LIVE | Miriam Kessler, 17, harp, piano, and composer

March 25, 2023, 11:00 am

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Miriam Kessler poses with a harp

Live this morning, an unusual two-instrument recital: Miriam Kessler from Midwest Young Artists Conservatory is an accomplished performer on two different instruments. She brings harp music by Claude Debussy, Paul Hindemith, and Carlos Salzedo; piano music by Sergei Rachmaninoff and William Grant Still; and her own composition, Op. 55.

An accomplished harpist, pianist, and composer, Miriam Kessler of Elgin enjoys playing solo, orchestral, and chamber music. This past winter, she won both the Midwest Young Artists Conservatory Senior Division of the Walgreens Concerto Competition and NIU’s Community School of the Arts Sinfonia Concerto Competition. She has been selected as a participant in the American Harp Society’s Young Composers Project and was a finalist in ASCAP’s Morton Gould Young Composer Awards in 2020 and 2022. Miriam placed first in the Greater Chicago Chapter of the American Harp Society’s scholarship competition (junior division) in 2020.

In the summers, she has participated in various enrichment camps such as the Illinois Summer Harp Class, where she was a featured young talent (2022); Boston University’s Tanglewood Institute (2021, virtual); Young Artist’s Harp Seminar; and OPUS Chamber Music Camp. Miriam is especially thankful to all those who have helped her develop musically, including: her harp teacher, Dr. Erin Freund; her orchestra director, Dr. Allan Dennis; her composition instructor, Dr. Jonathon Kirk; her piano collaborator and music coach, Sooka Wang; her church music director, Jonathan Gilley; and her late piano teacher, Constance Hughes. Miriam is looking forward to beginning collegiate harp studies in the fall.


Claude Debussy: Arabesque No. 1

Paul Hindemith: Harp Sonata:
I. Mäßig schnell

Sergei Rachmaninoff: Prelude in C-sharp minor, Op. 3, No. 2

Miriam Kessler: Op. 55

William Grant Still: Summerland

Carlos Salzedo: Variations on a Theme in the Ancient Style

Some music is not available in the podcast version for copyright reasons.