The only thing better than an impressively talented harp player is two impressively talented harp players. And Camille and Kennerly Kitt, America’s twin sister harpists, deliver on every aspect of this.
The mesmerizing musicians, who live in the forests of Northern Illinois, are both classically trained with Bachelor of Music degrees in Harp Performance. But after developing their own expressive style, the girls chose to focus more on rock, metal, and, in striking contrast, Nordic Celtic music which ties in heavily with their Norwegian heritage.
Though many of their tracks are originals, the Harp Twins have covered a great list of recognisable titles, such as Metallica’s song, “One”. Originally written in November 1987 by James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich, it was ranked the eighth greatest heavy metal song of all time in a 2011 poll held by the guitar company, Gibson.
Camille and Kennerly’s rendition of the song, released on their YouTube channel six years ago, sees them perform together with a single harp. Their beautiful interpretation of the 34-year-old song is captivating (as well as slightly creepy in the fallen building!) And the video has so far reached 243k likes.
Fans reached out on YouTube to compliment the twins, with one saying, “Absolutely stunning performance. I just subscribed and can't wait for more.” Another exclaimed, “Wow ! That was fantastic, now I got to binge watch the rest of your channel !” And with more than 140 million views across their YouTube videos, the Harp Twins are the most recognizable harp duo in the world.
Other hits include their cover of “Songbird” by Fleetwood Mac (for which they’ve just released the new music video), Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon & Garfunkel, and even the Christian hymn, “Amazing Grace”, which was first written in 1772 by John Newton.
The Kitt sisters, who were born in 1998, began chasing their musical dream early, learning the piano as young children and moving to the harp in junior school. They used money from babysitting and dog walking jobs to pay for their first second-hand harp, which allowed them to fall in love with the instrument and later graduated from Wheaton College Conservatory of Music.
They’ve since achieved a huge amount of success, touring worldwide and headlining numerous concerts, festivals, and conventions, including the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Celebration. In October 2014 (and again in 2016), the twins represented the United States in the annual World Harp Festival in Asunción, Paraguay. This event hosts not only incredible talent, but also a range of workshops and masterclasses, in which the twins shared their musical knowledge.
But the stardom doesn’t stop there, with famous faces such as Billy Idol, Bear McCreary (composer for The Walking Dead music), and German symphonic folk metal band, Equilibrium, sharing the twin’s music across their own social media pages.
These unconventional harpists have taken a massively underrated instrument and used it most phenomenally. Their alternative take on some of the most iconic songs, along with original tracks, is fascinating. And we can’t wait to see what they do next!