Dr. Angela Schwarzkopf, DMA, M.Mus, B.Mus

About Angela

Dr. Angela Schwarzkopf is a professional freelance harpist and teacher in the greater Toronto area. President of the Toronto Chapter of the American Harp Society, Angela is the first harpist to complete a Doctorate of Music in Harp Performance in Canada. Angela maintains an active teaching studio and is also a course instructor at the University of Toronto and the Glenn Gould School. As a juror, Angela has adjudicated for recitals, juries, chamber music, orchestral exams, and auditions of all kinds. This season Angela can be seen performing with the Niagara Symphony Orchestra, the Kingston Symphony, the Talisker Players, and at the Stratford Festival, among other orchestras and ensembles. An advocate for new music, Angela works with a number of composers on a regular bases. Most recently her live recording of Attach by Monica Pearce was heard on NewYork's WXQR. In her spare time Angela enjoys writing for the international publication, Harp Column.

Phylosophy Of Teaching

My students have ranged from the young age of three to over eighty years old. In addition, at the University level, I have given supplementary lessons, in-orchestra coaching, chamber coaching, adjudicated recitals and juries, taught group classes, and instructed courses.

"My teaching philosophy springs from my own student experience. In addition to emphasizing the elements I felt were most important in my learning, I looked for the gaps in my education and how I overcame them as a student.

The main goal for my teaching is to equip my students with the tools to become teachers of themselves. By creating an open learning space that allows for dialogue and by intellectually stimulating and expanding my students' concepts of the learning process, I am able to achieve this. Through goal setting I challenge them and ultimately help them to reach their goals, teaching them the value of perseverance that breeds success.

As a teacher I value the ability to communicate with my students. Often students can become intimidated by their teacher and as such tend to not question the "why's" and "how's" of the learning process. By creating open communication, I am able to reach my students on a deeper level. I view myself more as a coach or facilitator in the learning process, although I can adapt my role to fit the needs of my students, if for instance they require a more directed approach.

It is my aim to inspire my students with my own performance and research. Through my active professional performance schedule as a freelance musician, I am able to show how a performer can be successful in many areas from solo recitals, to chamber music, orchestral work, and beyond. My doctoral research has allowed me a profound understanding of the twentieth-century harp repertoire (during which the modern harp flourished), which is a great asset to my teaching, and translates well into my comprehension and approach to all harp music."

For over ten years I have been teaching music privately, through music schools, and at the University level. My students have ranged from the young age of three to over eighty years old. In addition, at the University level, I have given supplementary lessons, in-orchestra coaching, chamber coaching, adjudicated recitals and juries, taught group classes, and instructed courses. I have spent time observing my postgraduate teacher giving lessons to different levels of students, and assessing how she adjusted her teaching style to meet the needs of all her students. During the doctorate I have taken courses geared towards developing curriculum and pedagogy, which have been put into practice through the course I created and taught alongside Judy Loman. Through my own varied teaching and performance experiences, my concept of teaching has been further influenced and has allowed me to develop my teaching method to meet a variety of needs.

—Angela Schwarzkopf

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