STUDENT EVALUATIONS PROGRAM Spring 2022
April 2nd, 2022: 1-5 pm (MT) Online Zoom Format
& May 7th, 2022: 1-5 pm (MT) Hybrid in Person/Online
We are excited to offer student evaluations with an online/in-person hybrid format.
See Updated Information Below.
These evaluations are held to help our Mile High Chapter Members improve their playing and musicianship. It is our hope that students (of all ages) will gain experience playing for and listening to others while receiving feedback from a guest advisor.
From The American Harp Society Website
"Auditions and Evaluations is an educational program for harp students sponsored by the American Harp Society, Inc.
Participants come specifically to be heard and to hear one another. Because this is a unique two-part program, there is
special focus on the improvement that can be made by participating on both days.
The word “audition” comes from the Latin [audio] which means “to hear.” We must not confuse our Harp Society “Auditions” with the more common usage of the word audition; for this is not a competition. On the first day, participants play pieces of their own choosing for an advisor and for one another. The advisor gives each student feedback on their performance. A performer’s worksheet or traditional theory test is given. On the second day of the program, about a month later, participants show their improvement by playing the same pieces again. Because this is not a competition, no prizes are given, however everyone who participates both days receives a Certificate of Participation from the Music Education Committee of the American Harp Society."
UPDATED INFORMATION ABOUT THE
2022 MILE HIGH CHAPTER
There will be two evaluations – The first will be held on April 2nd from 1:00 - 5:00 pm
and the second will be held on May 7th from 1:00 - 5:00 pm.
The first evaluation will be held in a completely virtual setting (as previous years)
and we will use the format found below. The second evaluation will be held in person at The Boulder Piano Gallery (in the recital hall), with an online hybrid option if participants do do not feel comfortable being in person due to Covid-19 concerns or travel hardships.
The Mile High Chapter member's health and safety has high priority and we want to respect everyone's comfort level with being in person.
1. For the evaluation, we are asking participants to submit a video recording of
one or two songs totaling no more than 5 minutes combined. Please send your unedited recording as either an .mov or .mp4 file to email@example.com. We would also like the student to announce the title of their song(s) before playing each piece in the video recording. The submission date for the video recording is March 30th by 11:59 p.m.
Additionally, please attach a pdf file of each song that the student is performing and be sure to put (Name) Student Evaluation Recording 1 in the subject line of the email. (If you do not own a scanner there are several apps that convert a picture taken with your cell phone to a pdf file.)
A few tips to help make your recording session go smoothly:
Don't worry if your performance isn't perfect. We want to hear the real you! To help take some of the pressure off, try recording the song several times and then use the best take of three.
Be sure to record your "practice" takes as well. Sometimes it is the recording that you are the happiest with as you are more relaxed.
Enlist a family member to help press record/stop. Also that family member can help to keep background noise to a minimum.
Dress for success! Sometimes wearing clothes that you would normally perform in can help get you in the zone.
Don't forget to give your harp a good tune up before recording!
Have fun and remember to breath.
2. On April 2nd participants will be assigned a time (about 15 to 20 minutes) to receive live feedback and work with the guest harp advisor in real time through Zoom. We encourage you to sign on to the Zoom meeting early or stay on after your assigned time to listen to at least one other student work with with the advisor. This is a wonderful opportunity to get to hear other harpists perform, learn something about their songs, and support one another. (Participants or their teachers are welcome to stay signed in for the entire Zoom session if they so desire.)
The Zoom meeting link and the assigned feedback time will be emailed out to the participants using the email provided when registering 24 hours prior to the event.
3. Students will receive written feedback from their assigned guest harp advisor based on the video performance. The students can then take this feedback to their teachers and they have the opportunity to work on incorporating the comments into their performance over the next month.
4. The second evaluation is scheduled for May 7th in person at the Boulder Piano Gallery. If the student participant has Covid concerns or traveling hardships they will follow the same format as listed above for the first evaluation.*See 4a for more info regarding online only for the second evaluation
For students participating IN PERSON on May 7th, we ask you to arrive 20 minutes before your scheduled performance time. There will be a pedal or lever harp available for you to play on, however if you feel more comfortable on your own harp you may bring it as well. Students will have the opportunity to play their music live for everyone and then receive additional feedback from your evaluator. The second evaluation will be of the same music in order to demonstrate improvement in performance and show mastery of the music. If possible we would like the songs performed from memory at the second evaluation.
The Mile High Chapter Board encourages participants to arrive early or stay after their assigned time to listen to at least one other student work with with the advisor. This is a great opportunity to show support for your fellow harpists and learn about other fun harp music you may want to learn as well!
*4a. Students will submit the second video recording of their songs by 11:59 p.m. on May 4th if the are doing the second Evaluation Virtually as well. The second recording will be of the same music in order to demonstrate improvement in their performance and show mastery of the music. If possible we would like the songs performed from memory at the second evaluation. The student will also receive additional feedback and comments the second day from our guest evaluators.
