Since making her orchestral debut with the Toledo Symphony Orchestra at the age of 13, Holly Roadfeldt has continued to be an active solo pianist and chamber musician performing standard and eclectic recital programs in the United States, Europe, and Asia. Holly’s mission is to inspire and advocate for piano music of the highest caliber and she regularly mixes newly composed music with established masterpieces. With her most recent endeavor “The Preludes Project”, she commissioned 16 composers to write preludes to be performed alongside works from the standard repertoire. Holly premiered 65 preludes in 17 states as a guest artist at multiple venues including the University of Akron; University of Missouri-Kansas City; Oklahoma State University; Wichita State University; the Peabody Institute; University of Nebraska-Kearney; Western Carolina University; Carson-Newman University; the College of Southern Maryland; Westminster College; the University at Albany; Manchester University; and Lafayette College.
The Preludes Project CD is Holly’s debut solo album and was released by PARMA Recordings in November 2016. The double CD includes Chopin’s Op. 28 Preludes and Kirk O’Riordan’s Twenty-Six Preludes for Solo Piano (2014). Holly’s performance on this CD has been lauded as “utterly convincing [with]…every note of her Chopin sound [ing] fresh and alive and her varied touch perfectly match [ing] the mood of each piece — and all are conjured up with a breathtaking sense of elation.” (Raul da Gama, World Music Report). Núria Serra of Sonograma Magazine says the double album deserves “all our highest praise” for Holly’s “expression, agility and perfect articulation.” Additional reviewers describe Holly’s playing as “exquisite… demonstrating her excellent expressive abilities and technique.” (Cinemusical), state that “the clarity of [her] playing on the faster and more complicated preludes is jaw-dropping” (Mainly Piano) and “Roadfeldt plays all 50 pieces with finesse” (Infodad).
A dedicated performer of contemporary music, Holly has premiered over 100 solo and chamber works. In 1996, she was awarded the prize for the "Best Performance of a 20th Century American Composition" in the Frinna Awerbuch International Piano Competition, which resulted in a performance in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. Additional contemporary music honors include being a semi-finalist in the Concert Artists Guild International Competition in 1998 and 2001 as a contemporary music specialist. She has been delighted to premiere multiple works by Kirk O’Riordan, Kala Pierson, Kristin Kuster, Michelle McQuade Dewhirst, Anthony Donofrio, Stephen Dankner, Daniel Perttu, and Aleksander Sternfeld-Dunn.
As a chamber musician, Holly has performed with members of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Montreal Symphony, the Rochester Philharmonic, the Colorado Orchestra, and the Utah Symphony as well as with concert artists Alexa Still, Bonita Boyd, and Marcia Baldwin. She is also co-founder of the contemporary piano duo, duoARtia, which was formed with Jeri-Mae Astolfi in 2012. In March of 2013, she collaborated with the Marie Chouinard Dance Company from Montreal giving a live performance of Chopin's 24 Preludes at Lafayette College in Easton, PA.
Holly has numerous intellectual curiosities and has taught applied piano, piano pedagogy, piano literature, collaborative piano, piano sight reading, class piano, music theory, and music history at the collegiate level. Additional research interests include studying the music of Nicolai Kapustin; the expressionist music of Arnold Schoenberg and Alban Berg; and how social issues are conveyed through music. She has designed several courses for freshmen and sophomore seminars including "The Art of Performance" which explores the value of artistic integrity for performers and audiences, ”Statements of Identity in Modern Music" and “Contemporary Musical Activism.”
As a conference presenter, Holly has given lecture recitals and papers for the College Music Society national, super-regional, and regional conferences; for collegiate chapters of the National Association for Music Education; for the Delaware State Music Teachers Association; for the Institutes for Lifelong Learning at the University of Delaware and Susquehanna University; and as part of Belmont University’s Music and Discourse Lecture Series.
Holly’s live recordings can be heard on the Kosei Publishing (Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue) and the Composers Union of Armenia (music by Gor Hovhannisyan) labels. Additionally, Holly recorded the music (solo and chamber) for Kirk O’Riordan’s Strange Flowers CD, which was released on November 19th, 2013 by PARMA Recordings described as “beautiful” by Donald Rosenberg in Gramophone. Holly’s performance of Mara Gibson’s Conundrums was included on the composer’s Sky-Born CD, also released by PARMA Recordings in November 2017. About Sky-Born, reviewers described Holly as “a vivid pianist” (Rosenberg, Gramophone), as a pianist who “performed with conviction” (Harris, Winnipeg Free Press) and someone “known perfectly for her seductive Preludes Project” (Marçal Borotau, Sonograma Magazine).
Holly currently teaches at Lafayette College and serves as Artist Faculty with Distinction at The Music School of Delaware. Previously, she taught at the University of Delaware, Susquehanna University, Gettysburg College, the University of Colorado-Boulder, and Indiana University.
Holly received performance degrees from the Eastman School of Music (B.M.), Indiana University (M.M.) and the University of Colorado in Boulder (D.M.A.).