Andrew T. Chan
Applauded by The National Post as having “a rare charisma”, Canadian harpist Andrew Chan has performed across Canada, in the United States, and Asia. He performs as Principal Harp with the Toronto Concert Orchestra where he has been featured frequently as a sololist in the Symphony in the Gardens series at Casa Loma, performing harp concertos by Debussy, Handel and Ravel. He was also featured in Mozart Flute and Harp Concerto during the orchestra’s Ontario tour in 2017.
This fall, Chan is excited to bring music from his hometown to Ontario again. Having championed the charming Harp Concerto by Vancouver composer Michael Conway Baker with various orchestras in Ontario, he will perform it with the Brantford Symphony Orchestra this September.
Enthusiastic to expand the harp’s repertoire, Chan works with composers closely, premiering and advocating new Canadian works. He recently presented “Three Dances for Ocyrroe” at the World Harp Congress in Hong Kong, a composition written for him by Constantine Caravassilis. Upcoming in 2019, he will travel to New York to participate in the World-Premiere performance and recording of Caravassilis’ extensive composition “From Sappho’s Lyre“. Chan’s Triptych, a collection of his compositions, is published by Lyon & Healy Publications.
An enthusiastic organizer, Chan is the founder and Artistic Director of the Harps on the Hill Christmas Festival where he advocates the appreciation of the harp in its performance and teaching. He directs the Harps on the Hill Centre in Markham ON.
As dedicated teacher, he founded the Harp Sinfonia, a multiple harp ensemble that provides training for young promising harp students. His enthusiastic pedagogy has allowed many of his students to become winners of various awards, scholarships and auditions. Visiting students have come from Canada, USA, Europe and Asia.
He is grateful for his training during his school years with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, Symphony Orchestra Academy of the Pacific and the National Academy Orchestra of Canada. He was a recipient of scholarship from the Canada Arts Council.
He credits his inspiration from the legendary Alice Chalifoux (principal harp, Cleveland Symphony Orchestra) whom he studied with at the prestigious Salzedo Harp Colony (Maine, USA), and Elizabeth Volpe Bligh at the University of British Columbia School of Music. He received his Artist Diploma in Harp Performance from the University of Toronto.
Chan performs on the Salvi Signature harp made of 23-karat gold and precious Ziricote wood; it was the last and one of a kind masterpiece left behind by the late renowned harp maker Victor Salvi in Italy.