As the Wilmington Star News writes, “Christina Brier and Kathryn Sloat of Lilac 94 aren’t your grandmother’s harpists. Brier and Sloat hit their soundboards, pound their harps with mallets, slap their strings, and generally make a ruckus.” Since 2013, the award-winning contemporary harp duo has been performing new and previously undiscovered music and exploring creative ways of using the harp in venues ranging from the Rohs Street Cafe (OH) and Champlain Centre Mall (NY) to the Milwaukee Art Museum (WI) and Fishtank Theater (MO) to MISE-EN Place in Brooklyn and The Troy Savings Bank Music Hall (NY). Highlights of 2018 included performances in Philadelphia in the full production of Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Klang: The 24 Hours of the Day presented by Analog Arts and producer Elizabeth Huston and capturing Third Prize at the International Harp Competition in Saluzzo, Italy.
In addition to the Canadian premiere of Stockhausen’s Freude in the 2019 Montréal/Nouvelles Musiques, Lilac 94 continues to garner opportunities for two harps including a June 2019 performance of Sir Karl Jenkin’s double-harp concerto Over the Stone with Conductor Steven Errante and the Wilmington Symphony Orchestra (NC), an appearance at the American Harp Society’s Summer Institute, and an autumn U.S. Mid-Atlantic, Southeast tour.
Embracing their mission to expand the repertoire for two harps, Lilac 94 has worked with composers such as Bret Bohman (Swirl and Foglifter), Rebecca Larkin (The Juniper Tree), and Daniel Morel (KC Blue). Adding to their program of 21st century works, Lilac 94 is currently working with American composer Molly O’Roark to add to their 21st century repertoire for use their outreach workshops as well as concert programming.
Christina Brier and Kathryn Sloat formed Lilac 94 in 2013 as the two completed their graduate studies at the Eastman School of Music. The duo’s name reflects their origins in Rochester where the lilac is the city flower and the 94 strings between their two harps. Lilac 94 can be found online as @Lilac94duo.