Denholm, Anne


Anne Denholm is one of Britain’s leading young harpists and served as Official Harpist to HRH The Prince of Wales from 2015-2019 . She is earning a reputation for her interpretations and powerful performances across a variety of musical fields.

Anne underwent a British musical upbringing, studying at the Junior Department of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, the Purcell School, Newnham College Cambridge University and the Royal Academy of Music (RAM) in London. She received her Master’s from the RAM with distinction, studying under Karen Vaughan and graduating with the Renata Scheffel-Stein Harp Prize and a Regency Award for notable achievement. Whilst at the RAM she was the first ever harpist to win the historic RAM Club Prize. Anne enjoys giving regular solo recitals across the U.K. and further afield, from music clubs and societies to international harp festivals. Recent highlights include a trip to Bangkok for the Third Thailand International Harp Festival, two performances at the Wales International Harp Festival, a solo recital for the RNCM Strings Festival and travelling to Bogotá, Colombia to give two recitals and a workshop.© Timothy Ellis

Anne is increasingly in demand as an interpreter and performer of new music; she has been recording and premiering new works for solo harp since 2006, and in 2013-14 worked with Sally Beamish on a video project of her work, ‘Awuya’. She is a founding member of award-winning contemporary experimental quartet, The Hermes Experiment,and has enjoyed working with Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, Spitalfields Music and Mahogany Opera Group.Anne has worked with composers from secondary school age to professionals; for three years she worked as an instrumental tutor on the annual Sound and Music Summer School at the Purcell School, and has regularly worked with composition students at Birmingham University and at other institutions via her work with The Hermes Experiment.

Image Credit: 
Kevin Day
  • Total duration: 5'42
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Anne Denholm harp

David Sawer has written extensively and with great imagination for harp for many years, but always in ensemble. This short work is his first for solo harp – and indeed, it’s one of a tiny handful of works he’s composed for any solo instrument in an otherwise prodigious output, giving it a special place in the repertoire.

Between was composed in 1998 for the distinguished harpist Osian Ellis, then celebrating his 70th birthday year. Far from a virtuosic showpiece, it’s a gentle, beautifully ethereal work which captures  a kind of otherworldly essence of the harp completely without sentimentalism.

Rolling, enigmatic harmonies support a loping triplet melody that emerges like a half-remembered song from fluid, contrary motion arpeggios. The phrases are like breaths; sometimes long, sometimes short, with pauses in between and a rising and falling dynamic. The feel is dream-like with traces of uncertainty that never quite become discomfort: a ‘wrong’ note here, a truncated or lopsided rhythm there suggest the ambivalence of the title.

Between what and what are we held? Or between where and where? The harp strings, the notes – the silences? Sawer enraptures us for just six, earthly minutes, but his music haunts us in after-echoes for a good while longer.


Between was commissioned for the Aldeburgh Autumn Britten Festival with funds provided by the Britten-Pears Foundation and first performed by Osian Ellis at the Jubilee Hall, Aldeburgh, 20 November 1998.


Between was recorded at CBSO Centre, Birmingham on 13 April 2019.

DAVID LEFEBER Recording Engineer and Producer

Universal Edition
Catalogue number:
NMC DL3042
Release Date:
27 September 2019