Bluefield College

Font Size: A A A

Thorburn to Bring Harp Solos to BC

Harpist Colleen Potter Thorburn will present a faculty recital entitled “Twentieth-Century Harp Showpieces” on Tuesday, April 1 at 7:30 p.m. in Bluefield College’s Harman Chapel.

Chris Shoemaker

March 21, 2014

Harpist Colleen Thorburn will perform 20th Century harp solos during a recital at Bluefield College, April 1.


The program will feature works for solo harp from the 1920s to the 1960s and is open to the public with free admission. Composers represented include Benjamin Britten, Marcel Grandjany, Paul Hindemith, Heinz Holliger, and Nino Rota.


“Last year was Benjamin Britten’s centenary, so there have been lots of Britten pieces performed worldwide during the 2013-2014 season,” said Thorburn. “I thought it would be fun to share his ‘Suite for Harp’ from 1969 with the Bluefield community.”


Each piece in Thorburn’s program represents a different musical style, showcasing the wonderful diversity of compositional voices from the mid-20th century. Each piece uses the harp in very different ways, ranging from traditional, neo-Romantic harp writing to atonal writing with extended techniques. Several pieces on the program also reference poetry, scripture and Medieval Christian chant tunes.


Thorburn is an instructor of music at Bluefield College, where she teaches harp and online music appreciation. She also teaches piano and harp lessons to children and adults in the greater Bluefield area as an instructor in Bluefield College’s Fine Arts Community School.


As a performing artist, Thorburn has won top prizes at the American Harp Society’s Anne Adams Awards and performed with musical ensembles and festivals across the United States. She performs in New England regularly as principal harpist for the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra, in Virginia as a touring artist for the Virginia Commission for the Arts, and along the East coast with the horn and harp duo Apple Orange Pair, which released its first CD, “Seeds,” in 2013.


For more information about Thorburn’s faculty harp recital at Bluefield College on April 1, contact the BC Office of Public Relations by e-mail at or by phone at276-326-4212.




Leave a Comment: