What Students Say:

“I liked getting up and being able to practice all day.” —Catherine Kitchens
“I like practicing with my friends. It is much more fun than practicing by yourself.” —Jocelyn Bowns
“ I really liked the people who were here and I’m glad that I made a lot of new friends. I hope I can come back next year so I can bond with them again. I really liked the music that we played this year because it was awesome. I liked the [special] effects in it.” —Ahshanti Smalls
“Harp Camp was a good experience for me. The ensemble music was fun and the parts they gave me were right at my level. When you are done with rehearsals, you get to do lots of fun activities. Everyday has a new activity. I liked making friends with the other girls about my age in the dorms.” —Merrin Farley

Apply to Prep

About PREP

The Preparatory Division program is open to lever and pedal harpists ages 8–17; no audition is required. Preparatory students reside on campus in Ernest Dormitory, or may commute daily, and present one concert during their stay. Prep students work with the Preparatory Division Faculty and Counselor/Apprentices.

The Preparatory Division is designed for lever and pedal harpists at a beginning to intermediate level, who may not be ready for the full YAHS experience. Prep harpists will participate in harp ensemble, receive private lessons, perform in concert, take part in outdoor and recreational activities, and experience fun workshops created especially by the Duo Scorpio staff.

Apply to Prep

Meet the Faculty

Kathryn Andrews
Kathryn AndrewsFaculty, YAHS Prep; co-founder Duo Scorpio
Kathryn Andrews is an active performer and educator in New York City and has performed with a wide range of artists including Florence + the Machine, Warren Haynes, Il Divo, American Idol Clay Aiken, the Irish Tenors, Marvin Hamlisch, Joe Lovano and Jane Monheit. She is currently the principal harpist for the Broadway revival of Rodger’s and Hammerstein’s Carousel starring Renée Fleming. She has played on the Broadway productions of Hello, Dolly!, Wicked, Rodger’s and Hammerstein’s Cinderella and The Fantastick’s. Kathryn performs regularly with the Manhattan Camerata, Bronx Opera and The West Point Band. Kathryn has recorded with some of the finest jazz musicians in New York City including albums with Dan Weiss and Matthew Mitchell (Pi Records). Kathryn is a founding member of Duo Scorpio who has commissioned many notable living composers to write pieces to enhance the harp duo repertoire. Duo Scorpio has performed all around the world including the World Harp Congress in Hong Kong (2017) and Sydney (2014). In 2009, Kathryn was a prizewinner at the Bel Canto Institute Opera Festival in Florence, Italy. Kathryn holds degrees from Manhattan School of Music (Master of Music/Orchestral Performance), Mannes: The New School for Music (Master of Music) and University of Delaware (Bachelor of Music). Read more about her at www.kathrynandrews.com.
Kristi Shade
Kristi ShadeYAHS Prep Faculty; co-founder Duo Scorpio
Kristi Shade is a harpist based in New York City, where she maintains an active performing schedule and a private teaching studio. Kristi is the Principal Harpist with The Chamber Orchestra of New York, with which she has recorded three albums on the Naxos record label. She also performs regularly with The Miami Symphony, One World Symphony and Ensemble 212. Kristi has performed on Broadway for several shows, including Cinderella, Wicked, A Little Night Music, Gypsy, and The Apple Tree. She has collaborated and performed with artists such as Florence + The Machine, The All-American Rejects, The Killers, Sigur Rós, John Legend, Carlos Santana, Patti LaBelle and Sean Lennon. She holds degrees from the Manhattan School of Music (Master of Music) and the University of Miami (Bachelor of Music). She has been on faculty at the Manhattan School of Music Precollege Division since 2007 and served as the Vice President of Metroharp, the New York Chapter of the American Harp Society, from 2010-2015. Read more about her at www.kristishade.com.

July 5–12, 2020

The one-week PREP program is open to students ages 8–17. No audition is required. Please read the information below to familiarize yourself with the program, and then visit the main application page to submit your application, application fee, teacher recommendation, and scholarship application.


Full tuition for the YAHS Preparatory Division: $1350.

The full tuition fee includes:

• all private lessons and workshops.
• over-night resident lodging at Kenyon College in shared rooms (does not include linens)
• all meals
• supervision
• participation in final concert

All applicants to the Preparatory Division must submit a $75 non-refundable application fee.

Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from Kenyon College, and they are responsible for providing or renting their own harps.

Payment Schedule and Cancelation Policy

Upon acceptance to the Preparatory Division program, a deposit of 50% is due. Once we receive your first half tuition payment, a limited space in our dormitory is reserved for you. In the unfortunate event you must cancel, please notify us immediately in writing by e-mail. The following cancelation policy applies:

Application Fee: non-refundable.

Before May 1, 2020: fifty percent of first half tuition is refundable; harp rental and shuttle fees are fully refundable.

Between May 1 and May 31, 2020: no refund of first half tuition; fifty percent refund on harp rental and shuttle fees; second half tuition is fully refundable.

After June 1, 2020: no refunds of any kind will be given.

Other Fees

Rental Harps


Students renting harps will not be assigned an individual instrument as they have in the past. Students renting harps will have access to a shared pool of harps for practice and performance. This system is designed to conserve practice room space and ease harp moving to ensembles and classes. This shared pool of harps will have a variety of styles of lever and petite pedal harps. If you are a prep student interested in renting a semi-grand, you can rent that harp separate from our pool system.

