Elizabeth O’Hara is a professional violist living in Northern Virginia. A native of Hershey, Pennsylvania, Elizabeth graduated from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA in May of 2005 with a Bachelor of Music in viola performance, where in her senior year she served as assistant principal of the Temple University Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Maestro Luis Biava of the Philadelphia Orchestra. In May of 2011, Elizabeth received her Master of Music degree in viola performance from The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC where she performed with the CUA Symphony Orchestra as both principal and section violist.
Elizabeth has also performed in several premier ensembles as both principal and section violist throughout the DC Metro, greater Philadelphia, and south central PA areas. These ensembles include the Amadeus Orchestra of Northern VA, American Festival Pops Orchestra, Annapolis Symphony Orchestra, Apollo Orchestra, Arlington Philharmonic, Chambersburg Ballet, Festival of the Youth Orchestras of America in San Juan, PR, Fairfax Symphony Orchestra, Gettysburg Chamber Orchestra, Haddonfield Symphony (now Symphony in C), Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, Richmond Symphony Orchestra, Shippensburg Festival Orchestra, and York Symphony Orchestra, as well as many others.
She has had the privilege of studying viola at CUA with Ms. Tsuna Sakamoto, violist of the National Symphony Orchestra, and continues to take lessons from her. At Temple, Elizabeth studied under Ms. Evelyn Luise, principal violist of the Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. She also studied with Ms. Alice Bish of the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra.
Elizabeth also has extensive experience with chamber music. She received in-depth training as a young player at several chamber music institutes and workshops. In addition, Elizabeth has benefited from the coachings of prestigious chamber musicians at Temple and CUA such as violinist Helen Kwalwasser, Philadelphia Orchestra violist Sidney Curtiss, and ‘cellists Orlando Cole, Jeffrey Solow, and Michael Mermagen. She is co-founder of the Vivace String Quartet in central PA, formed in 2000, an ensemble that has performed several recitals and countless private functions in the Harrisburg, PA area. Elizabeth is also the co-founder of the Altra Strings in 2008, a professional all-female quartet formed out of The Catholic University of America with whom she currently performs as violist. The quartet had its most exciting performance in conjunction with Dream Works Pictures for the release of the movie The SOLOIST in the spring of 2009. The quartet performed works by several composers, including some pieces heard in the movie, and were accompanied by a visual artist who created a canvas work inspired by The SOLOIST and the music heard by the quartet. Most recently, Elizabeth was the violist of the Fairfax Chamber Ensemble from 2012 through the end of the 2013-2014 season.
Elizabeth feels incredibly fortunate to have her dream career as a professional musician. She is eager to participate in any and all performance opportunities, including orchestral, chamber, solo, and non-classical (jazz, Latin, even rock are all welcome!). If you are interested in seeing a performance, please feel free to check out the Upcoming Events page for information on what’s coming up!
Currently operating a studio in the Ballston neighborhood of Arlington, VA, Elizabeth has been a private violin/viola instructor for over 5 years. She has a great love for music and hopes to be able to pass it on to anyone eager to learn. Elizabeth teaches beginner to advanced violin and viola students of any age, child to adult (adults, it’s never too late to learn if you have always wanted to!). Although there is no specified age limit, children younger than the age of 8 are admitted only at Elizabeth’s discretion.
Elizabeth was also a violin/viola instructor at the Capitol Hill Day School of Washington, DC from 2009-2012, teaching lessons to children ages 4 - 14. She has also had the exciting opportunity to educate young musicians as a chamber music coach, sectional and master class leader, and counselor for the young violists of the Lancaster County Music Camp (now Elizabethtown College Music Camp).
Please feel free to contact Elizabeth with any questions about violin/viola instruction, or if you or your child would like to begin lessons!
For Current Students and Parents in the Studio
*New students should bring their instrument, paper (preferably in a notebook or 3-ring binder), a pencil, any method books the teacher may have requested that the student have, and whatever music they may already be working on (if they are not a beginner) to their first lesson.
*Tuition is charged per month, due at the first lesson of the month, for four (4) weekly half-hour, forty-five minute, or one hour lessons (length of lesson for each student at teacher’s discretion). Those months with a ‘5th week’ are used for makeup lessons if they are needed. Please contact for tuition fees.
*Missed Lesson Policy: 24 hour notice is required when canceling a lesson. Excused missed lessons will be made up either during those months of the year with a 5th week, or on a date and time that is agreeable to both the teacher and student. Lessons canceled within 24 hours may not be made up and may also be subject to a cancellation fee.
Exciting news current parents and students, you can now pay me online through Paypal, instead of writing a check! Click here to send payment via Paypal.
Are you planning a wedding, corporate function, or other type of private event? Are you in need of strings or other musicians for your ceremony, cocktail hour, or holiday party? Do you want someone not only to handle the music for your ceremony, but who can also provide you with your DJ or band? A strolling performer perhaps? You’re visiting the right place! Elizabeth is now partnering with B.R.P. Entertainment to create their DC Metro Division!
In addition to performing and teaching, Elizabeth has extended experience in coordinating entertainment for weddings and private functions as a contractor. She served as the wedding consultant and a general entertainment consultant at B.R.P. Entertainment in Camp Hill, PA, a business that has been a unique and incredibly valuable service to their clients in the south central PA area. From stand-up comedians, impressionists, jugglers and magicians to pianists, harpists, string ensembles and seven piece bands, B.R.P. has been providing quality entertainment to corporations and organizations all over the northeast for almost 50 years. B.R.P. Entertainment handles every entertainment detail including researching national, regional and local entertainment options, serving as liaison between you, the entertainer or celebrity, and the venue, and facilitating on-site arrangements the day of your event. B.R.P.’s commitment to excellence means that you and your guests will have a successful and rewarding experience. Please feel free to visit the main B.R.P. Entertainment website for even more information and to see a representative list of clients.
Elizabeth worked for B.R.P. Entertainment for a little over three years before relocating to Washington, DC to pursue her master’s degree in music. Working with brides-to-be, company event planners, and large-scale festival coordinators is something she has been doing for years. Her extensive knowledge of great music as well as experience in the service industry have given Elizabeth the knowledge to create trustworthy, lasting relationships with clients in the entertainment business.
And of course, as is not always the case with someone contracting your event’s entertainment, Elizabeth brings personal musical talent to the table. As co-founder of the Vivace and Altra String Quartets, she has been performing for events through B.R.P. Entertainment for over 10 years. The quartets’ musicians are talented and have a fresh, young look that creates an atmosphere of class and elegance that cannot be matched. With Elizabeth’s location in the DC Metro area, and B.R.P. Entertainment’s main office in Camp Hill, PA, entertainment options are incredibly accessible to a very expansive area, from DC and northern/central Virginia to a greater part of Pennsylvania, from Maryland to eastern West Virginia, and beyond!
B.R.P. Entertainment has been providing quality entertainment since 1962. Combining this expertise with her own experience in the business, Elizabeth is 100% committed to excellent service for her clients. Should you have any inquiries about entertainment for your wedding or any other event, don’t hesitate to give her a call!