Original Harp Solos  in order of publication

4001 - Carillon - (Solo version, composed 1992) - Festive
This is the original setting of this piece, composed for Derek Bell, harper with the group The Chieftains – and celebrating ‘bells’ in homage to him. In 3 sections entitled: Campanile, Chimes, Carillon.

Available on: CD: The Belfast Years  Sheet music   Sheet music download  Download CD track.

4002 - Eleanor O’Connor - Mo Mháithrín - Romantic
Composed as a tribute to my late mother Eleanor O’Connor as a Christmas gift in 1988. Like some old harper’s patrons, she wanted to approve the piece I would have composed in her honour before her passing. And, she loved it!

CD O'Neill's Harper.   Sheet music   Sheet music download   Download CD track  

4003 - Bright New Morning - (Solo version, composed 1993) - Festive
Original setting of this piece that was composed as a ‘celebration of accommodation’: the embracing of ‘difference’ and the challenging of prejudice in Northern Ireland at the time…. It is a mix of traditional (usually associated with the Catholic community) and classical music (usually associated with the Protestant community); between a jig and a reel (in 7/8 and 13/8 time).

Available on CD The Belfast Years and  CD A Christmas Collection   Sheet music   Sheet music download   Download CD track

4004 - Walk in Belfast - (Solo version, composed 1994) - Romantic
Originally titled ‘Walk on Cave-hill’ the plateau hill overlooking Belfast city, while walking one sunny Spring Sunday morning during very sad times in Belfast’s history. Starting in a more ‘traditional’ evocation, it is followed by a more ‘in tempo’ interpretation which, in the Ensemble edition invites many players participation – while in the 3rd repeat of the main theme, there is an intricate descant….

Available on CD The Belfast Years and A Christmas CollectionSheet music   Sheet music download Download CD track. 

4005 - Journey into Exile & Suantrai  - (composed 1997) - Festive and Spiritual.
A combination of two instrumental pieces from the Colmcille Suite (that can be played separately or in sequence) – the first portraying the turmoil of exile with elements of ecclesiastic ‘organum’ (harmony moving in parallel) in a modern harp work. The second piece ‘Suantrai’ (originally titled ‘Suantrai for Daniel’, was originally conceived as a lullaby to comfort parents grieving the death of a child (composed for Janet’s brother Tony and wife Kathryn on the death of their baby Daniel) . The piece is build on a theme of birth and growth (stepping from the keynote D-E-F-G-A); enjoying a few moments of glory (signified by the C#) before dropping to the C natural below, then return to the earth before returning again in the cycle of life.

Available on CD  Sheet music Recorded on Colmcille.

4006 - Love’s Comfort, Love's Torment - (composed 1991) Modern, up-beat and romantic.
Composed while home-sick in America, pining for my new-wed husband – Recorded on Harpestry (Polygram)

Sheet music  

4007 - Yellow Man - (composed c.1980) - Modern, jazzy, upbeat.
A funky setting of an old Slide (type of jig) mostly as one voice throughout but using syncopation to decorative effect. First performed at Manchester Arts Festival in concert with only outing of the group ‘Celtic Strings’ with Kristen Nogues, Patsy Seddon and Mary McMaster (and Janet Harbison).

Available on the CD O'Neill's Harper  Sheet music  Download CD track.

4008 - Leap of Faith - (composed c.1997) - Modern, jazzy, upbeat.
Taking an old slip-jig to a new place (Whinney Hills of Leitrim) and taking a part of the first phrase to develop a second original slip-jig in the key of A …

Available on the CD By Strangford Water  Book By Strangford Water  Download CD track

4009 - Tribute to O’Neill - (composed 1985) - Modern march with variations
Janet’s first formal piece composed for a new works competition at the Dinan Festival International de l’Harpe Celtique, Brittany. To this point, Janet had not formally exposed any of her original works, always preferring to perform traditional music arrangements only, but the lure of a big money prize established a new departure… Originally titled ‘Tribute to a High King’ but renamed ‘Tribute to O’Neill’ when it was dedicated to the present Lord O’Neill of Antrim who patronised Janet’s first own-CD production (1985).

