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Meet Edward W. Hardy

Today we’d like to introduce you to Edward W. Hardy.

Hi Edward, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
Thanks for having me. I have always been a very artistic person since I was a child. I remember being in a lot of modern dance, tap dance, singing, drawing, chess, and mathematic classes, but when I was seven-years-old I was forced to choose only one artistic field to study, and I choose music. In elementary school, I saw a group of young violinists playing in the hallway, and I told my parents “that is what I want to do”. I started playing the violin at Opus 118 in Harlem, New York City. After continuing my education and studying at prestigious music schools and pre-college programs such as the Juilliard School of Music and Manhattan School of Music, I got accepted into the SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music. There, I found my love for opera and theatre. I started composing and performing music for several on-campus theatrical productions and, by junior year, I composed and performed the music to my first off-Broadway play, The Woodsman. So, I kept working in The Woodsman while taking college classes and preparing for graduate auditions. A year later, I got accepted into the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College and studied with Daniel Phillips of the Orion String Quartet. After earning my Master of Music degree, I composed more music to other off-Broadway shows, had several solo and chamber music performances around the US, and in 2019, had an opportunity to purchase an incredible violin. I own Guy Rabut’s 1995 The Black Violin, which is such a beautifully unique acoustic instrument that matches my personality, perfectly. The current chapter of my story is somewhat unexpected. The pandemic has drastically changed everything about the world we live in, and it changed my perspective on life, but it feels like I am starting a new beginning. A few months ago, I married the love of my life and my best friend, Nicole Ann Lucero. Last month, I received news that I got accepted into the Music Performance Doctor of Arts Degree Program at the University of Northern Colorado and have the honor of studying with one of my previous phenomenal teachers, Dr. Jubal Fulks. Although there is a lot of uncertainty about when this pandemic will end, I am excited to see what the future holds.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
That’s a great question. It has not been a smooth road at all, but it’s been a beautiful journey thus far. I’m blessed to have family, friends, and music in my life. It’s what helps me experience so much of the world and keeps me sane. I love expressing myself through music and use it as a form of therapy, especially during these times. When I think about the countless challenges I’ve faced, I realized they were all learning experiences. I can’t let those closed doors or that blocked path determine my future. I have to create a new path to achieve my dreams and hopefully, one day, leave a legacy.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
The majority of my musical works are classified as program music as I always strive to be story-driven. Sometimes my pieces are inspired by poetry like my Three Pieces Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe or bridging the gaps between hip-hop, classical music, spirituals, blues, and jazz music like my solo violin piece Evolution. In the past year, my original works and arrangements have been reflective of our current time. It has helped me cope with the tragic daily news I watch. I hope that my music can also be helpful to someone else.

Currently, I’m working on two projects. I’m developing a new musical about my beautiful little nieces that I will present in a few years. Second, I am creating an online classical/ pop instrumental music festival called The Omnipresent Music Festival (working title) that will be an annual event.

Is there a quality that you most attribute to your success?
Love, respect, and honestly are the qualities that have gotten me to this point in my life and career. I am always brutally honest with myself and work on my product every day. I absolutely love being a musician and creating music with friends and colleagues. And I respect the craft and its history.

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