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Jolene Collins - Harpist
This wedding harpist started to play the Harp at the age of eleven after being inspired by her father who is a conductor. She received her formal education with the Em Darzinsh music school in Riga under the instruction of Varvara Kacalova.
In 1990 she won a diploma in the young Harpist competition held in St Petersburg, and after winning the diploma she graduated from the music school with a distinction. She then enrolled into the Latvian Academy of Music under Dzidra Braze. Winning high marks as a soloist, orchestral player and teacher she then graduated with a masters degree in 1996.
After graduation she then won a scholarship to study at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama on the advanced instrumental studies course under David Watkins.
In March 1997 she entered the Reinl-Preis 1997 Harpist competition held in Munich wining third prize. In June she then went on to play in the winners concert at the Spanish cultural institute in Munich.
In May 1997 she came first in the Croydon International musical festival winning the chance to play a Harp concerto with the Surrey Sinfonietta. In July she played the Gliere harp Concerto again with the Surrey Sinfonietta in Beckenham and then in London.
In June 1997 she played a Harp recital for the Guildhall School of Music and attained the European Premier Prix (Concert Recital Diploma).
In May 1998 she gave a recital in the Wigmore hall as a winner of the Martin musical fund.
She has been a soloist with many orchestras including the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra and Latvian Chamber Orchestra playing Mozart's harp and flute concerto and also Ginastera and Gliere Harp Concerto's. She has also played with the Estonian National and the Lithuanian National Orchestra.
From 1993 until 1997 she combined her studies with teaching at the Darzinsh music school and being co principle Harpist with the Latvian National Symphony orchestra.
Since graduation she now works freelance undertaking recitals and private functions in Essex and London. Recent engagements include a performance in the Lord Chancellor's residence House of Lords with Maria Polliciana of the Sydney Opera House for the NSPCC and Brittens Ceremony of carols with Choir at St Simons Zelotes Knightsbridge.
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