Pennsylvania born and Vermont based harpist, Rebecca Kauffman, has been the principal harpist of the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra (HSO) in Harrisburg, PA since 1979, and has performed with various orchestras throughout the northeast, including the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Reading Symphony Orchestra, Delaware Symphony Orchestra, Lancaster Symphony Orchestra, Cayuga Chamber Orchestra in Ithaca NY, and the Vermont Symphony Orchestra. She has appeared as the featured soloist with several orchestras including the HSO, York Symphony Orchestra, Cayuga Chamber Orchestra and the Hershey Symphony.
Since moving to Vermont in 2008, Ms. Kauffman has performed with various musical ensembles including the Vermont Contemporary Music Ensemble, the Opera Company of Middlebury, the Burlington Ensemble, Capital City Concerts, the Music and Literature Series at UVM and several choral groups including Bella Voce, with whom she has recently recorded. In addition, she is a frequent recitalist in central Pennsylvania with HSO’s second flutist, Mary Hannigan in their flute and harp duo, esprit!, and with her sister, harpist Jane Kauffman Brye in the Kauffman Harp Duo.
In December 2012, Ms. Kauffman released her debut solo classical harp album, “Harp …On The Edge of Softness” featuring several virtuoso harp compositions and solo piano works she transcribed for harp. Selections on the recording include, Debussy’s Clair de Lune, Schumann’s Träumerie, Pierne’s Impromptu-Caprice and Ungar’s Ashokan Farewell, to name a few.
In 1979, Ms. Kauffman received her Bachelor of Science in Music Education, cum laude, from Millersville University, while studying with harpist Molly Hahn. In 1985, she earned her Master of Music in Harp Performance from Temple University as a student of Marilyn Costello, former principal harpist with the Philadelphia Orchestra. For many years, Ms. Kauffman pursued additional harp studies at the Salzedo Harp Colony in Camden, Maine, with Alice Chalifoux, former principal harpist with the Cleveland Orchestra, and Jeanne Chalifoux, former harp instructor at Peabody Conservatory.
While pursuing her performance career, Ms. Kauffman taught music in the Pennsylvania Public Schools for 29 years. She developed a Suzuki String Program and expanded the orchestra program in the Conestoga Valley School District, Lancaster, PA. In addition, she implemented a harp program in the school district where several of her students were accepted into the PMEA State Orchestra Festivals. Ms. Kauffman was the 2001 recipient of The Pennsylvania-Delaware String Teachers Association’s (PADESTA) Outstanding String Teacher Award.
For more information on Ms. Kauffman, visit her websites at: www.rebeccakauffman.com, and www.esprit-flute-harp.com.