Born in America of Anglo-Welsh-Irish-Austrian heritage, with relatives who fought in the American
Revolution, Carol Thompson comes from a family rich in musical talent. Carol's paternal grandfather,
Frank Horscroft Sr., was a percussionist who played with the Paul Whiteman Orchestra and the Warner
Brothers Studio Orchestra. Her father, Frank Horscroft Jr., once a multi-instrumentalist, was still in demand as a big band trombonist up until his death, at age 89, in January of 2004.
Her mother, Ruth, was a popular coluratura soprano who sang with the Bach Choir of Bethlehem,
and at many weddings.
Carol, one of America's foremost players of the Celtic harp, began playing the pedal harp at age thirteen with classical instruction from Dorothy Knauss of Allentown, PA, a student of Alfred Holy. After years of playing classical music, she allowed her lifelong interest in medieval and renaissance history to take to the fore, and learned to play several variants of her instrument. During this period, she also discovered the music of her heritage and fell in love with it. Carol plays the familiar orchestral pedal harp, the bright sounding neo-Celtic harp, and the difficult triple harp made popular in Wales but also played in Italy and Spain.
Carol is currently under contract with Dorian Records in Troy, NY, but is often in demand as a side musician by other artists. In the not too distant future, Mel Bay will publish her arrangements. She has performed in much of the United States, and in England and Ireland; she has been on the teaching staff at Augusta Heritage Workshops in Elkins, West Virginia, for more than a decade, and currently teaches harp privately, and at the Eastern Conservatory of Music and Arts in Oldwick, NJ.