Wales Harp Festival 2021

The Eternal Muse

30 + 31 March 2021

Festival Director: Elinor Bennett

Festival President: Osian Ellis
(1928 – 2021)




30 / 31 March 2021

An great opportunity for harpists from Grades 1 – 7 to participate in virtual classes with others of similar a standard.

Masterclass / Session 1

Masterclass with Elinor Bennett

30 March 2021, 4:00 – 5:30pm

Elinor Bennett invites harpists to send recordings of music for comments and help in preparing and interpreting.


Lecture: ‘Working with Benjamin Britten’ by Osian Ellis

30 March, 7:30pm

A recording from our Festival in 2013 of a lecture given by Osian Ellis.


Remembering Osian

30 March 2021, 8:30pm

(English) Tributes by colleagues and friends.

Masterclass / Session 2

Masterclass with Elinor Bennett

31 March 2021, 12:00 – 1:30pm

Elinor Bennett invites harpists to send recordings of music for comments and help in preparing and interpreting.

Performance & Discussion

Sioned Williams: Reflection and Inspiration

31 March 2021, 2:00pm

A heartfelt tribute, through words and music, to inspiring harp teachers – Osian Ellis, Mair Jones ac Ann Griffiths.


Cofio Osian

31 March 2021, 5:00pm

An opportunity for friends of Osian to share memories (Welsh language).

Virtual Performance

The Meeting of the Waters

31 March, 6:00pm

A special concert of Irish music by friends of the Wales Harp Festival from Dublin.


Festival Concert

31 March 2021, 8:00pm

Osian Ellis: Dagrau / Lachrymae
Benjamin Britten: Suite for Harp
Osian Ellis: Clymau Cytgerdd i 2 delyn / Diversions for 2 harps

A Message from Elinor Bennett

Artistic Director

The virtual version of the Wales Harp Festival aims to transmit the harp’s “eternal muse” to future generations.

Events will be held online to remember the Festival President,  Osian Ellis, with contributions in word and music from Osian’s students and colleagues.

Covid will not prevent us from keeping traditions alive.  In the middle of our troubles,  the harp and its music can raise spirits and enrich lives.

Read the full message here.

Course Teachers

Elen Hydref

Elen Hydref

Welsh harpist Elen Hydref enjoys a career freelancing with some of the UK and Norway’s finest orchestras including Welsh National Opera Orchestra, Royal Ballet Sinfonia, Royal Opera House Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra and The Norwegian National Opera and Ballet Orchestra. Alongside her orchestral career she enjoys teaching and has tutored on the National Children’s Orchestra of Great Britain and Wales Harp Festival courses several times.

Elen studied with Elinor Bennett and Dylan Rowlands in North Wales before moving to London to study with Skaila Kanga and Catherine White at The Purcell School of Music and The Royal Academy of Music.

Whilst preparing for the Strings Final of the BBC Young Musician Competition in 2004, Elinor Bennett arranged for Elen to have a series of lessons with the late Osian Ellis.

Elinor Bennett

Elinor Bennett

ELINOR BENNETT studied with Osian Ellis at the Royal Academy of Music, London, after completing a degree in Law, and played with major British orchestras in her early career. Elinor has made many recordings, ranging from 20th Century classics  to Welsh traditional music on Triple Harp.  Leading composers have written for her, and she directed harp studies at Bangor University. She was awarded OBE for services to music and  Honorary Fellowships from the  Aberystwyth, Bangor, Cardiff, Universities, Fellowships from Royal Academy of Music and Welsh College of Music and Drama,  and an Honorary Doctorate in Music from the University of Wales. She has directed the Thai International Harp Festival, and the  Wales International Harp Festival.  

Ann Jones:
We are very sorry that Ann Jones will not be able to take part in the Wales Harp Festival this year for sad, personal reasons. Very recently, Ann’s husband passed away. We send our deepest condolences to her and the family at this difficult time.

Thanks to our Sponsors


The Wales Harp Festival is organised by Canolfan Gerdd William Mathias (William Mathias Music Centre).

Canolfan Gerdd William Mathias provides high quality music tuition and experiences to people of all age groups at its centres in Caernarfon, Denbigh and Ruthin and through an extensive programme of education and community projects.

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Let’s stay in touch!

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