For Anne, between music and house painting, it’s a draw
by Stacia Friedman
Classically trained flautist Anne Levinson is no stranger to Bach, Beethoven or Sherwin Williams. While many musicians have side appearances at the beginning, Levinson has built a reputation as an accomplished musician and experienced house painter.
After graduating from UArts in 1982 with a bachelor’s degree in music and a master’s degree in education, Levinson headed west. “I spent 20 years in California and Arizona where I was a member of a professional flute quartet and gave private lessons,” she said. It was at this point that Levinson transferred her skills to house painting.
“I used to paint my own houses for fun and started painting friends’ houses in 2007,” said Levinson, 61. Unimpressed by houses in the southwest with two story ceilings, she started her own business and got her painter’s license. This was not an easy job in California that requires a written test. The quality of their work was their calling card. “I never had to advertise and was always busy,” she said.
When Levinson moved east again in 2015, she settled in Philadelphia and re-established herself as a musician, educator and painter. She has taught flute to students at Shipley School, Waldron Mercy Academy, Settlement Music School, Chestnut Hill Music Academy, and Friends Central. “Before the pandemic, I taught personally. Now all of the lessons are on Zoom and FaceTime. “She has been teaching the C, alto and bass flute for more than 30 years.
Levinson has also played with the highly respected five octave Philadelphia Flute Quartet and the Germantown Flute Ensemble, which includes Katie Ambacher and Elivi Varga. Her repertoire includes music from the 18th century to the present day. They prefer smaller venues such as house concerts that create a relaxed atmosphere for the audience and give performers the opportunity to ask questions about their instruments and the music being played.
Word of mouth continues to be Levinson’s best source of home painting customers. Lawyer Margy Klaw first heard about Levinson through friends and commissioned her to paint her mountain. Airy home in October 2018. “Anne painted our entire first floor,” said Klaw, “while my husband and I went on a two-week trip outside the country. When we got home everything was done. It was fantastic! I love the fact that she has a business that supports her music career. “
Washington Square’s Evan and Vicki Solot didn’t have to ask for a reference when they hired Levinson. “We’ve known Anne since she was a music student at UArts, where Evan was a professor,” said Vicki.
“We met her at a concert shortly after she moved to Philadelphia and she told us that she not only gave flute lessons, but also did house painting. We loved it because our summer home in Eagles Mere, PA was begging for a paint job. Anne painted three bedrooms and the paneling in the living and dining room, which included eight windows, four doors and the baseboards.
“We have recommended Anne to friends because she is knowledgeable, thorough, and careful. It’s also very neat, quiet as a mouse, and completely trustworthy and flexible. We also had some difficulty finding the right color for the exterior cladding as the look changed depending on the light. Anne mixed the paint by hand and left the formula on the paint can so we could recreate it in the future. “
Levinson prefers small jobs, not entire houses. “I do bedrooms, bathrooms, or living rooms when the owners don’t want to hire an expensive painter,” she said. And if you want a perfectionist who knows her pizzicato from her Allegro.
More information is available at www.AnneLevinson.com. Stacia Friedman, a resident of the mountain. Airy is a freelance lifestyle writer for newspapers and websites.