The story of Whispering Roses: the name

Part one, officially, of the story of Whispering Roses!

We grew up playing music together. We started lessons at Harmony Road Music at young ages. Our dad found an experienced folk musician (Terry Prohaska) to coach us along. In 2005, Terry referred a wedding to us – the Bisceglia sisters – and we played our first wedding professionally. Yes, I was paid to play. I had just had my 11th birthday.


we played for three weddings that year

Bisceglia is an incredibly hard name to pronounce, unless you are from the Apulia region of Italy ( So, we knew we needed to name for our foursome. We had brainstorming sessions in the begging of 2006, and Janna kept a list of possiblilities. This list included titles like Elegant Heirs, Vivacious Violets, and Saucy Serenaders. Noah voted for the last title. Nothing seemed to fit. Then, Janna, somehow inspired, came up with Whispering Roses. It felt right. We anxiously called our aunt and uncle (actors/writers in LA) for an opinon, and they loved it. I still remember my aunt’s voice over the phone “It’s perfect! I love it!”. 

It stuck.

People refer to us as the Roses and we fully identify with that title. Noah joined us and we kept the name, joking about whether to add something (like thistle!) to include him. Honestly, though, just because the title includes something floral, it doesn’t need to signify that it’s a feminine, sister-only band. 

A few years, ago, while strolling through a farmers’ market, someone came up to me and said, “Are you one of Whispering Roses?”. “Yes!!”, I replied. To myself, I celebrated how this title has stayed with us. People know us by it. We’re remember and known by it. It’s pronounceable. And it’s a big part of our band’s identity. 


The story of Whispering Roses: part before the first

In 2006, we named ourselves and became Whispering Roses, a sister quartet.


Whispering Roses in the early years. This, one of our first publicity photos, was taken by our mom.

This is the first post in a series sharing the history of Whispering Roses. I’m digging up old memories and photos, and will share my findings. 

Next week I will share the story behind the name Whispering Roses.



Janna & Luke: a Rose given in Marriage

What on earth happened? This blog has been sadly neglected! With the engagement and marriage of Janna, our harpist, change is in the air for Whispering Roses. We couldn’t be more thrilled for Luke and Janna. They are awesome together. We continue to love music and are booking concerts and performances for the spring and summer (more on those coming soon). For now, I will share a few wedding photos! Her adventures are an her blog:


Janna and Luke were married on February 7th, 2015.


Family photo.


Wedding party. It was so special for each of us to be a part of this glorious day.


The four sisters who form Whispering Roses. Did you know that Janna was the one who came up with the name for our band?

It was a beautiful day, and an important new chapter begins for Janna and Luke. It’s a new chapter for Sarah, Krista, Noah and I as well, as we navigate decisions with the band now that Janna is moving out of town. Check back as I resurrect this blog and let you know what’s in store for Whispering Roses in 2015!

I want to give a shout out to Kamirin of Crooked Stream photography, who did an incredible job with the photos, and Kim of Fetching Florals, whose flowers were beyond-stunning.

Cheers until next time,

Concert in Review: The Dunn Mountain Boys

IMG_0026 (800x533)We had a great time at the concert with the Dunn Mountain Boys. Our audience enjoyed the contrasting, yet complementary program!

IMG_0023 (800x533)Issac takes a solo!

IMG_0021 (800x533)Caleb taking the lead on the fiddle!

IMG_0015 (800x533)Luke sings lead!

IMG_0033 (800x533)Luke on the banjo.

IMG_0006 (800x533)The Engell brothers singing three part harmony!

IMG_0037 (800x533)We played These Are My Mountains and Wherever You Are together at the end. We had a fantastic time and hope to do it again!

2013 Grotto Performance

Wow! It is hard to believe we closed 2013 with 10th annual performance at the Grotto’s Christmas Festival of Lights! It has become a memorable tradition, appreciated by us and our fans alike.

IMG_0487 (800x533)Mom on the tambourine!

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IMG_0474 (800x533)Singing one of our favorites – The Wexford Carol.  I love the acoustics of the chapel as we sing the old, old carols!

IMG_0466 (800x533)We wore our Renaissance costumes which we each made!

