Edward W. Hardy

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Edward W. Hardy
Hardy performing at Joe's Pub for a 2019 Juneteenth Celebration concert in NYC.
Hardy performing at Joe's Pub for a 2019 Juneteenth Celebration concert in NYC.
Background information
Birth nameEdward Wellington Hardy, I
Born (1992-01-12) January 12, 1992 (age 31)
New York City, U.S.
GenresModern, Classical, Romantic, Latin, Pop, Jazz
  • Composer
  • musician
  • playwright
  • producer
Instrument(s)Violin, viola
Years active2014–present
Nicole Ann Lucero
(m. 2020)

Edward W. Hardy (born January 12, 1992) is an American composer, music director, violinist and violist.[2][3][4] He is known as the composer, co-conceiver, music director, and violinist of the Off-Broadway show The Woodsman[5][6][7] and is the owner of The Black Violin.

Life and career

Early life

Hardy began studying the violin at the Opus 118 Music School in Harlem, New York at the age of 7, studying under the instruction of Roberta Guaspari, Lynelle Smith, Yonah Zur, and Elizabeth Handman. During this time, Hardy had numerous performances around the New York City area at locations including Avery Fisher Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, FiddleFest at The Apollo Theater, and Carnegie Hall where he shared the stage with Joshua Bell, Regina Carter, John Blake, Mark O'Connor, and Itzhak Perlman. Three years later, Hardy became a student of the Juilliard Music Advancement Program for young musicians.[8] Later, he worked as a freelance concert artist for five years while studying both violin and viola at both Manhattan School of Music and the Bloomingdales School of Music.[9] During the summer months, Hardy attended The Elisabeth Morrow School of Music, Manhattan School of Music Summer Camp, Kinhaven Music School and Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival. In 2012, Hardy also performed in a masterclass by Lawrence Dutton of the Emerson String Quartet.[10]

Hardy found his love for theatre during his first undergraduate year at Purchase College. Although he was in the music conservatory, Hardy spent most of my time performing in plays presented by the acting conservatory. He composed for and performed in several plays, always in costume and on stage. By the end of his undergraduate career, Hardy fell in love with theater and with the idea of composing for theater.[11][12]

Hardy often composed and performed for theatrical performances both on and off the Purchase College campus. He has performed in Three Sisters; Chekhov, Blues for an Alabama Sky; Cleage, Trojan Women; Euripides, Twelfth Night; Shakespeare, Mother Courage and Her Children; Brecht, Beautiful Dreamer; McElwaine/Foster, all under the instruction of his mentor; James (Jim) McElwaine.[13]

In 2015, Hardy was the recipient of the Beatrice Schacher-Myers Scholarship, 2014 and 2015 recipient of the Laurence Rosenfeld Scholarship, and the Chamber Music Live Scholarship from the Aaron Copland School of Music in 2015. He also performed in a masterclass with violinist Ida Kavafian at LeFrak Concert Hall in New York City. He was a student of Daniel Phillips of the Orion String Quartet[14] Hardy earned his Masters of Music degree in Violin Performance with honors from CUNY, Queens College – Aaron Copland School of Music.[15]

In 2021, Hardy moved from Harlem to Greeley in pursuit of a Doctor of Arts degree in violin performance from the University of Northern Colorado. He is a student of Dr. Jubal Fulks.[16]

The Woodsman

In Hardy's junior year of 2012–13 at Purchase College, he started and finished composing all the music for the first edition of The Woodsman within two months. As each rendition of play developed and molded into something new the music reflected its transformation.[17] Except for a brief introduction, The Woodsman does not have any words and is unlike any other play. During the first meeting with the playwright, both Hardy and Ortiz examined the synopsis of the play. This was Hardy's opportunity to think of this play like a silent film and tell a story through music.[18] He explored different genres of music to create everything from the sound of nature to the different instruments in an orchestra. The program music plays a significant role in the play.”[19]

Edgar Allan Poe's Inspired Works

Hardy composed “Three Pieces Inspired By Edgar Allan Poe”: Nevermore, Evil Eye[20][21] and A Fantasy were recorded by Grammy award winner John Kilgore, Jonathan Jetter and produced by Jim McElwaine. Nevermore was premiered at Hardy's first one-man sold-out show “Six Violins: A Musical Evening with Edward W. Hardy” at the Cutting Room[22] in NYC which also featured Hardy playing three his violins on WNYW - Fox 5 news.


Unaccompanied solo violin

Sources: Music by Black Composers (MBC, Rachel Barton Pine),[23] Musical Stories.[24]

Instrumental chamber music

  • Tinkers, percussion and solo violin (2012, published 2022)
  • Strange Fruit, arrangement for string quartet (2020)
  • Flying (Dancing in Spanish Harlem), for Latin ensemble (2018)
  • Flying (Dancing in Spanish Harlem), for string quartet (2018)
  • Evil Eye (from Three Pieces Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe), for string quartet (2018)
  • A Fantasy (from Three Pieces Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe), for string quartet (2018)

Voice and solo violin

Song cycles

  • BORN FREE - Sorrow Home, Lineage, The Struggle Staggers Us and Southern Song, for soprano, violin and piano[26] (2022)

Solo harp

  • Alone (2020)


  • Dream Chaser, play with music[27] (2019)


Year Title Role Notes
2016 The Woodsman PBS Theater Close-Up, composer, co-conceiver, music editor, soundtrack
2017 American Music featuring Edward W. Hardy - September 2017 American Music TV series, Brooklyn College Television Center, affiliations with PBS and NPR, guest artist interview[28]


