Ed Harrison is Principal Timpanist of Lyric Opera of Chicago. In addition, he is Artist Faculty and Head of Percussion at Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University. In addition to timpani and orchestral percussion, Ed is an active jazz vibraphonist, performing regularly in the Chicago area. He is known internationally for his contributions to solo maraca playing and has had numerous concertos written for him. Most recently he has been soloist on composer Tim Corpus' New American Timpanist project, which featured him on three new solo timpani pieces and Concerto for Timpani and Percussion Ensemble, which premiered in April 2016 at Roosevelt University.
Ed Harrison was hired in 1998 at Lyric Opera as section percussionist by Bruno Bartoletti. He was appointed Principal Timpanist by Sir Andrew Davis. Ed has performed with a variety of prestigious orchestras, including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and under the batons of illustrious conductors such as Ricardo Muti, Georg Solti, Leonard Bernstein, Daniel Barenboim, Pierre Boulez and others. He is married to Melanie Kupchynsky, Chicago Symphony violinist, and has three great kids, Nick, Laura and Gregory. When not playing music, Ed is an avid ice hockey player .
Ed has a Master of Music degree from the New England Conservatory where he studied with Vic Firth. He endorses for Vic Firth, Zildjian and Remo corporations.