It was lovely to see so many of you at John Carrington’s for the potluck! It would be great if that enthusiasm carries over to our next proposed event, a Harp Day in October with possibly some workshops, some harp circles, and maybe even a concert starring some of our local professional harpists! [See Bits and Pieces #4.] Keep an eye on future Resonances for more details. Got some ideas? Your input is invaluable!
Did you take your harp out somewhere and play during the Random Acts of Harping Day? I bet you had very appreciative audiences. Please let me know how it went!
Every summer I read advisories about not leaving your harp in the car when it’s hot. The general rule of thumb is: if it’s uncomfortable for you, it’s bad for your harp. A reflective cover is helpful to keep the sun from shining on it – camping goods stores have them and I saw some Heat Reflective Emergency Blankets online for $2.99! In the same vein, move your harp at home if it’s in a sunny window or in front of an air conditioner – temperature and humidity changes are not friends of the harp. [See Fun Stuff.]
I hope you’ll all have time for some rest and relaxation this summer! Joyce
Harp Jokes! What do you get if you cross a grizzly bear and a harp? A bear-faced lyre!
What do you call a cow that plays the harp? A moo-sician
Congrats to this Years Scholarship Winners!
Congratulations to Angie Kong and Prydwyn Goldman, who are this year’s winners of our chapter scholarship, announced at the chapter meeting! Angie, a student of Pat Wooster, will put her prize toward the eventual (soon, she hopes!) purchase of a pedal harp. Prydwyn, who studies with Susi Hussong, wants to increase her lesson time from a half to a full hour and to pay for her harp rental. Both girls are relative newcomers to the harp but have played other instruments, are progressing very quickly and see a golden future with the harp.
Juliet Stratton, How Did You Start the Harp?
￼￼I was fortunate to grow up in Bellevue, which at the time had a great school musicprogram. When I was in 5th grade, my school's elementary choir was selected to perform in the annual "All-City Music Festival" (held at the old Seattle Center Opera House). During the dress rehearsal, we got to listen to the other performers, one of which was a large harp ensemble of about 9 harps. I was completely mesmerized, especially when they played the jazz piece "Ten Past Two" by Pearl Chertok. I decided then and there that the harp was the instrument for me! Luckily, my sister played the viola at the Junior High, and she remembered seeing a little harp sitting unused in a practice room. She mentioned to her orchestra director that her little sister was thinking of playing the harp, and he was delighted to let us have it (rent free). Since the only harp teacher we had ever seen was the director of the festival ensemble, my mother tracked her down. The teacher was none other than Pat Wooster! She agreed to take me as a student, and the following year I performed "Ten Past Two" with her harp ensemble at the Seattle Opera House.
Congratulations to Pat and Jim Wooster!
Pat and Jim Wooster celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on June 21with a party on the lawn of their lovely house. Jim’s awesome surprise gift to Pat was to commission a new harp work, and he and their (Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra harpist) daughter Beth Wooster Colpean searched for a composer. They came up with two! G.R. Symphony oboist Alexander Miller wrote the stunning “Blind Date” for flute and harp, a piece filled with whirling wind and snow and commemorating Pat and Jim’s first date that was on the ski slopes. Kevin Kaska wrote “Gold Anniversary“, less evocative but still a lovely addition to the flute and harp repertoire. Beth says they are soon to be published. Pat’s longtime flute partner, Carol Wollenberg, and Beth and were the performers outside on the deck, and showed their professional chops after having had only one short and secret rehearsal together at chapter member Patti Warden’s home. Beth plans to perform both pieces in Grand Rapids soon and to record a CD for Pat and Jim (not for public distribution yet...). Janet Joy told Pat that the local (Tacoma) SAI chapter is sponsoring a concert of works by contemporary American Composers, and that either or both of these two pieces would be good candidates. “We’ll see,” cautions Jim.