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Katrien Delavier

Souce: Wikipedia

Birth: January 24, 1961 in RoubaixView and modify the data on Wikidata

Died: September 21, 1998 (aged 37) in Tourcoing

Birth name: Catherine Gabrielle Pauline Delavier

French nationality

Activity: Harpist


Catherine Delavier is a French harpist born in Roubaix on January 24, 1961. Her Flemish first name Katrien is the mark of her belonging to or her attachment to Flanders, or more precisely to Flemish culture.Katrien Delavier died of cancer on September 21, 19981 in Tourcoing2. A tribute was paid to him as part of the International Celtic Harp Meetings in Dinan (Brittany) on July 10, 1999, as well as to the Bordées dunkerquoises, in his hometown, in September 1999. She was a classical harpist during her training, but very quickly turned to the Celtic harp with nylon strings, bronze. For years, she played in duet with Gérald Ryckeboer, as well as with Jacques Yvart and many other musicians (such as John Wright, Violaine Mayor, Kristen Noguès or Jean-Michel Veillon or Michiel Sikiotakis).


In turn, she teaches, whether through internships (including that of the Cornouaille Festival3 or the International Celtic Harp Festival of Dinan) or courses. She has taught the harp in the music schools of Halluin, Calais, or in private lessons.

Work on the harp

Her work was mainly focused on the metal harp and more precisely on bronze strings, for which she worked with the Swiss luthier Claude Bioley. Resulting from his research work on ancient harps, collaboration with this luthier allowed him to reconstruct a balanced instrument, capable of withstanding the high draft due to metal strings and not gut or nylon as with a classical Celtic harp. Several tests were made in line with this work, with table or carbon strings, change the overall shape, etc.

For her part, she played with her nails, like finger-picking guitarists. More dynamic, this game made it possible to further accentuate the attack of the strings and the high harmonics.

With Gérald Ryckeboer, she works on the interpretation of Scottish classical music, and in particular the similarities between the ornaments used in song and in Scottish bagpipe music, which she reproduces on the harp. Thus, she transposes all the ornaments of the Piobaireachd on the harp (with a fast and very dry play), just as she could hear it from the song (cantaireachd). She thus establishes an analogy of interpretation, for the same piece, on three different instruments (harp, song, Great Highland Bagpipe).

With John Wright, she will do the same work of interpretation between playing the Uillean pipe and the harp for ancient Irish music. to copy the game to the regulators.

His harps were tuned in unequal temperament, in particular by the establishment of a fair fifth, particularly adapted to the modal nature of the old Scottish or Irish repertoire, allowing him to accentuate the harmonic richness of the metallic strings.


In 1982 she won the first prizes at Kan ar Bobl (Lorient) and the international Celtic harp competition in Killarney (Ireland).

Choc de la musique, for the record Harpes d'Irlande - Fishing in the rain, by Le Monde de la musiquen 2

fff for the disc The Irish harp, by Télérama


Katrien Delavier La Harpe Irlandaise, 1992 (PS 65095) 5, n 1

Katrien Delavier Harps of Ireland, 1995 (PS 65143) 6,7,

Hempson Early Irish Music, 1996 (B 6794)

Blootland "Songs of the Sailors of Flanders", 1988 and 1991 (PL 93011)

Participation in the discs of Jacques Yvart: L’Échelle Beaufort (1985), Around the ocean (1987), Jacques Yvart sings André Devynck (1994), Jacques Yvart in concert with Katrien Delavier (1999).