Available on the CD O’Neill’s Harper. Download CD track

4010 - Meditation for Absent Friends - (composed 1984) Air, perpetual motion.
Originally titled ‘For Basil’ as it was composed for Professor Basil Wilson, chairperson of the board of the Institute of Irish Studies at Queen’s University Belfast when I was a Research Fellow there (1984-6). He became a close friend and mentor who commanded a tune in the style of the old harpers. But tragically, I arrived at his home to deliver the new work minutes after he suddenly passed away – so the piece was first performed at his funeral. Rest in Peace Basil.

Available on the CD Prayer. Download CD track

4011 - Síle (Pronounced ‘Sheela’), (composed 1984) - Air
Composed for Sheila Campbell – Cunningham, one of Janet’s adult students who started harping as a therapy for a frozen shoulder – to become a close personal friend and fine harp teacher with her own school of harping (Lecale, Co.Down). The piece was composed for Sheila as a gift in the course of her studies with me – which she didn’t much like (!) but many other students have enjoyed it over the years! Set at Level 2 (Low Intermediate) standard.

Available on the CD O’Neill’s Harper.  Download CD track.

4012 - The Deer’s Cry - Air, Spiritual
2 pieces in one: instrumental solo and voice and harp)
One of Janet’s very early voice and harp compositions that became newly popular after it was published. It is an original setting of part of ‘St Patrick’s Breastplate’ (‘Christ with me, Christ before me…) in Irish. Also arranged as instrumental harp duet.

Available on the CD BHO in Concert & Downpatrick Download sheet music

4013 - Autumn Waltz - (composed 2002) - Waltz
Composed for Janet’s Aunt Marian’s 80th birthday and a great family gathering at my mother’s home in county Kerry. This has a tune that sways through octaves and is not uncomplicated… as was the lady herself!

 Available on the CD and Book Honor and Glory.

4014 - Kyrie - (Solo version, composed 2011) - Air, Spiritual
Initially intended to be a choral mass but the harp solo version of the Kyrie won favour with all who heard it – But, it is also featured in the work Brian Boru, Lion of Ireland in it’s choral form.

Available on the CD By Strangford Water and in Sheet music

4015 - St.John’s March - (composed 1983) - March
Something was composed for all my family weddings and this march was for a favourite cousin Tom Donaghy and his wonderful Anne who married in Kilkenny’s ancient St.John’s Church. The piece also exists as a duet or ensemble in 2 parts.

Available in Sheet music 

4017 - Easter Suite - (composed 2010) - Suite of airs and dance tunes
A suite of 6 pieces with the common theme of Easter:
Easter Snow (composed in southern Austria on Easter morning some years ago when it snowed and caked the cherry blossom)
Lily White (composed in memory of my husband’s mother whose name is the title and the piece as gentle as she.)
Baskets of Blossom (a playful reverie)
Easter Bonnet (a student piece composed in the 1980s, still popular
Bank of Primroses (a slipjig exploring a simple melodic shape…)
Easter Parade (a marching tune for the Easter Parade).

Available in Sheet music 

4018 - Fanfare for the President – Fanfeir an tUachtarain (Composed 2001) - Festive
A vibrant, modern Irish harper’s fanfare composed for President Mary McAleese on the occasion of the re-opening after restoration of the Medieval Hall in Magee College, Derry (part of the University of Ulster).

Available in Sheet music

4019 - By Strangford Water - (composed 2012) - Romance
Geographer Ronnie Buchanan, retired director of the Institute of Irish Studies (Queen’s University Belfast), was much loved and respected by his Research Fellows - and on the occasion of his 80th birthday, he made it known to us that he wished now to rest in his armchair to watch the tide ebb and flow in his beloved Strangford Lough - and wait for the geese in Spring. All of his former fellowes hosted a colloquium in his honour in Queen’s University and we all presented him with something representative of our life’s work - This was my contribution.

Available on the CD By Strangford Water  Download CD track   Sheet music  Music Book 


Catalogue of music

catalogue of janet Harbison music

Janet has a large body of published work available to buy in the shop

You can view and download the Catalogue here (Pdf 3.0 Mb) 

36 pages of Cd's; Music books; Scores and Tutor books. 
There is an order form to print off and send.

See Janet's growing collection of published work to buy.

This list will be added to so to keep up to date, bookmark this page and check the Pdf often!