Listen up (I'm on my soap-box here) harpists have being doing pretty amazing things with the instrument for a very, very, very long time. Alice Coltrane (1937-2007) anyone? You just have to watch Harpo Marx (1888-1964) in action on YouTube to know that he was pretty awesome in his day, and is still awesome now!!
The harp does not need "re-inventing", nor is it a "girlie" instrument. There are plenty of guys out there playing harp.
It's a pretty damn cool instrument that can do rhythm, melody and bass and just about anything else you can think to do with it too. It's no longer unusual to see a harp in a band, and being played in just about every genre of music.
We don't need to re-invent the harp, we need to discover what is already out there.
(I'm off the soap-box now!)
I was blown away when I saw these videos of Zeena Parkins online. She is anawesome musician, doing some incredible things musically - it just happens to be on a harp. :-)
and here she is with the brilliant Björk
and here she is talking about contemporary music using graphic scores
and excerpt of piece with percussion