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The 30,000 Foot View: Letting Go of the Details

Jul 12, 2021
This post was first published on April 27, 2015. Updated on July 12, 2021.

Are you practicing the big picture, or do you get stuck in “the dots?”

Sometimes you can be standing so close to something that you can't actually see it. You just don't have the right perspective.

I have always enjoyed short air flights on the small commuter-type planes. You're low enough that you can see...

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How to Spring Back Into Performing - and Love It

May 17, 2021

The spring weather has been wonderful here this year. We’ve had plenty of sunshine, a little early warm weather and just enough rain to encourage all the trees and shrubs to flower extravagantly. It’s a gift to be able to get outside and enjoy the beauty.

Of course, not all the plants around my house are growing where I want them. Between the weeding, pruning and replanting, there...

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The Harp: Queen of the Drama But Not a Drama Queen

Feb 08, 2021

Whether you are a harpist or just a lover of the harp, you know the magnetic power of the sound of this magnificent instrument. The harp can sound rich and fluid, or sparkling and elegant. The harp can be delicate or dynamic or even heroic. This vast color palette makes listening to the harp endlessly fascinating and playing the harp an exciting adventure.

Composers also enjoy exploring the...

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How to Make Virtual Concerts Virtually Stress-free

Dec 21, 2020

By this time many of us have played the harp online for friends, family, or in more structured performances. If you have already made your internet debut, you have probably experienced some of the challenges unique to online concerts. While Zoom or any other platform may be the only way to play and hear live music safely right now, virtual concerts have a unique set of challenges that can...

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What To Do Now: Making Music in Interesting Times

Mar 23, 2020

There’s a saying known as the “Chamberlain Curse” that has a new significance these days: May you live in interesting times. It speaks directly to where we are now across the globe.

For many of us, these times feel less interesting than confusing, discouraging, overwhelming and frustrating. I take heart, however, knowing that this is a unique opportunity for us as musicians to...

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5 Ways to Celebrate Harp-y Holidays

Dec 02, 2019

There’s nothing like “harp” for the holidays. 

That’s not quite how the song goes, but it is certainly true that no instrument seems more suited to Christmas celebrations than the harp. Choirs sing of the ”angels bending near the earth to touch their harps of gold,” and carolers remind us to “strike the harp, and join the chorus.” ...

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What’s Your SPF- String Protection Formula?

Jul 22, 2019

Summertime. Time for lemonade, swimming pools, barbecue, the beach and…breaking strings.

Where I live in central Pennsylvania, we have beautiful summers, much of the time. We have beautiful days when the sun shines and the air is so clear it almost shimmers. Then there are the days when the humidity is as high as the temperature. The outside air is muggy and heavy, so heavy it even seems...

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Don’t Want to Perform? 3 Reasons You Should

Jul 15, 2019

“A bell's not a bell 'til you ring it - A song's not a song 'til you sing it - Love in your heart wasn't put there to stay - Love isn't love 'til you give it away!”

― Oscar Hammerstein, II, lyrics from “Sixteen Going On Seventeen” from The Sound of Music

 

If there’s one statement that always furrows my brow, it’s this one: “Oh, I don’t want...

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Grins and Grimaces: Putting on Your Concert Face

Feb 11, 2019

The close-up of the soloist reveals the look of intense concentration on her face. The performer’s total commitment to the music is visible in her closed eyes and slightly furrowed brow. There is strength and beauty in her expression.

A quick ramble through YouTube videos will reveal a wide variety of “concert faces.” Some of the most remarkable will be found in videos of live...

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My 2019 Designed: How I Put It All Together

Jan 07, 2019

Welcome to 2019! I love a new year. It feels like a beautifully wrapped present with your name on it, just waiting for you to open it. What might be inside??

If you’ve been following the last few blog posts, you’ve learned the steps to designing your 2019, to setting goals and creating a plan to achieve them. The process we have used is a little untraditional and whimsical, and I...

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