The Harper’s Voice
Anna O’Connell,baroque & Celtic harps, soprano
Amanda Powell,soprano
with Carrie Krause & Emi Tanabe, violin
Kathie Stewart, baroque & Irish flute
René Schiffer, viola da gamba
Tina Bergmann, hammered dulcimer
Luke Conklin, harp and recorder

The harp was the voice of the marginalized peoples of the British Isles – Irish, Welsh, and Scots. Ireland’s legendary blind harper, Turlough O’Carolan, was one of several great harpers of the 17th and 18th centuries. Today’s young harpist troubadour, Anna O’Connell, sings and accompanies herself on the harp in the manner of the old Celtic harpists. Six Apollo’s Fire musicians on violins, flute, cello, hammered dulcimer, and lutes join Anna in sparkling music by O’Carolan, Dowland, and Purcell, along with Scottish and Irish folk songs.

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Hear the Music

The Duke of Norfolk, from Playford’s “Division Violin”
Veronika Skuplik & Andreas Arend | Silk & Tweed

PURCELL Shepherd, leave decoying
Trevor Pinnock & The English Concert | Purcell: Dido & Aeneas / King Arthur / Dioclesian / Timon of Athens / 3 Odes

O’Carolan’s Favorite Jig
Jeannette Sorrell & Apollo’s Fire | Sacrum Mysterium

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Meet the Artists

    baroque & Celtic harps, soprano
CARRIE KRAUSE, violin, has performed extensively across the U.S. with early music groups including Chatham Baroque, New York State Baroque, Portland Baroque, Passamezzo Moderno, Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado, Clarion, Pacific Baroque, New Trinity Baroque, and as visiting Artistic Director of Seattle Baroque. She has also performed as a soloist with Juilliard 415 in Jordan Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Duke’s Hall, and the Thomaskirche. As a modern player, she serves as Concertmaster of the Bozeman Symphony and has performed as a soloist with the Fairbanks, Casper, Bozeman, and Billings Symphonies, and String Orchestra of the Rockies. She is Artistic Director of Baroque Music Montana and the Period Performance Workshop, and teaches a large studio of award-winning students. She holds degrees in violin performance from Carnegie Mellon University, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and The Juilliard School.

EMI TANABE, violin, holds a Professional Diploma from Roosevelt University and a Master’s degree in music from the University of North Texas. She is an adjunct faculty at Benedictine University in Chicago, IL. Emi enjoys multifaceted career; she performs not only with Baroque ensembles but performs with Jazz/Latin groups, world music groups, Cirque du Soleil type of dinner shows and more.

KATHIE STEWART, wooden flutes, is a founding member and principal flutist of Apollo’s Fire. A faculty member at the Cleveland Institute of Music, she is also a Kulas Visiting Artist at CWRU, and former Curator of Harpsichords at the Oberlin Conservatory where she taught baroque flute for nearly twenty years. She is an avid proponent of Celtic music, playing Irish flute on several recordings from Apollo’s Fire. She has performed with the Cleveland Orchestra, Tafelmusik, The Four Nations Ensemble, Oberlin Baroque Ensemble, ARTEK, and the Bach Sinfonia in Washington, D.C. and is the Assistant Director of the Seattle Baroque Flute Workshop.

BRIAN KAY, vocals, lute, theorbo, is a modern-day troubadour. He is the first Artistic Leadership Fellow of Apollo’s Fire and in 2019, won a Grammy® Award for his work on the CD Songs of Orpheus. He has performed throughout the world at venues such as the National Concert Hall of Dublin, Belfast Castle (Ireland), Carnegie Hall, and the Kennedy Center. His live radio appearances include NPR, WYPR and 98ROCK (Baltimore), WGBH (Boston), and WCLV (Cleveland). He has recorded for AVIE and Sono Luminus labels, and has been heard on more than ten album releases. He is a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, arranger, traditional and historical music specialist, poet, and painter.