Limited rental harps are available for students who are flying to the seminar and cannot bring their own harp. If there are extra harps after all flyers have been accommodated, they will be offered to everyone first come first served. Please keep in mind that transporting a harp is difficult for everyone, even the staff! Our rental harps are difficult to obtain, and are not intended to be a convenience for those who simply don’t want to transport their own harp. Students renting harps are required to provide their own tuning key and replacement strings. Strings are available for purchase in the YAHS store. If possible, it will also be helpful to have your own transport dolly. More information about reserving rental harps will be available in registration materials.

If you would like to use one of our rental harps: $350

If you would like to rent a semi-grand harp: $495

If you would like to rent a bench: $30

Airport Transportation

Airport Transportation to/from John Glenn Columbus International airport: $170 round trip, or $100 one way.

YAHS provides a shuttle to and from the John Glenn Columbus International airport at the beginning and the end of the seminar. Students utilizing the shuttle service may be required to spend an extra evening at Kenyon College, and depart the following morning depending on flight schedules. There will be a small additional dorm fee for this extra night. The shuttle schedule is determined by combined flight schedules; do not purchase airline tickets until you have been accepted to YAHS and confirmed your travel itinerary with us! 

How to apply for a scholarship

PREP is pleased to offer several partial scholarships. Scholarships are awarded based on both merit and need and typically range from $100 to $350, depending on funds available each year. No full scholarships are available. All scholarship requests and materials are due by March 15, 2020. Scholarship recipients will be notified upon acceptance to the program if any money has been awarded.

To apply for a scholarship, use the form on the main application page. Scholarship applicants must also submit a complete application to PREP, including application fee and teacher recommendation by the March 15, 2020 deadline. Only students who have applied to the program in full will be considered for a scholarship. Please also submit:

Audition recording

Submit a recording of a solo demonstrating your current level of ability.

Video essay

Your video essay should be no longer than two minutes and should describe why you are requesting a scholarship. Video essays should be uploaded as a private link to YouTube that will only be shared with us. Please include the following:

  1. Introduce yourself; name, age and harp background
  2. Tell us why you want to come to the PREP division of the Young Artist’s Harp Seminar.
  3. Tell us three things you love about playing the harp.
  4. Tell us how financial assistance in the form of a scholarship to PREP would be of value to your family.

Q: What is the Prep Division?

The Prep Division is an exciting program offered alongside the Young Artist’s Harp Seminar. The Prep Division is open to both lever and pedal harpists ages 8-17 offering an option for students who are not quite ready for the full intensive experience of YAHS. The program runs for one week rather than the two-week YAHS program.

Q: I’m not sure whether to apply to Prep or YAHS. Can you help me decide?

The Prep program is intended for students who are younger or less experienced than those attending the YAHS program. It is also open to lever harpists. It is ideal for students new to the harp, or those who haven’t reached the baseline proficiency for YAHS.

The Prep program is not intended for students who have reached the baseline proficiency for YAHS but would only like to come for one week, or who are looking for a less expensive option. Students capable of playing the piece “Solfegietto” by Bach should not apply to Prep.

Still unsure? Just email us and we’ll help you determine which program is right for you.

Q: What will I do at the Prep workshop?

The Prep workshop will be a fun-filled week lead by the dynamic duo Kathryn Andrews and Kristi Shade of Duo Scorpio. Students will be surrounded by other young harpists and will experience activities all relating to music and the harp. There will also be plenty of outdoor and recreational activities.

Q: What specific activities will I take part in?

Each harpist will receive two private lessons during their time at Prep. In addition, they will take part in exciting workshops, classes, and activities including harp ensemble, harp duos and trios, harp related arts and crafts, music reading and notation, and of course lots of fun regional activities.

Q: Where will I keep my harp and practice?

Students keep harps in practice spaces throughout the Gund Residence Hall. Students who cannot bring their own harp to the camp will be offered a rental option (note: rental harps are limited!).  If students are not comfortable moving their harp from their room to rehearsal spaces, the Prep faculty will move their harp for them.

Q: What will the workshops be like?

Workshops will be held in a group setting lead by Katie and Kristi and will cover all ranges of harp and music related topics. The groups may be divided into ability levels if necessary. Some examples include how to get the most out of your practice time, reading music, rhythmic activities, basic theory, improvisation, how to play with an ensemble, the harp in an orchestra, master classes, and basic harp maintenance.

Q: How much interaction will I have with the YAHS program?

The Prep Division runs alongside the YAHS but is one week shorter and our classes are separate. Prep students reside in their own dormitory. Students will each have a roommate and share bathrooms. Mealtimes and many recreational activities are held with YAHS, which is a great opportunity to meet fabulous older harpists! You will also have the chance to observe some YAHS master classes and concerts to be further inspired!

Q: Will I play in a concert?

Yes! There will be a concert featuring Prep Division students on the final day. It will include ensemble, small groups, and solo pieces and will be open to the public and for your parents!

Q: How will I stay in touch with my parents?

You will also have the opportunity to call your parents as well as put together video emails to show the fun stuff you are doing at Prep!

Do you have a question not answered here? Just email us at info@harpseminar.com!