Emily Lapisardi has portrayed Rose Greenhow since 1997. Prior engagements include: the International Spy Museum, Manassas Museum System, Manassas National Battlefield (NPS), Petersburg National Battlefield (NPS), Fort Mill Ridge Foundation (Romney, WV), Montgomery County MD Historical Society (Rose’s birthplace), Philippi, WV, Evangola State Park, NY, the Pittsburgh Soldiers’ Fair, the Battle of Secessionville (Charleston, SC), the Order of Confederate Rose in Louisiana, the OCR’s 2003 National Convention in Asheville, NC, as dinner speaker for the Surratt Society’s 2006 conference, and for numerous historical societies and round tables. In the summer of 2005, she participated in book tour events for Wild Rose: Civil War Spy with its author, Ann Blackman. An audio book featuring Emily reading Rose Greenhow’s memoir, My Imprisonment and the First Year of Abolition Rule at Washington, was produced in cooperation with the O’Neal Genealogy Association and she is an editor of the forthcoming Rose Greenhow’s My Imprisonment: Annotated Edition.
Emily has presented first-person portrayals of an ever-expanding repertoire of historical figures in twelve states and the District of Columbia. She also has extensive experience as a singer, actor, dancer, organist, and pianist. Emily holds a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from West Virginia University (where she was named a WVU Foundation Outstanding Senior and received the university’s nomination for the Rhodes and Marshall Scholarships) and a Masters degree in Sacred Music from Duquesne University. She is currently executive director of Market Street Arts and director of music ministry at the Church of St. Paul. Emily has performed as a singer in Germany, Italy, and Austria, as a ballet dancer in the Ukraine, and has also presented at national and international conferences. As a musicologist, she received the Communal Studies Association’s research fellowship for her work on the hymnody of American communal societies. Additionally, Emily founded the vocal music program, demonstrated sericulture, and served on the board at Old Economy Village, where she was named Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission 2006 Volunteer of the Year. She lives near the Pennsylvania/West Virginia border with her husband Cody (a film director), their toddler son Nathaniel, and two cats named Claudius and Calpurnia.