Lucy Nolan began studying the harp at the age of seven with Eira Lynn Jones after being inspired when it was featured in an episode of the children’s television show, Teletubbies. After graduating from Oxford University in 2013 with a BA in Music, she continued to study for a Masters in Performance in which she achieved a Distinction.
During her time at Oxford she was awarded the Margaret Irene Seymour Award, the Archibald Jackson Prize for outstanding postgraduate results, an Alice Horsman Scholarship and the Oxford Philomusica Young Artists’ platform. She was subsequently awarded an entrance scholarship from the Royal Northern College of Music for an Advanced Postgraduate Diploma in Performance in which she achieved a Distinction.
Lucy’s work to date has been eclectic and ranges from giving solo recitals and performing Handel's Harp Concerto with New Chamber Opera to appearing on Hollyoaks performing her arrangement of Abba’s ‘I do, I do, I do’ and ITV’s drama, Victoria. As well as featuring in performances for BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio 4, Lucy has had the honour of working with many inspirational musicians including, Sir Mark Elder, Markus Stenz, Gabor Takacs Nagy and Ian Bostridge and has performed in renowned music venues such as Cadogan Hall, The Sage, Bridgewater Hall and Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts.
Lucy is a keen orchestral player and has enjoyed freelancing with professional orchestras such as the Hallé and Northern Sinfonia. She recently worked with Manchester Sinfonia to record a CD featuring works for string orchestra and harp and was invited to be principal harpist for the newly formed ProYouth Philharmonia. She currently holds the reserve place for the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s Future Firsts Scheme and whilst at the RNCM she was selected to participate in the BBC Philharmonic’s competitive orchestral placement scheme. In 2017 she toured with the European Union Youth Wind Orchestra in Luxembourg, Germany and the Netherlands. As well being part of the orchestra in residence for the World Music Championship in Kerkrade, they were invited to perform at the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles’ International Conference.
Lucy is particularly interested in helping to develop new music for the harp and was invited to work closely with the composer, Paul Patterson, to prepare his solo work, Armistice, for a performance at the World Harp Congress in Hong Kong. She also gave the European premiere of his harp duet, ‘Scorpions’, as part of the Chroma Harp Duo, a piece for which they were awarded first prize in the ensemble class at the Camac Harp Competition in London and the UKHA prize for the best performance of a work by a British composer.
She is a founding member of the contemporary music group, SHOAL, who were selected to work with the Norwegian composer, Eyvind Gulbrandsen, as part of a Moving Classics project. They have since enjoyed working with a variety of composers and have premiered new works at a number of events, including New Music North West Festival, Bury Light Festival and Hull City of Culture. Most recently they were invited to compose and record music for a short film for Channel 4.
Lucy also enjoys collaborating with the singer, Supriya Nagarajan for Manasamitra, an arts organisation specialising in delivering a range of South Asian arts in innovative ways. They have performed at Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival and for the Archbishop of Canterbury at Lambeth Palace and are looking forward to performances at The Sage, Gateshead later this year.
Lucy is passionate about bringing classical music to a wider audience. She worked closely with staff and patients at the Intensive Care and High Dependency Units at Blackpool Victoria Hospital, performing and introducing them to a variety of harp music in a study measuring the impact of music in hospitals. She spent two years working at a school in North London as part of the Teach First Leadership Development Programme where she helped to establish an orchestra and secured positions and funding for 5 pupils in the National Orchestra for All, rehearsing with them in preparation for performances at Alexandra Palace and Leeds Arena. She is an enthusiastic teacher and has been awarded a Leverhulme Scholarship for her work as a harp tutor for the Junior RNCM department and RNCM Young Harps’ Scheme. As well as having a number of private pupils, she is currently the harp tutor for Uppingham School and the Transpennine Branch of the Clarsach Society.
Lucy is grateful to the WM & BW Lloyd Charity Trust, Rotary Club of Darwen, Hilda Clarke Memorial Trust, John Frederick Leach Trust and RNCM Scholarship who have helped to fund her studies.