Soundtracks and original cast recordings

List of soundtracks/OCRs
Title Album details Notes
The Woodsman (Original Off-Broadway Solo Recording)
  • Composer/Violinist


List of singles, showing year released and album name
Title Year Album
Nevermore 2018 Three Pieces Inspired By Edgar Allan Poe
Evil Eye
A Fantasy
The Lovers Dance (From "the Pearl Diver: A Japanese Legend") 2018 Non-album singles
The Pearl Diver: A Japanese Legend (Ship At Sea)
Rusting Tin Man (Remake) [From “the Woodsman”]") 2018
Evolution[29] 2019
Strange Fruit[30] 2020


  1. ^ Publishing Staff, Voyage LA (25 March 2021). "Meet Edward W. Hardy". Voyage LA.
  2. ^ The Strad, "'He handed me the Black Violin and said, try this one – it was love at first sight'", The Strad, December 05, 2018.
  3. ^ David Johnston, "Announcing Our 2017-18 Con Edison Composers in Residence", Exploring The Metropolis, Inc., June 19, 2017.
  4. ^ Clement, Olivia (October 25, 2016). "How The Composer of The Woodsman Found His Passion". Playbill.
  5. ^ Laura Hughes, "Led by a Tender Heart, Before It Is Ripped Out", The New York Times, January 20, 2015.
  6. ^ Christopher Tuccillo, "The Woodsman Mesmerizes Its Audience", Manhattan With A Twist, February 12, 2014.
  7. ^ Fern Siegel, "Stage Door: Da, The Woodsman", The Huffington Post, January 23, 2015.
  8. ^ Mastrandrea, Paige (January 20, 2020). "Q&A With Composer And Musician, Edward W. Hardy". Haute Living. Retrieved January 2, 2021.
  9. ^ Zick, William (December 15, 2018). "Composer & Violinist Edward W. Hardy is Crowdfunding to buy a Unique Violin". Africlassical.
  10. ^ "Lawrence Dutton Master Class Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival". Program. July 9, 2012.
  11. ^ Foister, Breanna (April 23, 2016). "To Stir the Soul with Music: Edward W. Hardy on Composing for Theater". New York Theatre Review.
  12. ^ "Theater in the Now Features Music Alumnus Edward W. Hardy". www.purchase.edu.
  13. ^ Bowling, Suzanna (August 23, 2017). "Meet The Playwrights of SummerFest: Edward W. Hardy Violinist, Violist & Composer". Times Square Chronicles.
  14. ^ Adam Parker, "Colour of Music Festival Virtuosi play every season, twice", Post and Courier, October 22, 2014.
  15. ^ Lantz, Kelly (June 18, 2020). "Nineteen Black Composers You Should Know". AllClassical Portland.
  16. ^ Jacobs, Jessie (February 2, 2022). "He followed his passion for classical music from Harlem to Colorado". Colorado Public Radio. CPR Classical. Retrieved 14 February 2022. I just have this very incredible, grateful, blessed connection with Jubal. I understand him and he understands me.
  17. ^ SUNY Purchase College, "Purchase Magazine Spring 2014", SUNY Purchase College Magazine, July 16, 2014.
  18. ^ Rickwald, Bethany (January 31, 2016). "The Woodsman Uses Folk Music and Puppetry to Tell the Tin Man's Enchanting Tale". Theatermania.
  19. ^ Block, Michael (April 7, 2016). "Spotlight On...Edward W. Hardy". Theater in the Now.
  20. ^ New: Pop Rock, "From The Woodsman To New Music Inspired By Edgar Allan Poe's The Tell-Tale Heart", Top 40 Charts, February 09, 2018.
  21. ^ BBW News, "Composer of The Woodsman Edward W. Hardy Performs Works Inspired By Edgar Allan Poe & L. Frank Baum", BroadwayWorld, April 02, 2018.
  22. ^ BWW, News Desk (November 6, 2017). "Edward W. Hardy to Bring SIX VIOLINS to The Cutting Room This Saturday". BroadwayWorld.
  23. ^ Pine, Rachel Barton, Hill, Dr. Megan E. "Repertoire for Unaccompanied Solo Violin". Music by Black Composers.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  24. ^ "Musical Stories". edwardwhardy.com.
  25. ^ Jacobs, Jessie (February 2, 2022). "He followed his passion for classical music from Harlem to Colorado". Colorado Public Radio. CPR Classical. Hardy also wrote "Mama, now I can breathe" in the aftermath of George Floyd's death.
  26. ^ Cristi, A. A. (May 20, 2022). "Wolf Trap Opera Announces World Premiere Of Edward W. Hardy's BORN FREE". BroadwayWorld.com.
  27. ^ Mastrandrea, Paige (20 January 2020). "Q&A With Composer And Musician, Edward W. Hardy". Haute Living. ... "Dream Chaser," it is a dark comedy that is loosely based on the past two years of my life involving a lonely, broke subway musician, a retired comedian who discovers him, an unpredictable dating app and a love interest.
  28. ^ Horton, Randall Keith (September 2017). "WINTER / SPRING, 2017". American Music TV.
  29. ^ News Desk, BWW (August 17, 2019). "Acclaimed Violinist, Edward W. Hardy, Releases New Single Inspired By The Evolution Of Black Music". BroadwayWorld. Retrieved January 14, 2021.
  30. ^ News Desk, BWW (June 24, 2020). "Video: Listen To Edward W. Hardy's Haunting String Quartet Arrangement Of "Strange Fruit"". BroadwayWorld. Retrieved January 14, 2021.

Further reading

  • Hoy, William. 2021. A recording of solo violin repertoire by black composers throughout history: Commentary and pedagogical observations. Ph.D. diss., University of Georgia.

External links