Raised in Greendale, Wisconsin, my classical music training began at the age of 3. Watching my sister take harp lessons quickly increased my desire to play the harp. Learning to read music while simultaneously learning to read words, I began studying piano with my mother and harp with Jeanne Henderson, of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. By the time I entered second grade, I was already playing with my elementary school orchestra, which typically only allowed fifth and sixth graders. After entering middle school, I played with the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra for several years.
At age 15, I played for my first wedding ceremony, and quickly established a solid clientele for weddings, banquets, receptions and other special occasions. During high school, I was twice selected as the principal harpist for the Wisconsin State High School Honors Orchestra. Additionally, I frequently played at Irish Fest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (as part of my harp instructor's ensemble), and performed as a soloist at the Rose Festival at Boerner Botanical Gardens (Hales Corners, Wisconsin), the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra Showcase House, and the Mitchell Park Domes (Milwaukee, Wisconsin).
While attending Albion College (Albion, Michigan), I received a music scholarship to play harp and piano in the Albion College Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Dr. James Ball. In 2003, I was one of three featured concerto contest winners with the Symphony, performing the Rondeau from Francois-Adrien Boieldieu’s Concerto for Harp. Throughout college, I also played with the Tecumseh Community Orchestra (Tecumseh, Michigan) and for Albion College theater productions. Additionally, I established a seasonal performance schedule with Milwaukee County-area (Wisconsin) churches during the Christmas holidays. After my college graduation, I was invited back to Albion College several times to play with the Symphony as well as joining the Tecumseh Community Orchestra for annual concerts.
I then relocated to Valparaiso, Indiana, to attend graduate school at Valparaiso University. Since completing my Master of Arts in Liberal Studies - concentration in History in December 2006, I have continued to perform for weddings, church services and special events in the Midwestern United States. Recent events include the 2012 Methodist Hospital Foundation's annual black tie gala and the 2013 Methodist Hospital Foundation coronation dinner.
Most recently, I was honored to be part of the March of Dimes Signature Chefs' Auction for the past three years, the 2013 and 2012 Summer Rhapsody Music Festival symphony orchestras, play with the LaPorte Symphony Orchestra, and be part of dozens of weddings and special events. In the past few years, I've also been featured in the press and regional wedding media (scroll down for details!). I am also a member of the Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce and the American Harp Society. Besides my musical activities, I completed my second Master's degree in Student Affairs and Higher Education in May 2014 and I am currently pursuing my Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership, anticipating completion in December 2020. I am starting a new position at the University of Illinois - Chicago as the Assistant Dean for Academic and Student Services in the Graduate College soon.
Today, I live in Valparaiso, Indiana, with my husband and our three children, while continuing to provide beautiful harp music for all occasions!
Find me on Facebook: facebook.com/timelessharpist