Godelieve Schrama plays the entire harp repertoire. She has mastered the various playing styles down to the minutest details, focusing intently on serving the music. Schrama has garnered praise for her clear, lucid performances, which give free rein to all the accents and nuances embodied in a given work. In 1996, she was awarded the Dutch Music Prize – the highest distinction conferred on classical musicians in the Netherlands – for her work.
Schrama has a preference for challenging pieces that do justice to the expressive potential of the solo harp. Accordingly, she is constantly exploring all manner of compositions, assessing their power of expression as it can be conveyed by the harp. This is an ongoing process, one that sometimes transports her to unexpected places in music history.
‘As an independent musician, I have the freedom to choose my own repertoire and the partners with whom I collaborate based on the unwavering criteria of quality, professionalism and expressivity. I very much enjoy difficult pieces. One learns so much when intensely involved with a complex score. What is it that the composer wishes to communicate? It’s interesting to figure that out by gradually making the piece your own. I also enjoy working on unusual repertoire and am always on the lookout for compositions which were originally scored for other instruments but which also work well on the harp.’
Schrama has recorded a number of CDs, which demonstrate the scope of her abilities, ranging from monumental works by such composers as Britten, Fauré and Ginastera to pieces originally written for harpsichord by Scarlatti, Haydn and Soler. She has also recorded various works written specially for her by composers including Willem Jeths, Roel van Oosten and Sıdıka Özdil.
Her latest CD recording, featuring sonatas by Antonio Soler, received the following praise:
‘Although Antonio Soler (b. 1729, d. 1783) originally wrote these twelve sonatas for harpsichord, the harp lends to them a lustre that the relatively dry sound of the harpsichord lacks. Add to that Godelieve Schrama’s musical, sensitive, clear and above all lucid interpretation, and you have twelve beautiful little gems at hand.… She pays tribute to these sonatas by placing just the right accents, emphasizing the sonatas’ vocal quality, being responsive to their charming details and bringing out their subtlety.’
Luister, March/April 2011
‘The Dutch harpist Godelieve Schrama gives breezy yet fascinating performances, and her supreme mastery of the instrument makes the music sing with unbounded bliss.’
Classical.net, April 2011