Services From Julia Read Bagpiper and Harpist in London
Quality Harpist Julia Read
Bagpipes & Harp for Your Event
I offer the bagpipes and/or harp for functions such as weddings, funerals, corporate events. I have been playing various instruments for over 40 years, ranging from jazz clarinet, guitar, bagpipes, harp and piano, but for events I specialise in offering the Bagpipes and Celtic Harp. I can offer both instruments for the same event - although I draw the line at playing them both at the same time!
Based in Marlow, Buckinghamshire.
Thank you for viewing my profile page and I look forward to hearing from you. Julia.
Hayley Seymour• Jan. 24, 2022
Wow, Julia was given less than 2 days notice as my client was let down by a previous planner and Julia came to the rescue. I will be using Julia’s service for my future events.
I highly recommend Julia and her services she provides.
My client was blown away by the elegance of the harp she played at his proposal
Neil Wilkie• Dec. 17, 2019
Julia was absolutely brilliant at my father’s funeral. Beautiful playing and very respectful.
Rachelle Cornel• Jan. 24, 2019
Julia was fantastic - would highly recommend!
Rachael MacKay• Dec. 8, 2018
"Julia was excellent. She arrived super early and looked and absolutely fantastic. She was very accommodating with my daughter who wanted to ""help"" and about the cramped space in a small old beamed pub.
Wish we'd asked for another dance !
Laura francis• Nov. 17, 2018
Very professional, extremely accomplished musician , friendly and accommodating to meet our requirements on the day . I have no reservations whatsoever in recommending her for any event , we will book her again . Julia is delightful , she genuinely cared about making the day very special for my elderly Scottish parents and her extra suggestions of when / where to play were really helpful ! Thank you Julia
Heather Piper• Oct. 13, 2018
"Hi. I would rank Julia higher than 5 if it were possible! She was superb. My daughter had the unusual request of asking if Country Road by John Denver could be played at the wedding on the bagpipes. Julia happily agreed that it was possible. She went to the trouble of recording and sending a clip for my daughter's approval. It was perfect!
Julia arrived before everyone. Made friends with everyone and was certainly a hit.
She performed more tunes than we initially requested and made suggestions of when and what would be good to play.
I would most certainly recommend Julia to anyone and everyone.
Thank you so much, our day was even more perfect than we ever imagined."
How long do you play for?
The quote that I provide for you always covers the timings specified by you when you requested a quote. I can play for as hours (such is my repertoire and stamina!), but typically this isn't needed. Weddings for example might take 2 hours if I'm playing for your guests arrival and also piping you up the aisle and back down again. A funeral typically sees me at the location for an hour and will include piping the hearse to the chapel of rest, piping the coffin in and piping afterwards. It is really up to you and what you want, but I'm here to help guide you in terms of what I've done at other events.
Do you have your own PA and lighting?
As a bagpiper, I don't need to provide PA and lighting. It's not generally part of my performance.
Do you have Public Liability Insurance and PAT tested equipment?
I do sometimes get asked about liability insurance, which I don't have. This is never a problem because I am self sufficient and don't have any electrical equipment that needs PAT testing or could potentially do any damage.
How much space do you require?
I will play in the space that is most relevant for your event, but generally I only need standing room. At a Burns night supper then we typically parade the Haggis around the dining area. At a wedding then I often play to attention at the entrance to the church or reception venue. I am very used to marching whilst playing, having performed in many pipe bands over the years. So I can navigate most spaces, including low head height ceilings in pubs.
My favourite tune is not on your list. Will you be able to play it?
Absolutely! If you want it played, then I will do my very best to play it for you. The bagpipes does have some limitations in terms of the notes that it can reach, but we can give it a go. You make the request and I'll let you know if it can be done on the Pipes.
How many breaks do you take? How long are they?
I don't tend to take breaks because it is rare for me to be asked to play for longer than 40 minutes in one go, for example for guest arrival. Other parts of my performance are much shorter, for example piping in the birthday cake to Happy Birthday. After which I stop, congratulate the recipient and then play a 5 - 10 min medley set, depending on what you want. I have a special performance that I've worked out for Birthday parties that always gets rave reviews - book me and you'll find out what it is! It helps everyone to enjoy the playing and get involved.
Bagpipes: traditional Scottish bagpipe tunes + a variety of pop tunes eg Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, The Lion King, Game of Thrones