Esther Mirjam Griffioen is originally from Holland but currently living in Brittany, France.

She studied theatre science at the University of Utrecht and worked in Paris with the French storyteller Henri Gougaud. She has been a storyteller herself for twenty years now and a therapeutic harpist (CTHP from International Harp Therapy Program, San Diego, CA) for ten years. As such she is working with cancer patients during their chemotherapy, in palliative care services and with seniors who have Alzheimer's disease. For the latest group, she developed a “method,” mixing traditional story and music.

As a dreamer, she has been much interested in symbols, archetypes and their primal vibrations since her teens. Her work in the therapeutic field and passions lead to workshops in cooperation with cymatic expert Jeff Volk

Having noticed that her therapeutic practice influences profoundly the way she accompanies other storytellers and poets with her harp and knowing from experience that the vibration of the music “carries” the words and opens up different worlds, she dreamt for long of making a solo performance in this sense but never found the time to do so. During the Varda Residency, she will be working on putting music to her favorite stories and train her brain to tell and play at the same time.

The two months will permit her to define herself more precisely as a performing artist and to work on a website.

Besides that, she would like to finish her second cd “Merisier, j’étais” she recorded last Autumn.  The cd will be accompanied by a booklet in French and English explaining what’s harp therapy about. The music is based on improvisations that came to life during therapeutic sequences in hospitals and is the departure point of the explanations.