Elizabeth Hainen


Elizabeth Hainen Photo credit: Amanda Stevenson

“She is a complete harpist who knows and uses her instrument’s strength and brilliance and strikes its fire.” -Miami Herald’s

Elizabeth Hainen has earned an international reputation as one of classical music’s great harp ambassadors. Hailed by the Washington Post for “unusual presence with silky transparency” and by the New York Times for her “earthy solidarity,” she has thrilled audiences throughout the world with programs showcasing the diversity—and virtuosity—of her modern-day instrument. As principal harpist with The Philadelphia Orchestra for over 20 years, she has presented numerous featured performances. In addition to The Philadelphia Orchestra, she has appeared as soloist with the City of London Sinfonia, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Kennedy Center Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Colombia, Bulgaria National Radio Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfonica del Principado de Austurias, Chicago Civic Orchestra, Mexico State Symphony, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, and made regular appearances at Carnegie Hall and with the Chamber Music Society. A champion of new music, she gave the US, China, European, and Australian premieres of Nu Shu: The Secret Songs of Women, written for her by Tan Dun. Ms. Hainen serves on the faculties of the Curtis Institute of Music and Temple University. In 2004 she founded the Harp Colony, now in residence at Curtis Summerfest, which welcomes approximately 20 of the most promising young harpists for one week of intensive study each summer. Through her nonprofit foundation, the Lyra Society, she has provided educational outreach to hundreds of school children in urban Philadelphia and the surrounding area.