Jill Flomenhoft : Harp Diva

I know a lot of guitarists, a lot of drummers, I know a few saxophone players, but I only know one harpist. When you meet someone in LA it is only a matter of time before you ask how a person makes their living.  I never expected Jill to say she played the harp:

” You mean like a real harp?”

” Yes, a real harp.”

“Oh, man, that’s awesome!”

If a harp player is supposed to wear a tiara and a gown, Jill’s tiara is a little tilted , and her gown is a tutu. Jill Flomenhoft has got some diva tendencies.

What makes Jill so interesting is not so much the instrument she plays but heroutlook on it. Live harp over hip hop, or spoken word poetry is not something that is going to get you mainstream notoriety. Something tells me that notoriety is not what propels Ms. Flo to create music, “It [music] causes little celebrations in the the soul; it opens hearts and creates unity”. I listen to concepts like that spill from her lips and observe her mannerisms. She seems, appreciative, self-aware, composed  and I get the impression that maybe the diva in her isn’t the prevailing force in her persona.

When we meet to shoot, Jill is more than accommodating, not worried about the conditions of the area for personal reasons, more concerned about the conditions effecting her instrument. She arrives with the harp carefully insulated and stabilized for travel, unpacks, and helps it out of her car. The sight reminds me of a chauffeur helping a VIP client out of a limousine. In this instance Jill almost looks like just a driver. The instrument certainly has a strong visual presence and you get the impression that Jill has a great respect for it.

Perhaps the harp is a bit of a diva and Jill, the creative, is collaborating with it to express herself and improve the quality of our lives. Jill makes the harp approachable and the harp sings for her in return.It is my guess that both members of the duo have to play their part as performers and the diva perception is inherently required to do so. Meticulous practice, and study are required to instill the confidence needed to make the show happen. The personal investment warrants respect and the beauty she creates is inarguable.

There is a focused tenacity  that becomes obvious when her hands touch the strings and at the same time joy. It is such a natural pairing that the whole thing becomes clear. The diva is something we create but Jill is in fact a star. She is talent, intrigue, and passion coupled with tuned architecture. If there is any diva it is the music, that captivates us and demands our attention. It is that product of the duo that lends them the diva tendencies alike. The risks she takes pay off in her freedom and you recognize that the moment that she speaks.

Contact Jill via harpdiva@pacbell.net

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