Under a Star
Anne, Robbin, and Holly Crouthamel were homeschooled, and studied classical music on violins, piano, and viola from early ages. Their private music teachers included members of the teaching staffs of the Curtis Institute and the Juilliard School, as well as members of the Philadelphia Orchestra. From the beginning of their musical educations, Anne, Robbin, and Holly enjoyed performing both together and separately in recitals, concerts, and church services. As they grew up, they participated in youth orchestras and chamber music groups, won numerous scholarships and competitions, and performed as soloists with orchestras in NJ and PA. When the girls discovered an interest in Celtic and American folk music, they taught themselves to play the hammered and mountain dulcimers, guitar, drums, Irish flute, and quena. Their repertoire now includes their own arrangements of American and Celtic folk music, Christian music, classical music, and Robbin's original compositions. The girls perform at festivals, benefits, museums, churches, and private events. The girls and their mother, Gail, started their art and music studio, Four Calling Birds, Ltd., in 1999. Their artwork is inspired by their appreciation of nature, as well as the art and textiles of the 17th through 19th centuries. They exhibit and sell their pieces at shows and by appointment at their home studio, in Bucks County, PA. Their work has been featured in Country Home magazine, Early American Life magazine, and the Philadelphia Inquirer. Upon invitation, they created an ornament for the Blue Room Christmas tree in the White House. The Four Calling Birds are listed in Early American Life's juried Directory of the Top 200 American Craftsmen. Anne, Robbin, and Holly have recorded five CDs, "In The Meadow" (2000), a collection of Celtic and American folk music, "Over The River and Through The Woods" (2001), a Christmas collection, "Wrens In The Thicket" (2002), a combination of Celtic music and Robbin's original compositions, "A Thistledown Nest" (2004), all original compositions, and their latest CD, "Under A Star" (2006), a second Christmas collection, which includes new arrangements of traditional classics, as well as Robbin's first vocal compositions. "Morning Sky", a composition from "A Thistledown Nest" was a finalist in the international 2005 USA Songwriting Competition.