2015 Presenters will be announced January 1, 2015:
Here's who we had last year

  Rhett Barnwell
  Debbie Brewin-Wilson
  Cynthia Cathcart
  Mike Connors
  Stephanie Curcio
  Jaque Davison
  Sarah Deere-Jones
  Brenda Dor-Groot
  Edie Elkan
  Gloria Galante
  Martha Gallagher
  Melinda Gardiner
  Maeve Gilchrist
  Gerald Goodman
  Robbin Gordon-Cartier
  Dennis Gormley
  Rachel Hair
  Gráinne Hambly
  Therese Honey
  Nancy Hurrell
  William Jackson
  Liza Jensen
  Kathy Kasley
  Beth Kollé
  Lynne Lapidus
  Sabine Meijers
  Sam Milligan
  Alfredo Rolando Ortiz
  Ray Pool
  Meg Robinson
  Kim Robertson
  Gerry Serviente
  Maureena Spadaro
  Sunita Staneslow
  Tomoko Sugawara
  Sharon Thormahlen
  Clotilde Trouillaud
  Dennis Waring
  Karla Williams


Can't make it to Somerset?
You Gotta Have Harp invites you to the
Harpers' Escape Weekend
October 2-4, 2015



Rhett Barnwell

Musical fluency characterizes Rhett Barnwell, who is at ease playing organ, cello, piano and French horn as well as classical and lever harp. His musical focus, no matter what instrument he is playing, composing or conducting, is on music for sacred, healing and meditative purposes. Within that primary focus he has made a special study of Gregorian chant. Rhett has toured with solo sopranos Victoria Lawson and Claire Teuber, has performed and taught at a wide variety of festivals, including Spoleto, and has served on the Board of Trustees of the Historical Harp Society and CD review editor for the Folk Harp Journal. He has many CDs and books available as well as his entrepreneurial venture (with Julianne Ford and Coralie Olszta) Harp Couture – a division of Seraphim Music that offers a line of fashions and accessories for the harp. Somerset is happy to collaborate with Rhett this year to bring his Liturgical Harp Conference to the festival, consoliidating dates and logistics to broaden the horizons for both our loyal supporters and bringing these two worlds together for one dynamic weekend.

Performer website: Seraphim Music

Level: Any Type: service When: Thurs. 5-5:30pm  More Info

Getting a Handel on Harp
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Sat. 3:30pm  More Info

Harp As a Sacred Instrument
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Thurs. 10-11am  More Info

Liturgical Year, Sacred Events and Repertoire
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Thurs. 2:30-3:30pm  More Info

Joy of Bach
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Fri. 9:30am  More Info

Playing for Church without Losing Your Religion
Level: Any Type: Lecture When: Sat. 9:30am   More Info

Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Fri. 1:30pm   More Info

Debbie Brewin-Wilson

“My Muse, tho' hamely in attire, May touch the heart." said Robert Burns. There is nothing ‘hamely’ about Debbie’s artistry as a musician and singer, and the combination of these skills with her passion for Robert Burns results in music that echoes ‘the wood note wild’ as Burns describes the natural and unpretentious singing he liked best. An experienced performer and teacher, Debbie’s repertoire also includes many traditional Scots ballads and Scottish jigs, reels, and strathspeys as well. She is also an ordained priest in the Episcopal Church, her current congregation being in Maryland. To date, she has three solo CDs, Dream of Caledonia, Roots and Wings, and Love Came Down at Christmas, a mix of original and traditional songs. Cofounder, with Kathy DeAngelo of the Harper’s Escape (and co-author of the Escape tunebook, Ten Years of Tunes). Debbie has also published three song and harp arrangement collections: Burns for Bairns and Wood Notes Wild and her newest Harp of My King, a compilation of Celtic Tunes New & Old for Christian Worship, which also includes a CD companion.

Presenter website: Debbie Brewin-Wilson

Ancient Music, New Words
Level: Int. Type: Hands-on When: Sat. 1:30pm  More Info

Basically Beginning I, II, III
Level: Beg Type: Hands-on When: Fri., Sat. 9:30am Sun. 9am   More Info

Celtic Music for Church
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Thurs. 1:15-2:15pm   More Info

Celtic Morning Prayer Service
Level: Any Type: Lecture When: Sun. 8am   More Info

Level: Any Type: service When: Thurs. 5-5:30pm  More Info

Cynthia Cathcart

cynthia cathcart A visit to Cynthia’s superbly organized and informative web site will fill you with an instant desire to play the clarsach, the wire strung harp, of Scotland and Ireland. In lucid prose Cynthia presents herself with anecdotes and practical information as well as giving a taste of her teaching style in pieces on such topics as how harmonics work and how to handle accidentals on a lever-free harp. You can also listen to a selection of her playing which has been described as ‘Clear, pure and glistening… bell-like…’ and giving the ‘impression of very fine china.’ It is no surprise then to read of Cynthia’s multiple awards and accomplishments, among them being a two-time winner of U.S. National Scottish Harp Competition and recognition that she is one of the world’s foremost experts on the wire strung harp. Cynthia has recorded three CD’s, Alchemy of a Rose, Joy to the World and , Carols of Christmas. She has four books, including Pathway: A Primer for the Wire-Strung Harp (with separate recording), From my Music Stand, and Traditional Beginnings for the Celtic Harp .
Presenter website: Cynthia Cathcart

Harp Figures from the Welsh Tradition
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Fri. 9:30am   More Info

Self-made Performances
Level: Any Type: Lecture When: Sun. 9am   More Info

Welsh Rare Bit
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Fri. 1:30pm   More Info

Mike Connors

mike connors Mike Connors is the founder and director of the guitar and harp programs at Penn-Griffin School for the Arts, a grade 6-12 public school in Guilford County (Greensboro-High Point) North Carolina. He holds a master of music degree in classical guitar from University of South Carolina. He has won prizes in at least 15 harp competitions including a scholarship to the Ohio Scottish Arts School at Oberlin and the 2011 Scottish Harp Society of America’s travel scholarship to study in Scotland. Mike's love of harp led him to create a Celtic harp curriculum at Penn-Griffin, which allows students to receive honors credit. He has applied for and been awarded numerous grants to purchase harps for the classroom. His first CD Castles, Caves, and Stones; Scottish and Irish Music for Solo Harp was released in 2012.