RENÉ SCHIFFER, cello & viola da gamba, is praised for his “interpretive imagination and patrician command of the cello” (THE CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER). He is a native of Holland where he was a protégé of Anner Bijlsma. He later studied baroque cello with Jaap ter Linden and viola da gamba with Catharina Meints. As a member of Sigiswald Kuijken’s La Petite Bande for sixteen years, he toured four continents and appeared many times on European television. He has also performed with the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra, Les Musiciens du Louvre, and in over forty projects with Tafelmusik of Toronto. As a concerto soloist, he has appeared throughout North America and Europe, and can be heard on acclaimed CD recordings of the Vivaldi Concerto for Two Cellos and the Tango Concerto for Two Gambas (his own composition) on British label AVIE. He can be heard on more than forty CD recordings, on the Harmonia Mundi, Philips, Virgin Classics, Erato, Sony, and AVIE labels. He serves on the faculty of the Cleveland Institute of Music as Teacher of Baroque Cello, and has given masterclasses and coachings for the New World Symphony (Miami), the University of Michigan, Oberlin Conservatory, and Cincinnati College-Conservatory.

LUKE CONKLIN, Celtic harp, wooden flutes, was a member of the first class of historical performers at the Juilliard School, and earned his doctorate in Historical Performance from Case Western Reserve University. He has performed with Portland Baroque, The American Bach Soloists, Trinity Wall Street Baroque Orchestra, Clarion Music Society, and many others. He maintains a small teaching studio in Kalamazoo, Michigan. In addition to performing Early Music on many instruments, he also plays Irish and Scottish flute and harp.

TINA BERGMANN, hammered dulcimer, was hailed by Pete Seeger as “the best hammered dulcimer player I’ve heard in my life.” A fourth-generation musician, Bergmann began playing music at age eight, learning the mountain dulcimer from her mother in the aural tradition and learning the hammered dulcimer at the knee of West Virginia-native builder and performer Loy Swiger. Demonstrating gifts for both performance and teaching, she has been a featured performer across the United States, performing solo; as a duo with her husband, bassist Bryan Thomas; with her stringband Hu$hmoney; and as a featured soloist with Apollo’s Fire and Canadian early music group, La Nef.


Antoine Hebert. “La musique”. Musée des Beaux-Arts de la Ville de Paris, Petit Palais.

“The U.S.A.’s hottest baroque band.” –CLASSICAL MUSIC MAGAZINE (UK)

baroque & Celtic harps, soprano

is a soprano and harpist who works to recreate the lost traditions of the harpist troubadours. Her love of Celtic music was cemented by a visit to Ireland at a young age, where the fascinating mix of concerts (in a castle and in the streets of Dublin), monuments, and museums led her lifelong fascination with harps. She has researched the history of self-accompaniment with harps ranging from medieval to modern folk instruments. Her self-accompanied repertoire includes medieval, renaissance, and early baroque songs from Italy, Germany, and the British Isles. She is currently completing doctoral studies in Historical Performance Practice at Case Western Reserve University.

Anna has sung as soloist with the Hong Kong Early Music Society and the Maui Chamber Orchestra. In Cleveland, she sings with the Trinity Cathedral Chamber Singers and the Cleveland Chamber Choir. She holds degrees from the University of Southern California and Providence College. She studies voice with Ellen Hargis and Dina Kuznetsova, and historical harps with Maxine Eilander. Her Ithaca-based duo, Gothic Fire, specializes in Medieval and Renaissance music performed on rebec and harp. She is thrilled to make her debut with Apollo’s Fire in these concerts.


has been praised as “the star of the evening” (Seen and Heard International, UK) and “charismatic and theatrically arresting” (San Francisco Chronicle). A highly versatile musician, she is at home in repertoire from Monteverdi to Mozart to Ravel, and has toured internationally as soloist in baroque opera, oratorio, and crossover folk programs. Her tour performances with GRAMMY®-winning baroque orchestra Apollo’s Fire (Jeannette Sorrell) include such venues as the National Concert Hall of Ireland in Dublin, the Irish National Opera House, the Aldeburgh Festival (UK), the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the National Gallery in Washington, and Zellerbach Hall in San Francisco, among others. Her 2019 debut as Messiah soloist with the Calgary Symphony won kudos as “the soloist of the night… singing to perfection.”

As a recording artist, Ms Powell has been featured on several Apollo’s Fire albums including Sugarloaf Mountain, Sephardic Journey, and Christmas on Sugarloaf Mountain, all of which received rave reviews on both sides of the Atlantic and debuted in the top ten on the BILLBOARD Classical Chart. Her 2015 solo debut album, Beyond Boundaries, is an intimate program of folk, jazz, and global music. She is a fluent improvisor and has collaborated with such artists as Bobby McFerrin and Sheila Jordan.


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