Rebecca Kauffman has been the principal harpist of the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra since 1979, and has performed extensively both as an orchestral and chamber musician. She is also the second harpist with the Reading Symphony Orchestra and the Vermont Symphony Orchestra, and is the former principal harpist with the Lancaster and York Symphonies.
Ms. Kauffman has appeared as the featured soloist with the Harrisburg and York Symphonies, the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra in Ithaca, NY, the Millersville University-Community Orchestra, and the Hershey Symphony. In February 2013, Ms. Kauffman will be the featured soloist with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra performing Ravel’s Introduction Allegro and Debussy’s Dances sacrée et profane. She has also performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra as both second harpist and principal harpist. She has also performed with the Delaware Symphony Orchestra, the Binghamton Philharmonic of Binghamton, NY., the Dartmouth Symphony Orchestra, and a variety of orchestral and choral groups in the Mid-Atlantic and New England States. Ms. Kauffman will solo and accompany the choral group Bella Voce in Burlington, Vermont in May 2012.
Ms. Kauffman has appeared in concert with a wide variety of concert artists, including Itzhak Pearlman, Gil Shaham, Lynn Harrell, Yanni, Roberta Peters, Shirley Jones, Maureen McGovern, Bernadette Peters, and the Lettermen. She has performed under the direction of many acclaimed conductors, including Alan Gilbert, Yuri Temirkanov, Stuart Malina, Jamie Laredo, Anthony Princiotti, Richard Westerfield, Andrew Constantine and Sidney Rothstein. In addition to her orchestral performances, Ms. Kauffman has performed many solo and duo recitals, including a performance at the Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, PA, various recitals with her esprit! duo partner, flutist Mary Hannigan, and The Kauffman Harp Duo, with her sister, Jane Kauffman Brye.
In 1979, Ms. Kauffman received her Bachelor of Science in Music Education, cum laude, from Millersville University, while studying with harpist Molly Hahn. In 1985, she earned her Master of Music in Harp Performance from Temple University as a student of Marilyn Costello, former principal harpist with the Philadelphia Orchestra. For many years, Ms. Kauffman pursued additional harp studies at the Salzedo Harp Colony in Camden, Maine, with Alice Chalifoux, former principal harpist with the Cleveland Orchestra, and Jeanne Chalifoux, former harp instructor at Peabody Conservatory.
While pursuing her performance career, Ms. Kauffman also taught music in the Pennsylvania Public Schools for 29 years. She developed a Suzuki string program and expanded the orchestra program in the Conestoga Valley School District in Lancaster, PA. In addition, she implemented a harp program in the school district, and several of her students were accepted into the PMEA State Orchestra Festival.