Inspired by the artwork of her traditional Chinese painter and calligrapher father, harpist Shelly Du explores new colors and shapes through sound. Her drive to understand the harp’s timbre among a bigger texture informs her work as an orchestral performer with ensembles such as the Buffalo Philharmonic, Sarasota Orchestra, Oklahoma City Philharmonic, and Erie Philharmonic. Noted on ClevelandClassical.com for her “impressive technique and musicality,” Shelly was a winner of the American Harp Society Anne Adams Award, and was a featured concerto soloist with the National Repertory Orchestra, Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra, and the Cleveland Institute of Music Orchestra on tour. Summer festival credits include the Pacific Music Festival in Sapporo, Japan, the National Orchestral Institute, and the Texas Music Festival. She performed live on NPR’s From the Top and was a recipient of the program’s distinguished Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Award.
Shaped by her bicultural experiences as a young immigrant, Shelly fuses her classical training with contemporary possibilities. She has premiered several new works through the Cleveland Composers Guild, including Jeffrey Mumford’s caprice, written especially for her. She can be heard on recordings as a member of the Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble, and as part of the world premiere of Dan Visconti’s Roots to Branches for CityMusic Cleveland. An active freelancer, she enjoys participating in local musical happenings, most recently performing live on “Weird Al” Yankovic’s Strings Attached Tour. Committed to helping others in their own musical journey, Shelly is a faculty member at the annual summer intensive Harp Oklahoma/Harp Colorado workshop and maintains an active private studio.
Currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Contemporary Music Performance at Bowling Green State University, Shelly Du holds degrees from the Oberlin Conservatory and the Cleveland Institute of Music.