rita costanzi

"Woman On A Ledge" by Hershey Felder

Woman On A Ledge," is a work in progress by acclaimed Pianist, Actor, Writer and Producer, Hershey Felder, based on the writings of Rita Costanzi, for a future One-Woman Theatrical Production with Harp. It details the life, love affair, trials, drama, conflicts and eventual divorce of a Woman, Artist, Musician, Wife and Mother, and explores what it is to be WOMAN - why she makes the sacrifices and choices she makes, and the devastating outcome, years later. 

"A Score to Settle" by Kico Gonzalez-Risso


"There doubtless have been evenings with a pianist who intertwines a narrative with keyboard playing, but as far as I know, there is nothing remotely like the tour de force that harpist-actress Rita Costanzi pulled off in her "A Score to Settle" at Boston Conservatory Thursday night... "

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Selections from A Score to Settle:

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rita constanzi





New Direction and Staging:

In collaboration with Hal Prince's long time Associate, Arthur Masella, Rita Costanzi premiered a new Hybrid Monologue/Concert Version of "A Score to Settle" at the Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival in August, 2010, receiving a huge standing ovation and much acclaim. Though not reviewed, Actor Richard Hanna pronounced it: "Sensational! Beautifully written, sensitively played and exuberantly performed."  Viewers have described it as "Hilarious, Sensuous, Entertaining, Engaging, Compelling and Deeply Moving!"

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Reviews & Acclaim for Rita Costanzirita constanzi



String theory

...Once the ladies had been revived, it was the gentlemen’s turn to be enraptured. Festival favorite Rita Costanzi performed another Rodrigo composition, Concierto serenata for Harp and Orchestra. Costanzi is a superstar of the harp, having been principal harpist for the Vancouver Symphony and the CBC Radio Orchestra. She has performed all over the world and it is a tribute to the reputation of the Bellingham Festival of Music that she returns here year after year. Her mastery of her instrument is such that she held the audience spellbound with her obvious passion for the music...Costanzi has spent some time in Brazil and her encore highlighted that experience. I didn’t catch the name of the composer, but it highlighted a facet of the harp that was anything but angelic. Yes, the harp can be downright sexy. Sorry, guys. She’s married.



by Christopher Key

Harpist Rita Costanzi led off the program with Mikhail Glinka’s Variations on a Theme of Mozart in E-flat, G.vi13. It’s undoubtedly trite to refer to harp playing as angelic or heavenly, so how about this: she’s a helluva harpist. In my admittedly limited experience of watching harpists, they have always seemed a rather laid-back bunch. Not Costanzi. She’s passionate about the music and her instrument and is not afraid to show it in her body language. She had the crowd mesmerized by the end of the first two bars and never let them go. The crowd was not inclined to let her go, either.

It’s a good thing that she came back for the second work in the program, a relatively new composition by Michael Cohen. Costanzi and the composer obviously connect on a deep level and he was in the audience to cheer her on. The harpist was joined by flutist Christina Smith, oboist Joseph Robinson and cellist Steven Thomas for Cohen’s Aria for Flute, Oboe, Cello and Harp. The composition is very dramatic and I kept thinking that it could be the soundtrack for a film. Unfortunately, there are no filmmakers I am aware of who could create something remotely worthy of this exquisite piece of music. That is probably a good thing in the long run. The images it creates in our minds are incapable of being captured on film.


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If you weren’t completely bowled over by Rita Costanzi’s playing with the Calgary Philharmonic Wednesday at Singer Hall, then you weren’t paying attention or you weren’t there.

Too bad. Hundreds were present and in rapt concentration as this spirited musician played the music of Handel and Somers. The evening’s first surprise was the sound of Costanzi’s instrument. It’s been so long since the Philharmonic showcased a guest harpist that the dynamic and timbral range she evoked was initially fascinating in itself.

But musicianship was the real key to the player’s success. She plays Handel boldly, phrasing in an individual but always tasteful manner. We’ve all heard countless performances of this work, yet I don’t recall any other imbued with such impressive warmth and animation.

Eric Dawson
Calgary Herald
Feb. 4, 1993