Serena Harnack Shows Her Musical Talent at an Early Age
The 12-year-old Glen Ellyn violinist says she feels happy when she performs.
Meet 12-year-old Serena Harnack from Glen Ellyn. She is a 7th-grader at St. Petronille School. Serena is an incredibly talented violinist. She began playing the violin when she was just 4 years old. She began taking lessons at that age and has had three different teachers along the way. Serena has never missed a day of practice in her eight-year career. Serena auditioned and was accepted into the Youth Symphony of DuPage when she was just 7 years old.
Serena is also a scholarship recipient of the Music Institute of Chicago’s Academy program for gifted pre-college musicians where she studies privately with MIC artist faculty member Almita Vamos. Serena was the featured artist on a one-hour live show called “Introductions” at the WFMT/98.7 studios in Chicago this past October.
She has also performed at Ganz Hall in Chicago, The Chicago Cultural Center, Nichols Hall in Evanston, Bennett-Gordon Hall at Ravinia, Wentz Hall and Pfeiffer Hall in Naperville, Michelson Hall in Stevens Point, WI, and throughout New York City, Puerto Rico, Michigan, Kansas, New Hampshire, Minnesota and Tennessee to name just a few places!
Serena has taken master classes with musicians Rachel Barton-Pine, Michael McLean, Stephen Clapp, Simon James and many other amazing teachers and musicians. She also performs the Messiah and Mass at St. Petronille, as well as other area churches and performs in many community service concerts at local retirement homes and hospitals and for fundraisers.
Serena loves violin because she enjoys competing, performing, and she loves to travel on tour where she can play for different people all over the country. Her favorite thing about playing is the happy feeling she gets while performing and the tense feeling she gets while competing. Her least favorite aspect is when she has to find enough pieces/techniques to fill her practice period.
In the future Serena hopes to be an international performer, while giving private lessons to others along the way. When she is not playing violin, she enjoys cheerleading, singing, dancing and acting. Serena also sings in show choir and school musicals and enjoys art, ice skating and her two cats!
In addition to the violin, Serena is well versed in the viola, flute and piano as well as being quite talented with the fiddle. She also played in her parents' disco band, 7Deez, at Navy Pier and several other venues. Serena’s accomplishments in this article are just a snap shot of her extremely impressive bio. She was won numerous awards and has enjoyed participating in summer programs for highly gifted violinists where just 12 students were invited to attend.
Serena is an amazing young girl with an incredibly special talent. I am quite sure we will enjoy her musical performances for years to come. If you would like to see her in person, she has several upcoming performances. She will be performing Thursday, Feb. 24 at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. as a solo with the Lake Forest Symphony in its 2011 Youth Concert at Rosalind Franklin University in North Chicago. She will also perform Tuesday through Friday, April 12-15at both 9:45 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. as a violinist with the Insieme Trio as they perform with the Elgin Symphony Orchestra at the Hemmens Theater in Elgin. There is also a Saturday performance with the trio.
Do you know someone with a wonderful talent? E-mail me and let me know so we can share it with our community!