Miskimon Double Concerto for Harpp & Cello in the
Susan is a Professor of Psychology. In addition to college and graduate level psychology courses, she has taught piano at the university level. Over the course of her musical lifetime, which started on the piano at age 3, Susan has played and studied piano, organ, classical guitar and marimba as well as the harp with instructors from Julliard and from the Curtis School of Music. Her musical education included performance seminars, undergraduate courses in music theory, counterpoint, conducting and orchestra. She has participated in a variety of competitions (even won a few), performances and showcases. Although piano was her first instrument and continues to be an important part of her life, her musical soul lies within the harp. Besides writing the Chesapeake Suite for harp, she has arranged several of the Bach Two Part and Three Part Inventions, miscellaneous Bach compositions, the Partita #3 and the French Suite #5 for lever harp. These are printed by her Singing Cat and Mule Publishing Company. ---the Miskimon Double Concerto contains original Celtic style music in traditional concerto form to celebrate the beautiful lands, creeks, tributaries and waters of the entire Chesapeake Bay area, especially around Miskimon. The melodies came to me as my husband, Dorian, and I hiked the land at our farm. Though Celtic in feeling, the Miskimon is modern in that it liberally employs 5/4 time signatures. The second movement celebrates the Gail Oak, a magnificent tree, so named to honor my sister-in-law. The oak is large enough at it's hollow base for me to practice my lever harp inside! The third movement reflects the joy we found in watching the heron at our creek and the eagle soaring over our fields. --------in the Celtic harper tradition of Turlough O'Carolan, who wrote songs to the host of a party, to the tavern owner for good service, to celebrate a birthday, I wrote 'Love is a Place' for my nephew's engagement party. -------since I am a long time enthusiast of Bach's music, I arranged his Sinfonia (#5) for lever harp. Some of Bach's music, because the counterpuntal figures may be lost without the sustaining powers of an instrument such as the piano, may not work as well with the harp. However, this particular piece lends itself beautifully to the harp sound. -----------Canoeing was written by Amy Beach for the piano. Since it embodies so beautifully the feeling of drifting the little creeks in the Northern Neck, I arranged it for lever harp. It is most fitting to honor the Northern Neck, since years ago many residents visited neighbors and towns by canoe and sloops .These were their only methods of transportation. -----------I arranged the second movement of the Handel Harp Concerto for harpsichord, lever harp and strings. I tried to give it some Celtic flavor as I imagined how the early settlers in the Chesapeake Bay area might enjoy an evening of listening to friends and family play this music on instruments available at the time.