What do I Teach?
I teach all aspects of harp technique along with a general knowledge of music. I teach both Salzedo and Grandjany methods of playing the harp. My teaching includes music theory, ear training, sight reading, improvisation, and arranging music for the harp.
How do I Teach?
Each lesson includes harp solos, technical exercises, and an overview of music concepts as it applies to each lesson. Together we work toward short and long-term goals with an emphasis on musical expression and technique, in a creative process. I integrate music theory, sight reading, and ear training with each lesson.
What Level of Musical Ability do I Teach?
I love teaching beginners as well as advanced students. The creative process on every level is always rewarding!
What Ages do I Teach?
Private students begin harp instruction as early as five years old. My oldest adult students are in their 90’s, with every age in between! Five-year old students do remarkably well. I provide small harps that are designed for their small size. Parents are always welcome to attend each lesson.
Where do I Teach?
My teaching studios are in San Francisco, the Peninsula, and the East Bay. My Remote harp lessons are taught on Zoom.us.
What is My Teaching Experience?
I have been teaching harp for 40 years. In addition to my private teaching studios, I am on the music faculties of California State University East Bay, Mills College, the Golden Gate Philharmonic Youth Orchestra Academy, and the San Francisco School of the Arts.
What is My Harp Pedagogy Training?
My teachers include Juilliard Professor Nancy Allen, Principal Harpist of the New York Philharmonic, Phia Berghout, Principal Harpist with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam, Susann McDonald, Professor Emeritus at Indiana University-Bloomington and former Chair of the Harp Department at the Juilliard School of Music, Wenonah Govea, California State University East Bay.
What is My Goal as Your Teacher?
I want everyone to learn the harp. It is an extraordinary instrument and is the only string instrument of the orchestra that can play beautiful melodies with rich chordal harmonies. The possibilities are endless!
It is important for me to understand each student’s harp desire and help facilitate that goal. I suggest harp solos and technical exercises (etudes) for each appropriate level for every lesson. Harp solos enhance performance skills and technical exercises establish and reinforce proper hand technique.
All these skills enhance the student’s ability to play. My students enjoy music and are continuously motivated to learn. My holistic approach to teaching allows each student to flourish, building upon their strengths and learning new musical concepts along the way.
What Repertoire Do I Teach?
I focus on each student’s goals, musical experience, and desired style of music. I teach both types of harps: lever and pedal. I am classically trained, and I teach classical harp repertoire as well as Celtic, Folk, Jazz, Pop, Gospel and orchestral training. My students learn to read charts (theory of chordal harmony), sight read, play by ear, and adapt all types of music to the harp (arranging).
What Harp Technique do I Teach?
Every hand is different. However, we each approach the harp with its vertical strings. I facilitate this challenge by custom designing each student’s technique, depending on the individual hand.
I specialize in both Grandjany and Salzedo methods. These are the two established schools of classic harp technique. This is a unique aspect in my teaching approach since most harp instructors only teach one method. My extensive training in both methods allows my students a custom-made approach, utilizing the best of each method for each individual set of fingers. I focus on hand differences and I adjust each hand position for the best result.
How do My Students Find a Harp?
I have several different sizes and models of harps for rent, including both pedal and lever harps.
What About Student Performances?
My students showcase their work in performances as soloists and in ensembles with other students for our spring and winter student recitals. Many of my longer-term students perform in youth orchestras and in chamber music ensembles throughout the Bay Area. I am a harp coach for youth orchestras in San Francisco, Oakland, and the Peninsula.
What About Student Competitions?
I provide venues for my students to compete. Several of them perform for the Junior Bach Society Competition. I reinstated the Inez Stafford Harp Competition for Northern California as President of the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of the American Harp Society. I served as adjudicator for student competitions at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, the San Francisco School of the Arts, and at Indiana University School of Music. I am an active coordinator and liaison with the American Harp Society national competitions.
How Long Are Private Harp Lessons?
I work with your schedule. Lessons range from 30 minutes to one hour, weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly. Weekly intervals are preferable for progressive learning.