Harpsichord & Organ
Praised as “a refined and elegant performer” by the Boston Musical Intelligencer, harpsichordist and organist Dr. Paula Maust performs extensively as a soloist and chamber musician across North America. She is a co-director of both Burning River Baroque and Musica Spira and is dedicated to edgy concert programming and lectures connecting baroque music to current social issues including the #MeToo movement, women’s empowerment, refugees, and environmental concerns. This season’s projects include “The Ugly Virtuosa,” “Witches: Revered and Reviled,” and “A Mad, Burning Desire.” Other recent collaborations include performances with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Tempesta di Mare, the Washington Bach Consort, Modern Musick, the Handel Choir of Baltimore, Third Practice, and the Virginia Symphony. Her solo engagements have included the Baltimore Bach Marathon, the Baroque Bonanza, the Lycoming College concert series, and concerti with the Baltimore Baroque Band. She has also worked as a staff accompanist and continuo coach at the Oberlin Baroque Performance Academy and as an accompanist and assistant music director for the baroque opera at the Amherst Early Music Festival.
Paula has been a faculty member at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County since 2016 where she teaches harpsichord, organ, music theory, keyboard skills, and music history courses. She also teaches music theory and aural skills at the Johns Hopkins University. An advocate for conducting dramatic early modern works from the keyboard, she directed a program of baroque opera scenes in collaboration with UMBC’s Collegium Musicum and Opera Workshop and was the assistant music director for Purcell’s Dido & Aeneas and The Fairy-Queen with the Peabody Institute’s historical performance department. Upcoming opera projects will focus on twenty-first century recreations and recordings of baroque operas that have not been performed since their premieres, including François Bouvard’s 1702 Médus, roi des Mèdes.
Paula recently completed a doctorate degree in harpsichord at Peabody, where she was the recipient of the Dean’s DMA fellowship. Committed to both performance and scholarship, her primary research areas include the reception history of 17th-century female professional musicians, early modern society’s fascination with unconventional women, and the relationship between curiosity and technological innovation in 17th-century north German pipe organ design. This fall she will be presenting “Turing the Madwoman Upside Down: Perspectives on the Poor Reception of Letitia Cross in The Comical History of Don Quixote” at the annual meeting of the American Musicological Society. Paula earned Master of Music degrees in harpsichord and organ from Peabody and the Cleveland Institute of Music, respectively, and she completed her Bachelor of Music degree in church music/organ at Valparaiso University. Her teachers have included Adam Pearl, Webb Wiggins, Todd Wilson, and Lorraine Brugh. More info can be found at www.paulamaust.com
photo by Josefien Stoppelenburg