Celtic Concerto Concert

After much preparation, the Celtic Concerto concert was a huge success! I’m incredibly grateful to each of the fantastic musicians who made the music sound so lovely, and to our wonderful audience who filled the house.  Everyone enjoyed the variety of instrumental combinations.

IMG_0429 (800x533)The entire group of musicians

IMG_0358 (800x533)We girls opened the concert with our Celtic Christmas music!  We loved being able to play without a sound system, thanks to the beautiful natural acoustics of the Canby Wedding Chapel.

IMG_0352 (800x533)And yes, Noah was a part of the performance!

IMG_0368 (800x533)We enjoyed delving into classical music by playing a unique arrangement of several movements from a Corelli Sonata.

IMG_0343 (800x533)Sarah and Ross played a beautiful arrangement of Silent Night.

IMG_0374 (800x533)Who would have thought that harp and soprano sax would be a combo – but they were absolutely lovey on Still, Still, Still.

IMG_0370 (800x533)And they managed to convince me to play a pedal harp solo!

IMG_0380 (800x533)Kathrina, Bethany, Ashley and Maren did a beautiful job with a string quartet medley of Christmas songs.

IMG_0394 (800x533)The Concerto! It was so helpful to have Stephanie conduct! IMG_0391 (800x533)It was a dream come true for me to be able to perform Laura Zaerr’s Celtic Concerto at a Whispering Roses concert!

IMG_0427 (800x533)I was so pleased with the group of musicians. Each person brought excellence to the performance. I’d be delighted to work with them again anytime!

Masquerade Ball

After hearing us play at the 2013 Homeschool Alumni English Country Dance, Laura Hatch, the caller for Set To Music English Country Dancing asked us if we would play for some of her balls! We often attend as dancers, but it was very enjoyable to be able to provide live music for one of the dance sets. 1421267_10152082846534516_1880450102_o (751x800)Dressed and ready to play! Krista learned how to do face painting especially for this ball.  We loved the way they turned out!

IMG_0224 (800x533)Ready to play

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At the harp

1403005_10152082846464516_1060797172_o (800x445)We can see Sarah in this one!

1483855_10152082843984516_1161435386_o (800x657)The dance caller’s daughter trying her hand at the piano!

886740_10152082844679516_604667601_o (800x532)Some of the other dancers

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IMG_0200 (800x533)Noah also came and danced!  Can you guess who he is representing?

Yachats Celtic Festival 2013

20131109_153452_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-016) (800x531)We were thrilled to be a part of the 2013 Yachats Celtic Festival. We had planned on attending several years before, but didn’t end up making it until we were asked to perform there this November!  We had a wonderful weekend listening to other fantastic Celtic musicians, walking along the beach and teaching an Irish dance workshop and ceili.IMG_0159 (800x533)One of the best parts about performing at Yachats was getting up early and walking along the beach before breakfast each morning!

IMG_0157 (800x533)Then we got to use our “musician” badges to enter hidden back rooms and receive special privileges!

IMG_0115 (800x533)We were the featured concert on Saturday afternoon. Yachats had a great team of people running the sound and lighting, making for a smooth set up and enjoyable performance! Special thanks to Chris Graamans for the performing photos!

20131109_160934_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-036) (800x531) Kathrina making her violin sing20131109_155347_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-026) (800x531) Krista feeling the moment20131109_154954_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-025) (800x531) Noah providing that solid back up that he does so well!20131109_154554_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-023) (800x531) Noah singing his solo20131109_153228_celtic festival_01-(ZF-3065-02252-1-015) (800x531) Playing my bodhran20131109_151426_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-008) (800x531) Krista with her Desert Rose autoharp

20131109_150829_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-006) (531x800)Playing my harp

20131109_154349_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-022) (800x531)A humorous moment on stage!20131109_150749_celtic festival-(ZF-3065-02252-1-005) (800x533)Group shot!

IMG_0147 (800x533) We enjoyed meeting Seamus and learning about his detailed period outfit!IMG_0168 (800x533)

IMG_0161 (800x533)The beautiful coastline!IMG_0150 (800x533)A quiet moment at the end of a full day!

Videos of Whispering Roses and The Josties

We had a wonderful time at our joint concert with the Josties in October!  We played a set of music, they played a set and we ended doing one impromptu song together. One of my friends got some video footage of the concert, so if you missed it, here is a little taste! A special thanks to each of you who came and made the concert possible.