Biography | Reviews

Biography

With over 20 years experience in both the harp and the violin, Tasha Smith Godinez is an accomplished musician and teacher.  Ms. Smith Godinez debuted as a soloist at age 16 and has since graced stages worldwide. 

With the harp, Tasha has studied with Isabelle Perrin, Elena Mashkovtseva and Susan Allen.  She holds performance degrees from both San Diego State University (Bachelor's 2005, Master's 2010) and l'Ecole Normale de Musique Alfred Corot in Paris, France (2006).  

Ms. Smith Godinez has held the position of principal harpist for both the Orquesta de Baja California (Tijuana, Mexico) and the Grossmont Symphony Orchestra (San Diego, California) and as section harpist with the San Diego Symphony.  

Recent performances include the Monday Evening Concert Series in Los Angeles, a performance with tenor, Placido Domingo and invitations as soloist in the Mexico International Harp Festival (2012, 2016).  

As a chamber musician, Tasha performs with percussionist, Christopher Garcia in the Garcia/Godinez Duo, with pianist, Christine Darling in the Duo Pacifica and with cellist, Eric Moore.  

A champion for contemporary harp music, Tasha is continuously commissioning and searching for willing and talented composers.  She is passionate about breaking the perceived boundaries of her instrument and creating new sound while augmenting the repertoire for the harp.  Some of the composers writing for Ms. Smith Godinez are: Michael Byron, Andres Martin, Jose Gurria-Cardenas, Michael Vincent Waller, Christopher Garcia, Christopher Adler, Bekah Simms, William David Cooper and Paolo Germiniani.   

Ms. Smith Godinez' discography includes a self-released solo album, Postcards from the Soul (2014) and her recording of Michael Byron's solo harp work, In the Village of Hope, on the Cold Blue record label (2015).  She is currently working on her third album, a compilation of all new works for harp, with a planned release in 2019.  

Reviews

"Ms. Godinez has guided my daughter in her journey on the harp since day one, and we cannot be happier with her teaching methods and our experience.  Ms. Godinez’s passion towards music and her love of teaching students are apparent in every lesson.  She is very enthusiastic, setting high standards of musicality for her students, and guiding them toward the goal step by step with precise instruction and abundant encouragement.  My daughter has a reserved personality and is very soft spoken, and would easily be crushed with a “strict” teacher.  The magic of Ms. Godinez is in her ability to motivate the student through her cheerful and approachable personality while not compromising high musical expectations.  She really makes the student work at their music, but gives them specific directions in each step so as not to make the process frustrating. And at the end the student can experience the satisfaction of seeing/hearing their improvement and progress!    My daughter enjoys her lessons with Ms. Godinez and looks forward to them every week.  We are very fortunate to have Ms. Godinez as our harp teacher, she is the best!"


-Maki Minami

"Tasha is a first class musician possessing rich techniques coupled with wide and deep musical expressions.  It is with utmost pleasure to watch and listen to her playing.  She is also an excellent teacher for young and elder students.  She teaches techniques and musicality with simple yet precise instructions making it easy for students to understand and improve."


-Tatsuo Sasaki 

(former timpanist/percussionist with American Symphony, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, and San Diego Symphony)

"Working with Tasha Smith Godinez and introducing her beautiful music to our corporate and social clients is a privilege and a joy.  Her amazing talent speaks for itself.   She is professional, kind and easy to work with - every event with Tasha is a success".


-Peggy Jewel (Executive Producer
Artist Representative for SPAGS)

"The copious notes pouring from the harp felt like raindrops falling on the leaves of a deep forest. Full of motion, yet always restful and serene, this piece evokes a distinctly exotic sensibility. The several key changes were very effective and provided a sense of renewal to the listener’s ear as the piece progressed. Ms. Godínez might have been expected to be quickly exhausted by the complexity and quantity of notes, but her hands were a model of economy in movement. The playing was impressively expressive and the acoustics of the space did not detract from the delicate texture of this piece. In the Village of Hope coasted to an elegant conclusion, providing another transcendent experience of the evening."


-SEQUENZA 21