Audrey Harper
Audrey Harper
A Madison high schooler was selected from a field of over 700 to perform with students from around the world at the prestigious Carnegie Hall in New York City next month.

Audrey Harper, daughter of Cory and Heidi Harper, was selected out of a field of 700 finalists from 46 State, D.C., Puerto Rico, Guam, Canada, Australia, Bermuda, Hong Kong, Qatar and a handful of other countries for the 2019 Carnegie Hall Honors Performance Series. 

The Honors Performance Series allows accomplished performers to study under master conductors and perform at world-class venues such as Carnegie Hall and the Sydney Opera House. 

“We are very proud of her and excited for the trip,” Heidi said. “We always love to hear her perform and share her gift with us and the audience.”

Harper said she has been singing since she was about 10. She began studying music under the direction of Andrea Coleman with the Cantabile Youth Chorale from 2011 to 2014.  

She received superior scores at the 2017 and 2018 Riverland Solo/Ensemble Competitions and was selected for the 2018 SATB All-State Honor Choir. 

She is a junior at Madison-Ridgeland Academy where she is a member of the high school choir and has also participated in various school productions including the school’s upcoming production of Cinderella where she will play the “Fairy Godmother.”

Brittnye Aven, the newly-minted Department Chair of Visual and Performing Arts at MRA and second-year choir director, who helped Harper prepare for her audition, said that Harper was “driven” and “takes initiative.”

Harper also enjoys playing guitar and is a member of the DC Guitar All Star Band. 

“I really like singing. it gives me an opportunity to express how I feel and meet a bunch of people,” Harper said.

Harper has been selected to perform as a soprano II with the High School Honors Concert Choir at Carnegie Hall. She will travel to New York City next Friday to rehearse and study under master conductor, Andre Thomas.

Despite the weight of the situation, Harper is very comfortable with the magnitude of the trip.

“I am not really nervous, I like singing with a big group of people. It will be fun,” she said. "This is the biggest trip I have taken for my singing, but I have done stuff like this before." 

During her time she will rehearse her songs as well fit in some sightseeing and take in a production of “My Fair Lady.”

For her audition, she had to record herself signing two songs in Italian, a new frontier for her that she has found she enjoys. She has also learned songs in Latin and French.

“I like it a lot. singing in a different language makes you approach the song in a different way and is another way for me to express myself,” Harper said. “I don’t necessarily know what I am singing word for word but I always look up the meaning of the song and get an idea for how it should feel and sound.”

Aven said that she is proud to have a student like Harper.

“Teaching Audrey is such a pleasure,” Aven said. “It takes a lot of focus and dedication to achieve something like this, it is not an everyday thing.”