My New Music Adventure

Last year I signed up for Cathy Heller’s Six Figure Sync Songwriting course. I feared that it would be like so many other online courses I sign up for – where I get all excited but I don’t follow through. Not so, this one! Out of 365 people there were about 148 of us who were very active, tuning into the five plus hours of content every week. Most of us were musicians who were looking for other ways to market our music – thus, sync songwriting (sync music is found in movies, commercials, film trailers, and on virtual platforms).

What a surprise this whole things was! I made friends with people all over the world, and now we are writing and recording music together – virtually. I have a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) and I am learning to record live instruments as well as using loops to mix and match various types of vibes and music. I hope I can list my first try here – a funk piece called MEAN GIRLS MIXDOWN. I wrote a Rap that was worked on by other hugely talented folk who knew a lot about what I didn’t know. Since February I have written or co-written 32 songs! They fall out of me almost daily now, and I want to start writing songs for others as a side business. What a lovely opportunity to have had during this time. I will be forever thankful to my husband and kids and grandkids (and to my Grandma Mermaid Guppies) for being patient with this “life diversion.”

The biggest lesson I learned from spending my Quarantine time on the computer: Your strengths can fill in what others’ weaknesses lack – and vice versa. Everyone has a voice, everyone has experience and can give content that matters. What a ride!

Summer Drama Camp Fun!

It has been my delight to create and run the Majestic Summer Theatre Adventure for young thespians over the last three summers. With an amazing staff, we put together a full production in just ten days of rehearsal time.  We serve between 50 and 60 students each summer – actors, dancers, singers, and technicians. Here are local newspaper articles describing our junior versions of THE JUNGLE BOOK, WIZARD OF OZ, and MY SON, PINOCCHIO.  Enjoy reading!

Orchestral Harp Fun!

I have so enjoyed playing with The Willamette Valley Symphony and the Salem Philharmonia Orchestra over the last couple of years. I have grown so much in my playing and I feel so happy to have had these opportunities. I am so sorry I didn’t capture Jaclyn LaRue’s  beautiful posters for you  to see, but here is a listing of what I’ve played  with these groups:

  • “The Banks of the Green Willow,” George Butterworth
  • “The Nocturnes,” Claude Debussy
  • “Petite Suite,” Claude Debussy
  • “Romeo & Juliet Overture-Fantasy,” Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
  • “Symphonie Espagnole in D Minor,” Edouard Lalo
  • “The Swan of Tuonela,” Jean Sibelius
  • “Symphony #2 in D Major,” Jean Sibelius”
  • “The Planets,” Gustav Holst
  • “Lt. Kijie Suite,” Sergei Prokofiev
  • “La Forza del Destino,” Giuseppe Verdi
  • “Star Wars Epic Suite,” John Williams
  • “Star Trek” (2009) and “Star Trek Into Darkness” (2013), Michael Giacchino
  • “Star Trek Through the Years,” Calvin Custer (no “official” harp part, but I threw harp glissandi in wherever I could!)
  • “American Salute,” Morton  Gould
  • “Also Sprach Zarathustra,” Richard Strauss (“harped” the piano part…)
  • “An Outdoor Overture,” Aaron Copland (“harped” the piano part…)
  • “The Star-Spangled Banner,” John Smith (“harped” the piano part…)
  • “Samson and Delilah – Bacchanale,” Camille Saint-Saens
  • “Symphony in Bb Major,” Ernest Chausson
  • “Showboat” Highlights, Jerome Kern
  • “The Music Man” Symphonic Impressions, Meredith Wilson (arr. Richard Hayman)
  • “Camelot” Selection for Orchestra, Lerner and Lowe (arr. by Robert Russell Bennett)
  • “Oklahoma” For Orchestra, Rodgers and Hammerstein (arr. by Robert Russell Bennet)
  • “West Side Story” Orchestral Selections, Leonard Bernstein (arr. by Robert Russell Bennett)
  • “Selections from Phantom of the Opera,” Andrew Lloyd Weber (arr. by Calvin Custer) – I played Electronic organ for this one: “DAAAA! Da, da, da, da, DAAAAA!”
  • “The Cowboys” Overture, John Williams (I played this with the Willamette Concert Band)
  • Another one with Willamette Concert Band – I can’t remember what!