5. The registration fee is $15 dollars and students need to be current members of the local Mile High Chapter of the American Harp Society in order to participate. If you are not a member of the Mile High Chapter you can pay membership dues online and participate in this event and other events in the future. Space is limited, so be sure to register soon!
All students who complete both evaluations will receive a
Certificate of Participation from the American Harp Society, Inc.
Please register and pay online by clicking the event button below.
We are pleased to announce that our 2022 guest advisors will be
Kathryn Harms and Alaina Bongers!
See more information about our guest advisors below.
WHAT IF MY SONG IS NOT VERY LONG? (EXAMPLE UNDER 2 MINUTES)
Students are welcome to play more than one song for the evaluation. Just be mindful that the total performance time for all songs combined cannot exceed 5 minutes.
DO MY MUSIC SELECTIONS NEED TO BE” PERFORMANCE” READY?
No. As long as the music is out of the learning notes stage and can be played at a steady tempo it is expectable to play it as a piece in progress.
DO I NEED TO BRING MY HARP?
Not for the first evaluation as it will be held in an all virtual setting. We are able to hold the second evaluation in person and there will be a lever and pedal harp available for participants to play. You are welcome to bring your own harp instead for the second evaluation if you are more comfortable playing on it instead. We ask that if you are bringing a harp please arrive early to get your harp unloaded and possibly tuned, so we can stay on schedule.
DO I NEED TO BE AN AHS MEMBER TO PARTICIPATE?
Yes, you need to be a current member of our local Mile High Chapter to participate in the student evaluation program. Student Member ship dues are $15, regular membership dues are $20, and the registration cost is $15
IS THIS A COMPETITION AND WILL MY PERFORMANCE BE COMPARED TO OTHER PARTICIPANTS?
No. This is an opportunity to grow as a performer, gain more mastery of the music, learn from others, and support your fellow harpists.
Meet Our GUEST HARP ADVISORS
Kathryn Harms is a versatile performer and innovative teacher based in Boulder, CO. For the 2018/2019 season, she performed as acting principal harpist with the New Mexico Philharmonic, and she regularly appears as principal harpist with Opera Southwest and the Colorado Springs Philharmonic. In addition to her ensemble and solo performance endeavors, she maintains a private teaching studio and is passionate about imparting her love of music to students of all ages and backgrounds.
An avid promoter of new music, Harms regularly collaborates with composers to encourage quality and inventive composition for the harp. In 2015, she was a recipient of an American Harp Society, Inc. grant to commission a chamber piece for harp and string quartet: I ran out of black paint and sunshine by Kurt M. Mehlenbacher. She was a soloist at the Society of Composers, Inc. 2018 National Convention, and she was also a featured performer in a concert titled “Collaboration, The Heart of Innovation” at the 2019 AHS National Institute.
Harms received her Master of Music degree from the University of Colorado Boulder as a student of Janet Harriman, and her Bachelor of Music degree from Ball State University as a student of Elizabeth Richter. Originally from Williamsburg, VA, Harms was given the opportunity to begin harp instruction through a rare public school program led by Cynthia Campbell.
Alaina Bongers is a native of Colorado and can be found most weekends driving up and down the Front Range to performances and harp functions. Alaina received both her Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees in Harp Performance from Colorado State University under Rachel Starr Ellins. She also holds a certificate in Liturgical Studies which she earned studying with Dr. Joel Bacon, organ professor at Colorado State University.
Alaina is the principal harpist for the Fort Collins Wind Symphony and has played with many other ensembles including Longmont Symphony, Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra, Boulder Symphony, Arapahoe Philharmonic, Ladaumus Chorale, Loveland Chorale, Larimer Chorale, and Alpine Chorale. In addition to ensemble work, Alaina has a passion for musical theater and has worked on productions with the Fort Collins Children’s Theater, Up in Lights, Midtown Arts Center, Opera Wyoming, Tabor Opera House, Littleton Town Hall, and Opera Steamboat.
In the summer of 2011, Alaina established the Magnolia Music Studio Harp Camp for children. Since the inaugural year with only two young harpists, the camp has steadily grown into the formation of the Northern Colorado Summer Harp Festival. The festival now consists of three different levels of harp ensembles with up to twenty harpists participating nationwide. Alaina is the artistic director and she enjoys creating special harp ensemble arrangements for the festival.
When not performing, Alaina serves as president on the board of Mile High Chapter of the American Harp Society. With over fifteen years of teaching experience, Alaina currently teaches aspiring harpists of all ages at her studio in Loveland. Additionally, she collaborates with local middle and high school music directors by adapting or creating parts for the student harpists to be included in their beginning level orchestras.
IS There an age limit for students to participate?
Students of ALL ages are welcome and encouraged to participate.