Author Biography
Photo of Ann Hobson Pilot Ann Hobson Pilot Principal Harp
Willona Henderson Sinclair chair, Boston Symphony Orchestra

A graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music, Ann Hobson Pilot became principal harp of the Boston Symphony Orchestra in 1980, having joined the orchestra in 1969 as assistant principal harp of the BSO and principal harp of the Boston Pops. Previously she had been substitute second harp with the Pittsburgh Symphony and principal harp of the National Symphony in Washington, D.C.

Ms. Hobson Pilot has had an extensive solo career and has performed as soloist with many American orchestras, including both the Boston Symphony and Boston Pops Orchestra, as well as with orchestras in Europe, Haiti, New Zealand, and South Africa. Active in chamber music, she has appeared at some of this country's most prominent festivals, including Marlboro and the Newport Music Festival. The recipient of a Doctor of Fine Arts degree from Bridgewater State College, she is a faculty member at the New England Conservatory of Music, Boston University, the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, and the Tanglewood Music Center. She has several compact discs available, on Boston Records, Koch International, and, most recently, Denouement Records; that latest disc includes music of Ravel, John Williams, Debussy, and Saint-SaŽns, plus the young American composer Kevin Kaska's new Harp Concerto with the London Symphony Orchestra led by BSO colleague Ronald Feldman. Ms. Hobson Pilot was recently featured in a video documentary about her own personal musical journey and her journey to Africa to discover the roots of the harp; sponsored by the Museum of Afro-American History and WGBH, the documentary was televised nationwide on PBS.

The recipient of numerous awards, Ann Hobson Pilot began studying the piano at age 6 with her mother, a former concert pianist and teacher in the Philadelphia Public Schools, and switched to harp while she was in high school. She continued her training at the Philadelphia Musical Academy with Marilyn Costello, and with Alice Chalifoux at the Cleveland Institute of Music. Actively involved in Boston-area community affairs, she and her husband Prentice Pilot were instrumental in the formation of the Boston Music Education Collaborative. They have also established a concert series on the islands of St. Maarten, St. Croix, and St. Thomas.

Ann Hobson Pilot can be reached at:

October 2002

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