From Emilee Hartley

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Emilee Hartley began studying piano at the age of four. She began studies under Cathy Cox, and quickly grew to love playing the piano and composing. At eleven, Emilee continued her studies under Sara McDaniel and studied with her all the way through college. Throughout her performance career, Emilee won first place at the Colorado State Competition four different times, as well as many other competitions throughout the state. Emilee also won "Best Piano Piece by a Female Composer" at a competition at Mesa State University, with her original piece Journey.

As a musician, Emilee has pursued piano through composition as well as performance, and has also studied voice and violin. Writing music continues to be her biggest passion. Since studying music in college, Emilee has devoted herself to composition, and collected her favorite works from the past few years into her debut album, Illuminate. "My favorite part of being a music writer is the opportunity to express my thoughts and ideas in a unique way. I spend a lot of time shaping my experiences into music, whether they be occurrences in the past or just sketches of things I observe on a daily basis. I have always been fascinated by the idea of light, and the complexity of it. I love the way it plays with a skyline and dances between the leaves of a tree. I'm intrigued by the way that light can illuminate a room, and how no matter how dark an environment is, light will always overcome the darkness. I selected my favorite pieces from the last few years to create an album, and realized that many of the best pieces I've written have been nature scenes dominated by light. So I named it "Illuminate," not only because many of these works have to do with the concept of light, but because I hope that my music, especially on my debut album, is a beacon of light and encouragement to its listeners. I hope that my music paints inspiring scenes in your head, and that you feel refreshed and enlivened each time you listen to it."