Anna Maria Ravnopolska Dean

(born in Sofia, Bulgaria), composer and harpist. She studied with the Italian Professor and Harpist Liana Pasquali and continued her education in the USA with the pre-eminent Harpist and Professor  Susann McDonald, at Indiana University, Bloomington. Both of her teachers were students  of the French Harp School; Marcel Tournier (Liana Pasquali) and Henriette Renie (Susann McDonald). At the Indiana University School of Music, Anna Maria was awarded an Artist Diploma for Superior Artistic Achievement in Harp Performance”. She made her New York debut at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall in 1992. Anna Marie had previously been introduced to American audiences on the “McGraw- Hill Young artists Showcase” of WQXR radio in New York, and later participated in a series of notable international competitions, including those of Gargilesse in Berry, Munich, and Jerusalem. In 1992, she became one of the founders of the American University in Bulgaria. At the university, she teaches several theoretical and applied courses on the harp and the piano. In 2008 students of hers played the full version of the Tchaikovsky seasons for first time on the Balcan peninsula. One of her most notable performances was at the Eighth World Harp Congress, Geneva, in 2002. There she played the first harp in an ensemble of six harps and had a separate solo performance despite suffering partial paralysis of her left hand. In 2003, she discovered a talent for composing. Her first composition “Improvisation” was written in Bulgarian folk style.
Publications: Modeling Orchestration on harp Techniques in the works of Wagner, Smetana and Stravinsky, “WHC Review” to be published;  The Harp in the orchestral works of Bulgarian Composers ( 1900-1930).
Compositions: Improvisation for harp solo, June 2003;  The “Turtle’s castle”for harp solo, September 2003, Four compositions for harp on Haiku poetry, October 2003; Waltz and Lullaby for piano solo, November 2003; Rap Tango for harp and voice, November 2003, Suite of eight dances: Laendrer, Tango, Fandango, Horo, Kazachok, Arabian dance, Pavane, April 2004. “Fantasy on Traviata”, June 2005 “ Two haiku pieces on Basho, February 2006. “The mystic trumpeter” on Walt Whitman, February 2006. Five haiku pieces “ “Solo Honkadorae Renga”, February 2006.
Discography: Bulgarian Harp Favorities, Arpa d’oro, CD 2003, Legende: French Music for Harp, Gegas compact disc, 1999, Harpist at the Opera (honoring the Donizetti bicentennial) Arpa d’oro CD 1997, Harpd of the Americas (Paraguayan and pedal harps), Arpa d’oro CD, 1996. Erich Schubert Pop Harp Festival, Gega CD, 1994, a Harpist’s Invitation to the Dance, Gega cd, 1992.  

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