A recent convert to Catholicism from Anglicanism, I admire the good, the true, and the beautiful and dream of creating sacred music that reflects them.
Faith, music, and literature have been part of my life from the beginning. I owe a great debt to my family, for whom these things have always been important. One of my relatives was a Methodist circuit rider in 19th-century Illinois. A great-grandmother and grandmother were dedicated church musicians. My mother and her three sisters all received thorough training in classical music; one of my earliest memories is of my mother singing rhymes from Winnie-the-Pooh to her own melodies.
I was born in Detroit and spent my childhood in the Midwest, learning piano, viola, and voice as a schoolgirl in Brookings, South Dakota. Having moved to Rochester, New York, I studied voice in the Preparatory Division of the Eastman School of Music and began taking Russian at Brighton High, the public high school from which I was graduated. (I am not of Russian descent, but fell in love with the culture after reading Anna Karenina in translation at age 14.) It was at Brighton High that several great teachers inspired me to take poetry seriously both as a reader and as a writer.
I went on to earn degrees from Bryn Mawr College (A.B. in Russian summa cum laude), where I served as director of the Bryn Mawr-Haverford Russian Choir, and Yale University (M.A., M. Phil. in Slavic Languages and Literatures). I am also trained in teaching English to speakers of other languages (certificate from Teachers College, Columbia University).
I live in Fairfield, Connecticut and have a husband and son. When I'm not writing hymns or carols, I like to sing, play the piano, garden, weave, cook, and learn languages. I am a member of The Parish of St. Catherine of Siena, Trumbull, Connecticut, a faithful and welcoming church; the stunning beauty of the recently refurbished interior has to be seen to be believed. Stop by sometime to see what I mean. The Catholic Church is not a private club, but the sanctuary of God.