Londoner’s love to spend the warmer summer months in our capital’s parks and gardens. To make the most of the warm summer days, Grosvenor Gardens are hosting a series of free lunchtime and evening events and concerts as part of the Summer in the Square Festival.
Grosvenor Square is one of London’s most attractive public spaces and offers just under 2.5 acres of pristine lawns to the public.
The square is divided into four different zones: the performance stage, a food hub and a quiet area to relax. There is also a games area that offers table tennis, and a human size Jenga and Chess board.
There are families enjoying a summer’s day in the city, those who come for some relaxing ambience, as well as workers making the most of their lunch break.
We headed down on a beautifully sunny Monday lunchtime to be adorned by the wonderful music of harpist, Olivia Jageurs and flautist, Rosanna Terberg. Instantly we began to unwind.
After the event we chatted with harpist Olivia Jageurs to find out how she got involved in the festival and where she will be playing this summer.
How did you come to be involved in “Summer in The Square”?
This is my second consecutive year playing at Summer in the Square. I was first contacted to perform at the event through my agency, Young guns .
So how old were you when you started learning the harp, Olivia?
I was ten years old.
The harp is quite an unusual instrument of choice, what/who encouraged you to take this instrument up?
The only place in the country that still makes harps is called Pilgrim Harps
, and is in a small town called, Bletchingley, which is the next town along from where I grew up. They also provide a harp rental service, which was always a great help.
Where did you study the harp?
I spent five years training in the Junior department at Trinity College of Music before gaining a first class degree in musicology from Manchester University. I then completed my masters at The Royal Academy of Music in London. I am also currently on the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s Foyle Future First scheme for 2013-2014.
What have been your career highlights to date?
I made my BBC Proms debut last summer, playing chamber work by Indian composer Param Vir, but I think it has got to be playing at The Wimbeldon Championship Finals Royal Box for the 2013 and 2014 finals. Where last year I was lucky enough to serenade Andy Murray to victory.
Where can we see you performing in the near future?
I will be giving several recitals this Summer with flautist Rosanna Ter-Berg at venues such as the Saatchi Gallery. I am also looking forward to playing the Ravel septet again at the St. Endellion Festival
in July, and at the end of the year I will be on a stadium tour as a harp/percussion soloist for Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds The musical.
As a full time harpist can you shed a little light into your daily routine?
My time is kept very busy with performances, rehersals and practising. As well as performing at private events and weddings. I am a harp teacher at Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School, Holland Park and have a number of private students in Surrey and North London.
And lastly, if you could recommend one musical event in and around London this Summer for our readers to attend then what would it be?
Festival is always one of my summer favourites.
For more information please see here : http://www.olivia-harpist.com/