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The American Harp Foundation

The American Harp Foundation is pleased to announce that the 2024 Anne Adams Awards will take place on May 29, 2024, at Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University, in New Brunswick, NJ. The competitions will conclude with the winners’ recital on the evening of May 30, which will be open to the American Harp Society, the Rutgers community, and the public. Rutgers is located 25 minutes from Newark Liberty International Airport and is accessible by train from New York City. More information about local hotels and accommodation will be provided to applicants.

Competitors will perform in Nicholas Music Center. This 704-seat music hall serves as the largest performance space on campus. Designed by the distinguished architect Pietro Belluschi—whose roster of other projects includes Alice Tully Hall in New York City, the Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco, and the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall in Baltimore—the center was built in 1981 and underwent extensive renovations in 2018.

Three scholarship awards of $3,000 each for full-time study of the harp are given to the top finalists, thanks to the generous support from the Anne Adams Fund, The Sally Maxwell/Doris Calkins Fund, and the Jack/Doris Nebergall Funds.

History of the Anne Adams Awards

In 1990 as a tribute to his wife, Anne Adams, Dr. Burton Adams founded the Anne Adams Fund to be administered by the American Harp Society as a successor to the discontinued University of Oregon Close Awards, embodying a similar mission of helping the development of future professional harpists. In 1991, Lyon & Healy joined this project and became a proud, integral sponsor of these Awards by offering a gift certificate and plaque in honor of the winners to be displayed in their showroom. At this same time Sally Maxwell, long-time supporter and organizer of the Anne Adams Awards, worked with Dr. Adams to establish that the Doris Calkins Fund could be earmarked to support the Anne Adams Awards. When Sally Maxwell passed away, her family and friends changed the name of the Doris Calkins Fund to the Sally Maxwell/Doris Calkins Fund which led to increased funding. Jack Nebergall joined the mission and bequeathed funds in support of these awards via the Jack/Doris Nebergall Fund. In honor of Anne Adams, these awards have always included an orchestra, ballet, or opera excerpt in addition to the required solo repertoire.

2024 Repertoire Committee

Courtney Hershey Bress — Principal Harp, Colorado Symphony and Adjunct Professor of Harp, Lamont School of Music, University of Denver
Sarah Bullen — Retired principal harpist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Utah Symphony, and New York Philharmonic, has served as chairperson of the harp department of the Manhattan School of Music and Roosevelt University’s Chicago College of Performing Arts
Frances Duffy — Principal Harp, Hudson Valley Philharmonic, Wheeling Symphony and Allentown Symphony, New York City, and Broadway freelance harpist
Kristina Finch — Principal harpist for the Miami Symphony Orchestra and Florida Lakes Symphony Orchestra, performs with the Kontra Duo and the Jewel Tones, and runs the Miami Harp Academy
Elizabeth Huntley — Principal harpist with the Glens Falls Symphony, editor of The American Harp Journal
Paula Page — Principal Harp (ret.) Houston Symphony, Associate Professor of Harp, Shepherd School of Music, Rice University

The American Harp Foundation Awards are held on behalf of the American Harp Society.

Other Foundation Awards are described on the Scholarships  page.

The American Harp Foundation is very proud to acknowledge our sponsors: Lyon & Healy Harps.

For those seeking to pay Competition Application Fees, please use this link:

 2024 Required Repertoire

Philippe Gaubert — Légende

Carlos Salzedo — from Suite of Eight Dances
    Menuet
    Gavotte
    Siciliana
    Bolero

All above movements are required.

Marcel Tournier — L’Éternal rêveur
    from Au Hasards des Ondes, Op. 50

Marcel Tournier — Clair de lune sur l’etang du parc
    from Images, Suite No. 1, Op. 29

Both pieces are required.

Benjamin Britten — Young Person’s Guide excerpts:
   Cadenza
   Variation J
   Fugue – I to J; 14 after M to end

Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky — Swan Lake cadenza

All excerpts are required.

Both works of Marcel Tournier can be found in:
   “Marcel Tournier, 10 Pieces for Solo Harp”
   Edited by Carl Swanson
   Published by Carl Fischer

Requirements (Deadline 4.5.2024):

Applications will be accepted from advanced students who are:

  • Members of the American Harp Society
  • Full-time study of the harp in accredited United States college or university program through a Master’s Degree, or other post-high school institutions.

Applicants will be asked to:

Submit an application with resumé (Application Link now available here) and both video and audio recordings, along with a non-refundable application fee of $40 (Donate Button or by check/money order) by April 5, 2024. Letters of recommendation are not required (in an effort to reduce the burden on both teachers and students).

Prescreen Instructions: Video recordings are to be sent via unlisted/private youtube, and audio recordings are to be extracted and sent electronically along with the full application packet. Recordings do not have to be completed in one session for Prescreen. No editing is allowed.

Here are a few additional guidelines. (Note: No one will be penalized for playing repeats or recording in multiple takes. These are suggestions intended only to be helpful.)

For further information:

American Harp Foundation Awards
c/o Carrie Kourkoumelis
28 Cargill Street
Melrose, MA  02176

American Harp Foundation