Q and A with Lavinia Meijer


What do Uma Thurman, Iggy Pop, Philip Glass, and Lavinia Meijer have in common? They will all be featured artists at the 2016 Tibet House Benefit Concert on Monday, Feb. 22 at Carnegie Hall. It’s not often that a classical harpist gets invited to share the stage with a rock star known for his onstage antics so we wanted to get the inside scoop. Here’s what Lavinia had to say:

Philip Glass invited you to perform on the upcoming Tibet House benefit concert. How did that come about?

We have kept contact throughout the last 5 years, from the first time I met him in 2011. He had heard of me through a friend of his and invited me to perform at his concert in Amsterdam, I made a transcription of his “Metamorphosis” for the occasion. He was very impressed by my playing and allowed me to transcribe more of his music. I am very honored that he has invited me for this special evening at the Carnegie Hall in New York, playing together with him and other great artists.

You’ll be sharing the stage with Iggy Pop. That seems pretty crazy! Do you know much about him?

Hehe, it is indeed an unique combination! I have some jealous friends, who have been a big fan of Iggy Pop for years. I have not been exposed to so much of his music in the past, but through the music of David Bowie I got to know some of the music he has made. Also, he is known for his surprising performances on stage, so I actually don’t know what to expect, but I believe it will be wonderful!

What will you perform on the concert?

The plan is to perform “Tonight” by David Bowie with Philip Glass and Iggy Pop, a wonderful piece that very much fits the evening. Next to that I will play a solo piece and in different combinations with others.

Can you tell us anything about Tibet House?

The Tibet House has been there many years to support and cherish the Tibetan culture, which has been under a lot of pressure for so long. Philip Glass is much involved with their culture/believes and in this way wants to support them. Every year’s concert is very special because of the diversity of the artists, often playing together for the first time. (read more)

Three quick questions: Favorite food? Favorite city? Favorite piece to play on the harp?

Ah quick questions, but no quick answers to give! At this moment: Korean food, New York, Philip Glass (pretty much everything!)

Can you let Harp Column readers know what you’re up to these days when you’re not playing at Carnegie Hall with rock stars?

Next to studying existing pieces and arranging pieces, I am also composing nowadays, it is a great process and a wonderful feeling when something turns out the way I had in mind. I use different things as an inspiration, the weather, a person, a story, can be anything. There is an urge within me that wants to connect sounds to images, to create music on thoughts. Who knows where this might lead to!

Read more about Lavinia Meijer at www.laviniameijer.com.


About Author

Kimberly Rowe is co-founder of Harp Column and served as Editor of the print edition from 1993–2013. She now serves as Web Editor. Kimberly performs and teaches in the mid-Atlantic region of the US. She is co-founder of the Young Artist's Harp Seminar, and on the faculty at Temple University, in Philadelphia.

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