Holly from the Heart
Holly Vanden Berg - Composer/Pianist How the Music Began.... I received a miniature keyboard for my first birthday. I loved it more than anything I had. I took it with me wherever I went as if it were a favorite blanket or stuffed animal. My family was not musically inclined which was the reason my mother didn't feel piano lessons were the right thing for me. However, when I was 5, at my grandmother's insistence, I was enrolled in piano lessons. My mother brought me to the piano teacher's house. When she returned to pick me up, we were very excited to show her what I had learned. I had perfect pitch! I could name every note on the piano and I had learned two new songs. This meant that when my piano teacher played a song, I could play it back almost exactly as she had done. This also means that I can tell you what key any song is in. For more difficult piano pieces, I can learn them by listening to CD's. This process can take me anywhere from an hour for simple pieces or a couple of weeks with the more complex. I took piano lessons for 16 years, continuing until I was a junior in college. During this time, I studied a variety of genres of music. I now play- everything from classical, to jazz, ragtime, soft and sweet piano ballads, oldies, country, love songs, and even rock. I learned to master the art of composing my own original piano compositions. My first one came to me when I was six-years-old. I was sitting at my Yung Chang baby grand piano. My feet barely could reach the pedals. The song was called "In the Bamboo Forest." It is unique, because it is performed using only the black keys. It gives the song an Asian feel, which represents my love for not only the Asian culture, but other cultures as well. Since then, I have composed hundreds of pieces that I have performed in front of many large crowds along with songs from other artists. When I was eight-years-old, I began performing in front of audiences. I started out by playing at churches and nursing homes. This eventually led to larger venues such as the Mall Of America in the Twin Cities, the Hotel Sofitel, the Terry Redlin Art Center, Barnes and Nobles book store, the Historic Calumet Inn and countless others. My dream of creating an album came true the summer after my junior year of college. I went to a suburb of the Twin Cities called Golden Valley to record my music. Thus, the album "From the Heart" was born. My collection of piano originals has elements in the melodies that will leave you wanting more. The pieces are soft, warm, and dramatic at times, and definitely sweet to the musical palate. Two years later, I released a new album called the Sweet Escape. This alluring collection of contemporary tracks is good for early evenings, late nights, and anytime you're in the mood to chill. I hope to create many more wonderful albums and to share my talent with my fans for years to come.