Celebrity Masters recitals of Naoko Yoshino, Isabelle Perrin, Park Stickney and featured Young Celebrity Master Maureen Thiebaut. Festival concluded with Final Gala Concert of participants. Congratulations to all teachers and students who made HarpMasters Festival & Academy once again a successful and enriching event. Photos and reports coming soon. Join HarpMasters Academy Group for actual photos and posts on



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