Apple Orange Pair is a dynamic classical duo that presents original and transcribed works for horn and harp. Comprised of Emily Boyer, horn, and Colleen Potter Thorburn, harp, the duo’s mission is to delight audiences while expanding the horn and harp repertoire. Their compelling, community-oriented, performances are tailored to music lovers as well as newcomers to classical music. Programs feature freshly commissioned works, their own transcriptions, and older works returning to the performance repertoire, all introduced from the stage to enrich the listening experience. Concert credits include the Arts Array Series (Abingdon, VA), Jefferson Scholars Foundation (Charlottesville, VA), 2015 International Horn Society Northeast Workshop (State College, PA), and 2015 American Harp Society Summer Institute (Logan, UT), as well as performance tours in Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York City, Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Maine. Enthusiastic about community involvement, the duo has collaborated with local businesses and artists to benefit the Connecticut Food Bank and Vasculitis Foundation.
In November 2013, they released their debut commercial recording, Seeds. The album highlights five works commissioned by Apple Orange Pair from emerging composers, as well as their own transcriptions of Debussy, Satie, and Piazzolla. Hear samples, purchase Seeds, and download the free Extended Content PDF here.
Apple Orange Pair has held summer residencies at Avaloch Farm Music Institute (NH) and Atlantic Music Festival (ME), and has been awarded grants from Yale alumniVentures and the American Harp Society. Emily and Colleen began Apple Orange Pair in 2010 in New Haven, CT.
Horn player Emily Boyer is a musician devoted to performance and education. She maintains an active schedule performing with orchestral and chamber ensembles throughout Connecticut. In addition to the innovative horn and harp duo Apple Orange Pair, Emily is a founding member of the New England New Music Ensemble, which highlights new compositions and arrangements of movie, pop, and rock classics. As an educator, she has been a lecturer at Naugatuck Valley Community College teaching music history and music theory courses. Emily maintains a private teaching studio, while also teaching brass lessons at The Foote School (New Haven) and Southbury Music Studio. In public schools, Emily is an Arts Provider with Hartford Performs, bringing music-based programs into Hartford Public Schools, and has been a guest clinician for band programs throughout the state. Emily is on staff at Christ Presbyterian Church in New Haven, CT, where she is an interim Co-Director of Music and has curated performing and visual arts events. Emily has performed with orchestras and chamber groups at music festivals including the Aspen Music Festival in Colorado, the Atlantic Music Festival in Maine, the Banff Music Festival in Canada, and the Institut Musical de Provence-Aubagne Music Festival in Aix-en-Provence, France.
Emily enjoys playing in Apple Orange Pair because it allows her to reveal timbres and techniques rarely heard in orchestral horn playing. Emily also relishes the close audience interaction that performing with Apple Orange Pair affords, and takes pride in designing beautiful fliers and visual presentations for the duo.
Emily is a graduate of the Interlochen Arts Academy and holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Peabody Conservatory and a Master of Music degree from Yale School of Music. Her primary horn teachers include Julie Schleif, Peter Landgren, William Purvis, and Denise Tryon.
Harpist Colleen Potter Thorburn‘s playing, acclaimed as “full of spirit and sensitivity” (Greenwich Citizen), “engrossing,” and “winning” (The New London Day), has earned her national recognition as a winner of the American Harp Society’s Anne Adams competition. She currently performs as Principal Harp with the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra in New London, Connecticut, with whom she recently performed Ginastera’s harp concerto as a soloist; performs as a harp substitute with the Philadelphia Orchestra; and performs regularly with the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra. Festival credits include the Aspen Music Festival, the International Festival-Institute in Round Top TX, and the Atlantic Music Festival in Waterville ME. Colleen is on the music faculties of Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Liberty University in Lynchburg VA, and Bluefield College in Bluefield VA, and teaches at Coda Mountain Academy in Fayetteville WV in the summer as founding harp faculty. She is an active proponent of regional harp activities in southern Appalachia as president of the Southwest Virginia chapter of the American Harp Society and throughout the state as a Touring Artist with the Virginia Commission for the Arts. Colleen is the first harpist to have earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Yale School of Music. She also holds both Master of Musical Arts and Master of Music degrees from Yale, where she studied with June Han, and a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Illinois in Champaign where she studied with Ann Yeung.
Colleen enjoys performing in Apple Orange Pair, through which she and Emily Boyer have explored creative ways to present diverse musical styles of horn and harp music to new audiences. As a result of the duo’s recent commissioning and recording projects, Colleen has relished new musical opportunities to collaborate closely with composers and gain practical experience managing the business side of producing an album.