Presenter website: Mike Connors

Striving & Thriving as a Musician
Level: Any Type: Lecture When: Fri. 3:30pm   More Info

Stephanie Curcio

stephanie curcioFew can claim as widely distinguished a harp career as Stephanie Curcio of New Hampshire, trained in both classical and lever harp. For her constant and steady career as a solo and orchestral musician, a teacher, lecturer and organizer of events, as well as an arranger and composer, her musical and artistic contributions were officially recognized by the state of New Hampshire in 2008. At Somerset Stephanie will be offering her expertise at reading and understanding musical notations, especially for the harp. Her publications and arrangements are too numerous to mention here so a visit to her a booth in the Vendor Mall is going to be a must. Don't forget to put time in your schedule to spend time in the Exhibit Hall.

Presenter website: Stephanie Curcio Publications

Basic Harp Ensemble 1
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Sat. 9:30am  More Info
Basic Harp Ensemble 2
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Sat. 1:30pm  More Info

Psychology of Teaching
Level: Beg Type: Hands-on When: Sun 9am   More Info

Develop & Improve Your Sight-Reading Skills
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Fri. 3:30pm  More Info

Jaque Davison

jaque davisonJaque Davison is the owner of Davison Associates which builds virtual-reality worlds using ActiveWorlds software. Mr. Davison has thirty years experience in 3D construction and virtual worlds. He completed award-winning projects for the U.S. Army, Florida Central University and private businesses. He also creates virtual worlds for training and education. He is heavily involved in developing information management techniques strongly integrating content on the Web with 3-D environments. This is his third year presenting at Somerset on a virtual harp world that he has created as a resource for harpists. He is a harp student and, for the last seven years, studies with Nanette Gibbs in Alexandria Virginia.

Wide World of Harp on the Web
Level: Any Type: Lecture When: Fri. & Sat. 12:30-1:15pm  More Info
Sarah Deere-Jones

sarah deere-jonesSarah comfortably straddles both the classical and folk harp worlds. After leaving the Royal Academy of Music and doing stints with the Bournemouth Symphony, BBC Symphony, and Ulster Orchestra, among others, she began exploring medieval music in 1997 with her husband Phil, with whom she performs. They have both been involved with research into the medieval history of the harp and bagpipe in England. She is now director of the Cornwall Harp Centre. This is Sarah's first appearane at Somerset.

Presenter website: Cornwall Harp Centre

Cornwall's Celtic Connections
Level: Int.-Adv. Type: Hands-on When: Fri. 1:30-3pm   More Info

Creating an Arrangement
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Sun. 9-10:30am   More Info

Learn a Tune by Ear
Level:Beg. Type: Hands-on When:Sat. 1:30-3pm  More Info

The Medieval Harp in England
Level:Beg. Type: Hands-on When:Fri. 3:30-5pm  More Info

Brenda Dor-Groot (International Jazz Harp Foundation)

brenda dergrootijhfBrenda appears courtesy of the Jazz Harp Foundation and Camac Harps.
Brenda studied at Codarts/Classical music academy in Rotterdam with Teresia Rieu and Godelieve Schrama and at the Cologne Conservatory in Germany. Though she occasionally still performs classical music, since 2005 Brenda has been actively involved in the world of jazz harp. She co-founded with Sabine Meijers the Jazz Harp Foundation in 2007. She plays with Sabine in the duo 94 Strings and also with the violinist Sietse von Gorkom in the duo 51 Strings. She is now specializing in the Blues, which she performed at last summer's World Harp Congress. Her new band is Real Blues Harp Band. Not stopping there she is also developing a small solid body electric harp with metal strings and magnetic pickups specfically designed for playing the Blues. Brenda and Sabine brought the International Jazz Harp Foundation to Somerset for the first time in 2010 to promote its mission and this year they are appearing courtesy of their Foundation and are being sponsored by Camac Harps. You can find a table for the Jazz Harp Foundation in the Exhibit Hall.

Presenter website: Jazz Harp Foundation

Gear Up Your Harp
Level: Any Type: Hands-on When: Fri. 1:30pm   More Info

Jazz & Blues Demystified presented by Jazz Harp Foundation
Level: Int.-Adv. Type: Hands-on When: Thurs. 1-2:30pm  More Info

Jazz & Blues: Harping from Lead Sheets presented by Jazz Harp Foundation
Level: Int.-Adv. Type: Hands-on When: Thurs. 3-4:30pm  More Info

Jazz & Blues Harp Ensemble 1
Level: Int-Adv. Type: Hands-on When: Fri. 3:30pm  More Info

Jazz & Blues Harp Ensemble 2
Level: Int-Adv. Type: Hands-on When: Sat. 3:30pm  More Info

Jazz & Blues Take-Home Tunes
Level: Int-Adv. Type: Hands-on When: Sat. 1:30pm  More Info

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