We first heard harpist Ted Davenport a couple of years ago. Entering La Vita e Bella restaurant in Vestal for Mother’s Day dinner, we were greeted by Davenport’s music in the lobby. The gentle tones carried throughout the dining room, adding a lovely ambiance.
This past Thursday Dec 10, we visited the Broome West Senior Center in Endwell to hear Davenport play a program of holiday music. For nearly 45 minutes, he offered smoothly flowing holiday songs, carols, and medleys. At times, center visitors lightly sang the words along.
Endwell was just one of four stops Davenport was making that day, with 40 gigs scheduled between Dec 10 and Dec 24. To learn more about the harpist and his harp, click here.
Davenport’s instrument is an Italian-made Salvi Diana concert grand harp, an elegant romantic style instrument of mahogany, maple and Sitka spruce woods, with fluted column and delicately painted floral soundboard. Its 47 strings span more than six octaves, and its seven pedals accommodate sharps and flats. Davenport traveled to Italy to research the instrument, then purchased from a dealer in Salem Mass.
Davenport’s love of harp music goes back to his youth. At about age 7, he attended a concert with his parents at Cornell University, where his father was a chemistry professor. “What’s that big box?” he asked, intrigued by the uniquely shaped object. Nearly 20 years later he would seriously pursue the instrument that had fascinated him. Mostly self-taught, Davenport has been playing for 10 years and still visits mentors in Massachusetts and North Carolina. He also offers private lessons.
Davenport plays for a variety of private and corporate events, as well as at country clubs, restaurants and nursing homes. He performed at Binghamton’s First Night in 2003 and 2004. You can reach him at Unikqe1@aol.com or (607) 724-4415.