"... harpist Anneleen Lenaerts displayed dynamic finesse, nuance in articulation and jaw-dropping skill ..." (Harvey Steiman for the Aspen Music Festival)
Recognized as one of the world’s leading solo and orchestral harpists, Anneleen Lenaerts was only 23 years old when she was appointed Principal Harpist of the Vienna Philharmonic, the eighth woman to be appointed in the orchestra’s 177 year history.
From an early age Anneleen won an impressive number of accolades, winning 17 prizes between 1997 and 2009 at international harp competitions in Belgium, France, Austria, Hungary, Spain, the USA and Germany, including the Grand Prix International Lily Laskine and the ARD International Music Competitions. She made her solo debut at venues including Wigmore Hall in London, Carnegie Hall in New York and Salle Gaveau in Paris.
As a soloist, Anneleen has performed with the Symphony Orchestra of Bavarian Radio, the Mozarteum Orchestra, the Philadelphia Chamber Orchestra, the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Collegium Musicum Basel, the Brussels Philharmonic, and the National Orchestra of Belgium.
A Warner Classic Artist, Anneleen's latest recording features works by Italian composer Nino Rota. The CD includes Rota’s Concerto for Harp and Orchestra, the Sonata for Flute and Harp, and numerous solo works.
Anneleen Lenaerts began her harp studies with Lieve Robbroeckx. She continued her training earning a Harp Master with highest distinction from the Conservatories of Brussels and Paris and completed the “Cours de perfectionnement" at the Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris with Isabelle Perrin.
Described by one critic as “a phenomenal harp player who can make her instrument ring with unparalleled purity,” Maeve Gilchrist has taken the Celtic harp to new levels of performance.
Born and raised in Edinburgh, Scotland, and currently based in Brooklyn, New York, Maeve’s innovative approach to her instrument stretches its harmonic limits and improvisational possibilities. She is as at home as a soloist with an internationally renowned orchestra as she is playing with a traditional Irish folk group or using electronic augmentation in a more contemporary, improvisatory setting,
Maeve has appeared at prominent music events including Celtic Connections in Glasgow, Tanglewood Jazz festival, the World Harp Congress in Amsterdam, and the opening of the Scottish Parliament. She has played with such luminaries as Esperanza Spalding, Tony Trishka, Ambrose Akinmusire, Solas and Darol Anger.
To date Maeve has released five albums, including her most recent recording Vignette, on Adventure Records, with Nashville legend Viktor Krauss, while on her own label, her solo Ostinato Project is a captivating exploration of the possibilities of the harp.
Maeve was the first lever harpist to join the faculty of Berklee College of Music in Boston as a member of the American Roots Program. She has written several instructional books published by Hal Leonard Music. Also an in-demand composer and arranger, Maeve premiered her first concerto for lever harp and symphony orchestra this year and is currently working on a number of commissions.
Well known and respected as both a classical and celtic harpist, Rhett Barnwell’s expertise and talent extend beyond the harp. He performs professionally on cello, French horn and organ as well as being in demand as a conductor, composer and arranger. Rhett specializes in performing and arranging inspirational music for the harp, focusing on music for healing, sacred and meditative settings. He recently joined the Harp Column Academy faculty as the Inspirational Music Specialist.
Rhett is the founder of Seraphim Music, specializing in music designed for use in church, hospitals, hospices, nursing homes and concert settings. Through Seraphim Music, which is distributed in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia and Asia, Rhett has gained international acclaim as a composer and arranger and continues to receive commissions for both new works and arrangements. “A Serenade for the Soul,” a compilation of traditional hymn arrangements, original compositions, and classical pieces, is used by harpists in therapeutic, sacred, and concerts performances around the world.
Mr. Barnwell has been a featured presenter and performer at harp festivals and conferences including the 2016 American Harp Society National Conference, 2017 AHS National Institute, Southeastern Harp Conference, Somerset Folk Harp Festival, Harp Journeys, Beginning in the Middle and Southern Harp Festival. He regularly facilitates workshops and concerts for American Harp Society chapters throughout the U.S. Since 2007, he has organized the biannual Liturgical Harp Conferences, which have drawn harpists from all over the country. He has also given concerts throughout the U.S., Ireland, and Italy. Rhett has served on the Board of Trustees of the Historical Harp Society, and as the CD Review Editor for the Folk Harp Journal.
American Youth Philharmonic Harp Ensemble
The American Youth Philharmonic Orchestras (AYPO) Harp Ensemble, under the direction of Elizabeth Blakeslee, has been performing in concert halls and community spaces throughout Northern Virginia since 2016. In their short history, the AYPO Harp Ensemble has grown to include 12 young harpists, ages 11-18. These harpists have performed works composed and adapted for Harp Ensemble including works by Carlos Salzedo, Bernard Andrès, Cindy Horstman and Julia Kay Jamieson. The AYPO Harp Ensemble rehearses weekly and presents three formal concerts per year in addition to more informal community concerts. More information is available at aypo.org
Mary Jane D’Arville
Mary Jane D’Arville, along with her husband David, is founder of the Virginia Harp Center and Atlanta Harp Center, East Coast harp resource centers with locations in Georgia, New Jersey and Virginia. For several years, Mary Jane was harp instructor at the University of Virginia and the University of Richmond, as well as serving as director of the Richmond Public Schools Harp Program.
Over the years, she has performed with several regional orchestras including the Richmond, Savannah and Charlottesville Symphony Orchestras as well as maintaining an active freelance career and teaching studio. In 2002, Ms. D’Arville performed with the Salzedo Ensemble at the World Harp Congress in Switzerland. She is a graduate of Carnegie-Mellon University where she received her MFA in Harp Performance.
Robbin Gordon-Cartier directs the harp program in the East Orange School District at the Cicely L. Tyson School of Performing and Fine Arts. She is a Concert Artist/Adjunct Harp Faculty member of Kean University in Union, NJ. Robbin has served as the 2nd Vice-President and Director at Large of the American Harp Society.
Mrs. Gordon-Cartier performs regularly in the New York metropolitan area with credits including appearances at Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall in New York City. Robbin is a Salvi Concert Artist and has presented a week of master classes and a concert at the French ambassador's residence in Bogota, Columbia for the Salvi Harp Foundation.
Maryland Classic Youth Harp Ensemble
The Maryland Classic Youth Harp Ensemble is directed by Monika Vasey Rhodes, and celebrates its 19th year, rehearsing at Strathmore Hall as part of the Maryland Classic Youth Orchestras. The harp ensemble has been invited to perform at numerous events including the Camac Harp Festival in Alexandria, VA, the Christopher Newport University Harp Festival, Maryland Day at Gildenhorn Recital Hall at the University of Maryland, The Kennedy Center Millennium Stage Concert Series, American Harp Society D.C. Chapter events.
The ensemble has been fortunate to receive coaching from artists such as Edmar Castaneda, Nikolaz Cadoret, Jacqueline Pollauf, and Sarah Fuller. Members of the ensemble perform regularly in MCYO orchestral ensembles and Young Artists of America, as well as attend prestigious summer programs such as Interlochen, Brevard, Curtis Summerfest Harp Colony, the American Youth Harp Ensemble Summer Institutes, and Young Artists Harp Seminar.