1. What university or conservatory did you attend, and was it for music?
Auburn University B.M. in harp; Virginia Commonwealth University M.M. in harp
2. What is your favorite piece (or pieces) to play in the orchestra?
I love Ravel’s Daphnis and Chloë especially—it is such wonderful writing for the instrument.
3. Do you have a pre-concert ritual or routine?
I like to arrive early at the Kennedy Center and check my harp for broken strings. Then I relax either by having dinner, or just reading, and return to the stage about 30 minutes before concert time to tune and warm-up.
4. Describe your favorite NSO moment:
A few years ago we played Act III of Die Walküre under Ivan Fischer—something about his gesture when we landed on the “Magic Fire Music” at the end was really thrilling and magical, even though it is one of the most difficult excerpts in the repertoire for harp. I looked forward to that moment in each performance.
5. What are three songs or pieces you love to listen to?
When I’m relaxing I like to listen to traditional Irish and Scottish music. But usually my iPod is filled with music I’m preparing either to play with the NSO, or to teach.
6. Did you grow up in a musical household?
7. What did you want to be growing up?
I changed my mind every week
a. When did you know you wanted to be a professional classical musician?
Second or third year of college. I started out as a math major.
8. What is your favorite thing about living in the DC area?
Proximity to everything—mountains and ocean are three hours away. Wonderful theatre and restaurants.
9. Where is your favorite DC hangout?
I like to take long walks in the parks.
10. Do you have any pets?
11. What is your favorite way to spend your free time?
I like to read, take walks
12. Favorite movie:
The Way with Martin Sheen
13. Favorite book:
I love to read, especially mysteries.
14. Favorite sports team:
Not into sports
15. Name one thing people would be surprised to know about you.