BEHIND THE MUSIC OF
Past. Present. Future.
Kari Novilla began her musical studies with the violin at the age of four, adding the harp at age seven, studying with William Lovelace (past president of the American Harp Society). At the age of ten, Kari made her solo concert debut opening for renowned German concert pianist, Uwe Romeike.
Kari served as Principal Harpist with the Oak Ridge Philharmonia from 2014-2017 and the Knoxville Symphony Youth Orchestra from 2011-2017, and was a winner of the KSYO Concerto Competition in 2016 - which led to a solo performance with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra. In the summers of 2016 and 2017, Kari was invited to study at the Idyllwild Arts Academy with a full scholarship, where she played under the baton of Maestro Larry Livingston, Joshua Roach, and Sey Ahn in the
Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles.
Other orchestral experience includes performing with the University of Tennessee Symphony Orchestra, University of Tennessee Chamber Orchestra, Johnson City Symphony, Carson Newman University Wind Ensemble and the TMEA Honors Symphony Orchestra 2014, 2016-2017, performing with such conductors as Giancarlo Guerrero and James Fellenbaum.
Kari is the recipient of The Knoxville Choral Society Classical Musician's Award, The Rose Center Council for the Arts Bravo Award, and The Tuesday Morning Musical Club Instrumental Award. She was also selected to participate in the Kennedy Center/National Symphony Orchestra (NSO) National Trustees Summer Music Institute (SMI) both July 2018 & 2019, in Washington, D.C.
While there in 2018, she was one of two winners of the concerto competition, out of 36 entries of the finest high school and college musicians in the country.
She was a featured soloist at the Kennedy Center concert on July 29, performing the first movement of Reinhold Gliere’s Concerto for Harp and Orchestra in E flat major. Kari was also selected to participate in the Bowdoin International Music Festival summer 2020.
Kari has completed her junior year at Indiana University with the highest of academic honors. As a full scholarship Barbara and David Jacobs Scholar, Founders Scholar, and Dean’s Scholar recipient in the Hutton Honors College, Kari currently studies with Elzbieta Szmyt, Chair of the Harp Department at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. She has been selected for the past three years for a paid internship as the Communications and Marketing Specialist for Project Jumpstart, a student-led initiative that catalyzes innovation and entrepreneurial activity in the Jacobs School of Music. She was also selected for a student-teaching internship for the Political Science Department of Indiana University, is a mentor with IU Bloomington’s Mentor Collective, and is also a member of the Jacobs School of Music Student Representative Committee. In addition to performing solo concerts and orchestral engagements internationally, Kari continues to perform for weddings, worship services, and other civic events around her East Tennessee home during the summer.