As 2010 draws to a close, it seems a good time to look back on Camac's activites throughout the year.
Commercially, 2010 saw the launch of our online boutique, where you can buy music, CDs and DVDs and harp accessories. There are also new string charts, to help make ordering strings less confusing, especially for parents and other non-harpists.
We also launched an online second-hand harp list. Our second-hand instruments often come to us in part-exchange for new Camacs. We overhaul them thoroughly before selling them on, so you can be confident that the instrument is in as good a condition as it can be.
You can access both our online boutique and second-hand shop via our commercial site, www.camac-harps.com. This site also, of course, contains details of all our models of concert, electric and lever harps currently for sale. There are links to our partner stores abroad, technical manuals, our quarterly newsletter Harpseasons, and an artists' gallery. We aim to be as accessible to as many parts of the world as possible and this year added a Polish version of our main website, for which many thanks to Marta Mogielnicka for the translation. Don't forget that we are also looking for new welcome music for our commercial website - see "Become a Camac Voice!" on Harpblog for details!
We are delighted to report that our new models launched in 2009 - the concert Elysée and Vendome harps, plus the ultra-wearable DHC Blue Light, have enjoyed great success in 2010; the DHC Blue Light is selling so fast even Deborah Henson-Conant herself has had to go on the waiting list. More and more harpists are putting their trust in our instruments and service, developing longstanding collaborations with us and becoming our friends. Our harps can now be found in the homes of professionals, top orchestras and music colleges throughout the world. Ten years after Camac's founder Joël Garnier sadly passed away, his spirit lives on: his love for the harp, his passion for innovation and quality, his open-minded willingness to listen to suggested improvements, and his affection and respect for the harpists without whom no harp would sound at all. At the start of 2011 we look forward to a concert in Paris celebrating Joël: we are touched beyond words by the response from the harp community, which caused the concert to sell out before we had sent out the official flyer.
One of the things that gives us enormous pleasure, and which is certainly also a continuation of Joël's spirit, is the sponsorship and support we are able to offer to harpists. This naturally includes festivals, competitions, and recitals and recordings by top international artists. General music festivals tend either to neglect the harp, or only to programme its most standard repertoire: in contrast, festivals within the harp world play a key role in promoting new repertoire and celebrating fine harpists. Competitions discover new talent and provide valuable and intense experiences for young harpists, and it is wonderful to celebrate our instrument's most brilliant artists. However, it is also important to us to sponsor beyond these traditional avenues. If you mostly offer classical début recitals to international competition winners, you only help about three people a year. We aim to be much broader, more democratic, and to recognize the huge variety of ways in which musicians can develop flourishing careers for themselves. Our news blog, www.harpblog.info, reports on everything that is going on, and we never cease to be amazed by and to admire harpists' diversity and creativity.