Harp Instructors/Performers at The Harp Gathering, Folk Harp Festival
at the Sauder Village - Heritage Inn, Archbold Ohio!
Aislinn Gagliardi is a professional Irish harpist based in Chicago, and is well sought after as a performer, teacher and recording artist. Drawing from her background in Irish dance, and influenced by a diverse musical range from classical to Cape Breton, Aislinn’s distinct style shines through her music in an open and honest way. Known for her syncopated and melodic accompaniment, her compositions and arrangements offer a fresh perspective to the Irish music tradition.
Aislinn’s recently released debut solo harp album The Thin Place has been called “stunning, a monumental piece of work from a very talented and driven harper” and “for a first CD it’s a winner” (Jack Baker of Irish American News). This album blends popular traditional Irish tunes with those less commonly played, and features four of Aislinn’s own compositions including one with the album’s namesake. Joining Aislinn on select tracks are some of Chicago’s finest Irish musicians: Liz Carroll (fiddle), Teresa Shine (fiddle) and John Williams (concertina). Listen to a sample here.
Aislinn performs frequently at the Milwaukee Irish Fest and is a regular at traditional Irish music sessions in and around Chicago. She is on faculty at the Milwaukee Irish Fest School of Music, teaches workshops at the Old Town School of Folk Music, and has taught workshops at the Madison Folk Harp Society.
Join Aislinn’s her mailing list to be the first to hear about where she will be playing next at www.aislinnmusic.com.
Cass Jendzurski, creator of Guided Angels Ministry, is an inspiring and experienced musician and vocalist. She is a protege and graduate of the Therapy Harp Training Program (THTP), a performing member of the Artists Music Guild and a Certified Basic Cantor with the National Pastoral Musicians. She has presented workshops and sessions for health care professionals both at the state and national levels. For more on Cass visit her website at www.guidedangels.com
After many years of singing opera and classical music, Carol has now returned to her first love: playing the Celtic harp and singing the traditional songs of Scotland and Ireland. She specializes in the music of Scotland: traditional songs, songs of Robert Burns and songs in Scots Gaelic. Carol goes to Scotland twice a year to study Gaelic language and song at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig on the Isle of Skye. She is the winner of many awards from the Scottish Harp Society of America and the Great Lakes Regional and the US National Scottish Mòd. She teaches and performs around the Midwest and in Scotland. She is a frequent contributor to The Folk Harp Journal and has published several books of compositions and arrangements. Check out Carol’s web page at www.carolkappus.com where you can see videos, hear recordings and purchase her books.
Kim Robertson is a performer, composer and recording artist who has stretched the boundaries of the harp for a new generation of performers and music lovers. As a pioneer in the American folk harp movement, she combines an innovative style with a keen sense of melody and passion for tradition. Born in Wisconsin, she is classically trained on piano and Orchestral harp. In the mid-70's, Kim's discovery of the Celtic harp grew into a profound love for the instrument, setting her upon the path of exploration for which she is now widely known. She regularly tours the USA, Canada and Europe, and is recognized as one of the most popular lever harpists performing today. www.kimrobertson.net
Cynthia Shelhart, an American harper from northwest Indiana, performs, teaches and publishes traditional and contemporary music for double-strung harp. After receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in music and German from Ball State University in 1985, Cindy studied pedal and historical harp with Nan Gullo Richmond and lever harp with Elizabeth Cifani. In 2005, Cindy released her solo double-strung harp CD Limberlost Angel, and later that year won the US National Scottish Harp Championship and Travel Scholarship. Her newest CD release is That Night in Bethlehem, a holiday collection for solo harp (2009). In addition to solo concerts, Cindy performs and judges SHSA competitions at Highland Games and Scottish festivals throughout the United States, including Stone Mountain (GA), Glasgow (KY), the Texas Scottish Festival, and the Ohio Scottish Games. Highlights of her freelance performances include receptions for Welsh bass-baritone Bryn Terfel and Irish author Morgan Llewellyn, and an impromptu wedding duet with Scottish singer-songwriter Donovan. She teaches privately in Chesterton, Indiana, and is in national demand as a festival clinician. A leading authority in double-strung harp performance and pedagogy, Cindy is author of the first method book for double-strung harp, Make Mine a Double (book/CD, 2008). Her repertoire collection, Tunes to Go: 400 Tunes in Lead Sheet Format for the Harp (2003), has become a standard among harpers and harp ensembles of all levels. Website: www.cynthiashelhart.com
TAPESTRY features Denise Grupp-Verbon on Folk Harp and Michael Grupp-Verbon on Acoustic Guitar and Vocals. Performing together for 16 years, TAPESTRY has released three CDs, "Variations," "The Journey" and "The Red Leaf." TAPESTRY has performed for the Somerset Folk Harp Festival (New Jersey and California), the Florida Harpers and Friends Festival, It's Friday at the Toledo Museum of Art, the Chapel Concert Series (Monroe, MI), the Epworth United Methodist Concert Series (Toledo, OH), the Fayette (Ohio) Historical Opera House Artist Series, and Sights and Sounds (Chelsea, MI). They appear regularly for "Vineyard Adventures" at the Toledo Zoo; "Lunch in the Park" in Bowling Green, Ohio and for "Friday Night Live" at the Ritz Theatre in Tiffin, Ohio.
