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date: 18 November 2019

McDonald, Susann locked

  • Ann Griffiths
  • , revised by Megan E. Hill


(b Rock Island, IL, May 26, 1935). American harpist and teacher. After training in Chicago and New York, she studied from the age of 15 in Paris, at first privately with Henriette Renié, then with Lily Laskine at the Conservatoire. There she received in 1955 the Premier Prix de Harpe, becoming the first American awardee. She won second prize at the first Israel International Harp Contest in 1959. She returned to Chicago to give a solo performance at the Chicagoland Music Festival, and later gave debut recitals in Los Angeles, Washington, and New York. Praised for her impeccable technique, she has since played as a soloist in Europe, Australia, Japan, Israel, and North and South America. She has recorded on both traditional and concert harps, playing much of the traditional and also the more neglected harp repertory, including works by Jan Ladislav Dussek, Antonio Rosetti, Gabriel Fauré, Félix Godefroid, Marcel Tournier, Claude Debussy, Isaac Albéniz, Anthoine Francisque, and Alfredo Ortiz, among many others. In addition, she has given first performances of many works composed for her, including Joseph Wagner’s Fantasy Sonata, LaSalle Spier’s Sonata, and Camil van Hulse’s Suite, all for solo harp. A teacher of great distinction, she succeeded Marcel Grandjany at the Juilliard School in ...

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