Grammy award winning harpists

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    Maria Myers

    Have any harpists ever won a Grammy?



    Deborah Henson-Conant and Loreena McKennitt have both been NOMINATED for a Grammy (and have both won plenty of other awards).


    My orchestra, the Vancouver Symphony, won a Grammy for a recording of the Korngold, Walton and Barber Violin Concertos with violinist James Ehnes and Bramwell Tovey conducting. You can hear the harp really well in the Korngold in particular.


    Heidi Lehwalder’s producers were nominated and won a Grammy for recording her solo Salzedo lp (I was there when it was recorded), which was essentially a win for her. It was a bestselling recording, too. I think it was the next year, the same producers won again for recording Nancy Allen. Pierre Boulez, the Cleveland Orchestra, Alice Chalifoux shared a Grammy for the Debussy Album that included the Danses on it, though she wasn’t named as winner. Sara Ericsson’s all-Salzedo recording was recently nominated. I think there was another discussion of this, and some harpists may have been nominated in the past, or in popular music. The Grammy people do not seem to keep an archive of nominees.


    Andrew Lawrence-King with “Tragicomedia” for Biber.
    Can’t remember exactly the other with different ensembles. Several nominations for solo or various ensembles recordings.


    That wasn’t a Grammy – it was a Gramophone Award (1991) from Gramophone magazine. They are different.

    Maria Myers

    Thanks everyone!


    What is the name of Heidi’s CD?


    It was on the Nonesuch label, and is not in print. It will probably come out on cd in several years. It is called Scintillation, The Music of Carlos Salzedo. It is truly phenomenal. It will never be equalled. Her incredible recording with the Orpheus Trio is fortunately available on Vanguard Classics.

    By the way, it was Heidi who basically introduced the Ginastera Concerto to the world, performing it with virtually every major and minor orchestra in North America for years. It was performed more often than any other work by Ginastera in 1985. Every orchestral harpist played it, I think, or just about.


    Carol Thompson is a Grammy winning harpist with her performance with Paul Winters playing on her Rees Aberdeen lever harp (2005).

    Marta Cook is a Grammy winning harpist with her work playing with Yo Yo Ma using her Rees Aberdeen lever harp (2010).


    There are so many great recordings listed here, a great reference for everyone.

    I have a few favorites, especially Chalifoux’s “Debussy Danses” with Boulez.

    However, I remember Heidi’s recording, I practically wore out the album at the conservatory library.

    I never heard anyone play Ballade that fast and so strong and clean too!

    I mention her virtuosic playing and this album to my college students all the time.

    She was quite the prodigy and from what I understand the harp was always so easy for her, like breathing for the rest of us.

    I saw her perform live several times, she had terrific charisma with all that talent and beauty too. Her “Scintillation” was breathtaking.

    Her playing was beyond impressive, it was powerfully brilliant.

    If ever there was a harp goddess it was Heidi.


    I couldn’t agree more. She was as glamorous (is) as Rita Hayworth, Ava Gardner or Elizabeth Taylor.


    Oh, sure, sorry, I made a mistake.

    This year it, actually, was Grammy for Andrew – with Jordi Savall, album “Dinastia Borja”.

    Jerusha Amado


    Do you happen to have a photo of her (or a link to one) that you could post?



    This year, Sarah Schuster’s ’20th Century Harp Sonatas’ CD was nominated in the ‘best solo instrumental performance’ category…a huge achievement…the CD is excellent!

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