HarpFusion Performs for Gila Valley Schools and Residents

Gila Valley Arts Council
Harp Fusion Residency
November, 21, 2019

Harp Fusion served our valley on Thursday, November 21st via daytime performances at 8 venues in Graham County (Bonita Elementary, Dan Hinton School, Discovery Plus Academy, Solomon Elementary, Safford High, Triumphant Learning Center, Safford Senior Center, and the Safford Library.)  This represented a total of 653 students and adults.  They also hosted an evening performance for the community for an attendance of 88.  Feedback was solicited from attendees:


Daytime Residencies
(collection of comments)

Safford High School Orchestra Program (Workshop): Dr. Gott was very thorough in explaining the workings of the harp and there was quite a bit of question and answer time. She also talked about the composers and the pieces she performed. She performed three pieces for our students. Thanks for setting this up! I loved it and my students really enjoyed it!

Bonita Elementary:  Our kiddos loved the harpists.  The only thing that I would do a little different would be to have them play more at the beginning and then save the questions for later. Our kids LOVE to ask questions and if they are delayed a bit at the beginning, then the artists can play a bit more.  The harpists were both wonderful and so sweet to the kids.  I would love to have them again!

Dan Hinton School:  We thoroughly enjoyed the harpists.  They did a nice job of explaining the harp, how it works and the history of the harp.  The harpists answered questions and were very good with explaining things to our students.  After the performance, the kids were allowed to go up to the harps and strum and touch them.

Discovery Plus Academy: I was so impressed with Dr. Michelle Gott with Harp Fusion.  Right from the first greeting her laid back, fun personality put me at ease and I knew she was going to be fantastic with the students.  Her performance was educational and fun!   It is safe to say that we all learned something new that day, young and old!   The students were mesmerized by her talent.  I even heard a few say, “I want to play the harp!”   We had a few staff actually attend the performance unexpectedly that evening because of Michelle’s performance at school that afternoon.    As an educator/administrator, I am excited that we have this wonderful opportunity to bring these performers to our schools!  It makes such an impact on these kids to be able to experience these opportunities. We had 112 students attend and out of those 112 students, 90 of them had never heard or seen a harp or harpist play in person before…. WOW!!! (I took a poll)  Thank you Gila Valley Art Council… your hard work is appreciated!

Triumphant Learning Center: We absolutely enjoyed the harpist! Our children loved it! They were intrigued by the harps alone and the harpists were very creative in their questions; asking to educate our students. The harpists are extremely talented and very knowledgeable about the harps. Our children had so many questions to about the harps and they did a great job answering them and responding to the interest of the students after they listened to the harpist play. The harpists were very kind and very professional. We hope to see them back again! We appreciate your harpists taking the time to educate our children on an instrument so extraordinary. Triumphant Learning Center appreciates you making time for our charter school and students.

Safford Library: Our harpist was friendly and shared her knowledge of the harp with her introductions and in Q&A time. She played a variety of music.  She and the harp soothed me during my hectic day.  Such as nice relaxing moment mid-day.


Evening Performance
(Collection of Comments)

Great! I am having a good time.

Wonderful!  They are playing things I actually recognize.

Love the interaction with the audience.

Enjoyable!  Wonderful! GVAC does a great service to this community.

Great! Very nice!

Good choice on Bicycle.  I brought my mother expecting to be bored.  I am not.  This is so entertaining.

I loved the Strauss Piece.

So interactive with the audience.  Love the choice of music.

Love the energy.  A talented group with personality.

Love the comparison between the library performance, where I learned so much about the harp.  So, tonight, I am hearing (visually impaired) it in action.

Oh, my goodness!  The John Denver piece was incredible in every way.  Beautiful instrumental and vocal sound.  My favorite!

The biggest takeaway for me was to discover how much versatility the harp has and I never would

have had that opportunity without the GVAC bringing this very talented group to our community.

We had a residency at DPA today.  It drew us here tonight with our husbands.  Wonderful!


Respectfully submitted,
Paulette LeBlanc
GVAC Residency Chair



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