Denise’s harp journey began at age 11, studying privately for several years with Peoria Symphony Principal Harpist, Marjorie Winters, and continuing with Chicago Symphony Principal Harpist, Edward Druzinsky. After earning a Masters Degree in Harp Performance from Northwestern University, she began working as a free-lance musician in the Northwest Ohio area. Denise performs on both lever and pedal harp and is a highly sought after clinician with a thriving private teaching studio. Students travel as far as 2 hours away to study with her and she also uses technology to teach students over the internet. Her publications include arrangements for both harp solo and harp ensemble, and she has developed several instructional books and a DVD for both lever and pedal harp. Denise is an Adjunct Music Instructor at Owens State Community College, where she teaches Music Theory I and II, Piano I and II, Piano for Majors, Music Business I and II, along with other assorted music courses. In 2005-2006 Denise was awarded Adjunct Teacher of the Year by the Ohio Association of Two-Year Colleges.
Michael began his music career as a teen, playing drums and percussion in a weekend variety show in Toledo, Ohio. Upon graduation from high school he enlisted in the United States Army, serving part of his enlistment as a percussionist in the U.S. Army Band. While in service he started a degree program focusing on computer science, and after his discharge from the military, he successfully completed several degrees and certifications in computer technology. All along, he has continued to stay active in the music industry, either as a performer or as a sound and lighting technician. Always having played guitar, Michael returned to school, taking college level music courses, as well as attending workshops with such prominent fingerstyle guitarists as Don Ross, John Gorka, and most notably, Grammy Award Winning "DADGAD" fingerstyle guitarist, Al Petteway. Michael continues to travel to Al’s home studio regularly, to study privately with him. He actively composes and arranges much of the material recorded and performed by TAPESTRY.
Denise and Michael are the proud founders and directors of The Harp Gathering; celebrating our 10th year!
Harper Tasche holds a unique and prominent place in the folk harp world, as an award-winning performer and composer, recording artist, teacher, and author. Best known for his innovative work with the small harp, the cross-strung harp, and the Renaissance bray harp, he delights and inspires concert and festival audiences, harp players, and harp builders throughout the United States, Canada, and abroad.
Based in Seattle, Harper creates a distinctive and exceptionally expressive sound which blends traditional Nordic and Celtic music with classical, historical, and contemporary styles. He is a regular headliner at major international folk harp events, and his work has been heard and seen throughout North America and Europe on widespread radio and television broadcasts and in feature film. www.harpcrossing.com
For nearly 30 years Dave and Sharon Thormahlen have made their living creating music and musical instruments.
Dave has built over 1300 instruments, including guitars, mandolins and ukuleles. He graduated from Oregon State University with a master’s degree in Geology but decided music would be a better way of life.
Sharon has published 13 books of harp music and teaches harp in her Corvallis studio. She is on the board for ISFHC (International Society of Folk Harpers and Craftsman), which is the organization that puts out the Folk Harp Journal. Sharon graduated from Chico State in California and was a teacher for the Head Start program for 17 years. She has played guitar since she was 12 and played bass in The Swing Beans (a swing band) with Dave and two others before learning to play the harp. They recorded two albums, and now, Sharon and Dave have a new CD called Live From the Harp Shop. www.thorharp.com / thorharpdotcombo
Frank began playing the harp as an adult. After playing the harp for only 5 years, he competed and won Second Prize in the Lyon & Healy International Jazz and Pop Harp Competition, Lever Harp Division. For the past 10 years, he has been guest clinician and performing artist at various harp festivals and conferences throughout North America including Beginning in the Middle (VA), Harp Gathering (OH), Harpfest (MI), Harp Feste (FL), Harp Happenings (IL), Harp Journeys (TX), Neosho River Harp Festival (OK), Northern Lights Harp Festival (Ottawa, Canada), Somerset Folk Harp Festival (NJ), and Southeastern Harp Weekend (NC).
Since moving to Winston-Salem, NC in 2009, he has performed on several occasions with the Winston-Salem Symphony, Greensboro Symphony, and the Piedmont Wind Symphony. In 2010, Frank was commissioned to write an arrangement for the American Youth Harp Ensemble. In 2014, he was commissioned to write an original composition for harp and hand bells for New Philadelphia Moravian Church in Winston-Salem, NC.
He has recorded four harp CDs and two piano CDs. As a Gospel Jazz harpist, he is in demand performing in churches all over the country. As a jazz harpist, he has performed on various Rock, Jazz, Gospel, New Age, Folk, Christmas, and Sacred recording projects. He has published more than 70 hymn arrangements, ensembles, and original compositions for pedal and lever harp through his music publishing company, Chiera Music (www.frankvoltz.com). His music has been recorded by other harpists around the world. Frank's currently on the Board of Directors for the Piedmont Chapter of the American Harp Society. www.frankvoltz.com