- Instrument Principal, Harp
Erin Brooker-Miller is a Classical and Irish harpist with a passion for orchestral and chamber playing. She joined the Des Moines Symphony as Principal Harpist in 2017. She was featured as a concerto soloist in October 2018 performing the Mozart Flute and Harp Concerto and has appeared on two of the Spotlight at the Temple concerts.
Erin has performed with a variety of orchestras including the Milwaukee Symphony, Asheville Symphony, Akron Symphony, Boise Philharmonic, Evansville Philharmonic, and Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestras, among others, and has participated in the Round Top, Fresh Inc, and Miami Music Festivals.
Happiest when playing music with others, Brooker-Miller has sought out unique chamber ensembles. Her current projects include Trio Affogato, a flute, harp, and viola trio that brings classical music to coffee shops and Goodfoot, a traditional Irish trio with brother Brennan Brooker (fiddle) and husband Andy Miller (bodhran). She was a founding member of the flute, harp, and percussion trio, Archaea Tree Ensemble and a member of the pop harp quartet, HarpCore4.
Representing the United States, Erin has won numerous awards in traditional Irish music competitions in solo harp, duo, trio, and Grúpaí Cheoil categories at regional and All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoils. Most notably, she was a member of the Grand Prize winning Grúpaí Cheoil in 2002, the first time since 1957 that an ensemble from outside Ireland won that category, and won 3rd place in solo harp in 2007. Erin was named an Alternate for a prestigious Fulbright Grant to Ireland in 2014.
An accomplished arts administrator, Erin is the Executive Director of the USA International Harp Competition. Under her direction, the 10th (2016) and 11th (2019) Competitions have received the highest praise in the organization’s history.
Erin received her Master’s degree from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music and her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign as a Chancellor’s Scholar and winner of the prestigious Thomas J. Smith Award resulting in a full-tuition scholarship. Her principal classical teachers include Susann McDonald, Dr. Ann Yeung, Elizabeth Hainen, and Ayako Watanabe and Irish teachers include Eileen Gannon, Marta Cook, and Grainne Hambly. Erin lives in Milwaukee, WI with her husband, percussionist Andy Miller, and divides her time between Milwaukee, Bloomington, IN and Des Moines, IA.