Saturday is the fourth annual National Harp Day - Lá na Cruite - and organisers are determined to forge ahead with their latest celebration of the old instrument despite the many restrictions in their way.

The event coincides with the 350th anniversary of the birth of the famous harper and composer from the north-west Turlough O'Carolan who inspired generations of musicians with his work.

Due to Covid-19 restrictions, participants cannot gather in numbers to display their craft so will instead be taking part remotely, thanks to a "harpers' call" which went worldwide.

"Harp Day came about as the brainchild of Cruit Éireann, which started four years ago, and it's gone from strength to strength," Aileen Kennedy of Cruit Éireann said.

"It's gone from National Harp Day this year to International Harp Day," she added.

National Harp Day was initiated to promote the national instrument, showcase manufacturers and players, and encourage more people to learn to play.

Video clips have been submitted to the organisers in recent weeks and all of the remote performances will be going online on Saturday and Sunday.

The performances have been submitted from Russia to Switzerland, Scotland to the United States and England to Australia.

There will also be performances from historic locations in Ireland including the National Museum of Ireland - Country Life in Co Mayo, Lissadell House in Co Sligo. Athenry in Co Galway, and the Glór Arts Centre in Co Clare.

Chair of Cruit Éireann Aibhlín McCrann said they had a "wonderful response" from harpers and they look forward to shining a spotlight on the work and legacy of Turlough O'Carolan.

Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, the Gaeltacht, Sport and Media Catherine Martin congratulated Harp Ireland and all of the harpers participating this year.

"I know the circumstances have been challenging. Your commitment is testament to the love for this tradition and I think you for sharing it with us," she said.

"While there can never be a substitute for the experience of a live performance, the presentation of work online creates an opportunity for the events to be accessed on a global scale and indeed revisited and enjoyed again," Ms Martin added.

The first video will be uploaded on Saturday at 7am.