Raised in a musical home, Molly Madden was just two years old when she first laid her fingers on a harp and she has been in love with the beautiful instrument ever since. Molly studied music with Dr. Ann Yeung at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). There she received bachelors degrees in both Harp Performance and Music Education, as well as a masters degree in Harp Performance. During her time at UIUC, Molly performed numerous solo and chamber works and participated in many top ensembles, playing principal harp for the UIUC Opera, UIUC Symphony Orchestra, and UIUC Wind Symphony, among others. Molly is also featured on recordings of David Del Tredici’s Final Alice, Ned Rorem’s Lions, Jennifer Higdon’s Percussion Concerto and David Maslanka’s Symphony No. 9 and Sea Dreams. She has collaborated with many celebrated artists including the late Marvin Hamlisch, Monica Mancini and ensembles such as the Heartland Festival Orchestra, Illinois Symphony Orchestra, Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra, the Prairie Ensemble, and Sinfonia da Camera.
From 2008-2013 Molly performed and toured as a member of the innovative and edgy harp quartet, the HarpCore 4, who were honored to perform at the 2010 American Harp Society Summer Conference in Tacoma, Washington. Molly is the recipient of a 2006 Verna K. Townsend Award and the prestigious Thomas J. Smith Scholarship, and is also a 2008 String Division Achievement Award winner. In 2008, she was a national finalist in the American Harp Society Anne Adams Awards. Recently, Molly received an honorable mention in the UIUC Symphony Orchestra concerto competition. In February of 2013, Molly was featured on WCIA-TV’s afternoon show, ciLiving, and in September of 2013, Molly performed the Mozart Flute and Harp Concerto with the Heartland Festival Orchestra. From 2011-2013 Molly served as President of the Roslyn Rensch Central Illinois chapter of the American Harp Society.
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