ASTRID W. STAPP BIOGRAPHY

Harpist Wedding Music Frederick

Born in Maastricht, Holland Astrid Walschot-Stapp began studying the harp at age nine with Katja Noorman.  She studied harp at the Maastricht Conservatory with Teresia Rieu where she received a Docerend Musicus (Harp Performance and Pedagogy, 1992) and an Uitvoerend Musicus (Artist Diploma, 1994). Astrid went on to study with Francois Bartholome at the Royal Conservatory in Brussels and with Marisa Robles at the  Royal College of Music in London.  Following her studies in London, she received the Prince Bernhard Fund Prize to study with Susan McDonald at Indiana University.  Mrs. Walschot - Stapp received a Performer Diploma from Indiana University in 1996.  Mrs. Stapp grew up with the French style of playing (H. Renie, Grandjany) but does not limit her insight to one method.                                           

Astrid has had an extensive orchestral career.  In March 2003 Maestro Yuri Temirkanov selected her to be the acting principal harpist of the Baltimore Symphony during his tenure.  This included several performances at Carnegie Hall.   In addition, she has performed with the National Symphony, National Philharmonic, Washington Opera, Baltimore Opera, National Gallery Orchestra, Richmond Symphony, Harrisburg Symphony, Limburg Symphony, and Opera Royal de Wallonie.  Astrid has worked with some of the world's most respected conductors, including Yuri Termirkanov, Mario Venzago, Leonard Slatkin, Kurt Masur, James Judd, Jean Pascal Tortelier, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Jeffrey Tate, Marin Alsop, Jack Everly, and Erich Kunzel.  She has performed in concert with leading musicians such as, Yo-Yo Ma, Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, Jose Carreras, Kiri Te Kanawa, Joshua Bell, Julia Fisher, Lang Lang, Denyce Graves, Andre Rieu, Stevie Wonder, Randy Newman and Barry Manilow.

As a soloist, Astrid has performed in recital at such venues as the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, National Gallery of Art, Kennedy Center Terrace Theater, and the Dutch and Finnish Embassys in Washington D. C.   Mrs. Walschot-Stapp has performed chamber music in numerous recitals in Europe and North America with such groups as the Orlando String Quartet, Kennedy Center Theater Chamber Players, The Left Bank Concert Society, the Fessenden Ensemble and Skya.  She recently released a CD "Out of the Silence" with original compositions that she composed herself.  She also played the composition "Eliana" for the soundtrack of the new 2014 movie "The Harpist".  Astrid has been active in popularizing pieces by contemporary composers.  The pieces “Astre”, “Sagitaure”, and the harp concerto "Tanghetto" were written for her by Jean Sevriens.  Several pieces were written for her daughter Eliana.  These include "Lullaby for Eliana" and "Adagietto" by J. Sevriens, "Lullabies for Eliana" by Artem Nyzhnyk, and "Eliana" by Meg Robinson.

Mrs. Walschot-Stapp has taught at the Baltimore School for the Arts and was on the faculty of the Washington Conservatory from 1997 to 2004.  Astrid co-founded the  MCYO harp ensemble with Olivia Gutoff at Strathmore Hall and directed it from 2001-2009.  Astrid currently conducts the Frederick Harp Ensemble and teaches at the Sunderman Conservatory at Gettysburg College.