Founder Daniel Heifetz to Become Artistic Director Emeritus
Staunton, VA, September 10, 2018 – The Heifetz International Music Institute today announced the selection of solo violinist, chamber musician, teacher, video artist, technology innovator and arts administrator Nicholas Kitchen as its new Artistic Director.
Kitchen, a faculty member of the New England Conservatory, is also the first violinist of the Conservatory’s resident Borromeo String Quartet, an ensemble acclaimed for its “edge-of-the-seat performances” by the Boston Globe. The Borromeo Quartet, co-founded by Kitchen and his wife, cellist Yeesun Kim in 1989, is also the Ensemble-in-Residence at the Heifetz Institute, as well as the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, and the Taos School of Music in New Mexico.
Nicholas Kitchen will succeed Daniel Heifetz, who founded the Institute that bears his name in 1996. Mr. Heifetz will continue his association with the Institute as the organization’s Artistic Director Emeritus. Heifetz stated, “I am thrilled with the decision of the Heifetz Institute’s Board of Directors to name Nicholas Kitchen as my successor.”
“Mr. Kitchen’s breadth of artistry is truly admirable. He is a brilliant concert soloist, professor, chamber musician and arranger, in addition to a creative intellect that is incredibly rare. For the past three summers, he and the Borromeo Quartet have been in residence at the Heifetz Institute as esteemed faculty members. Starting this past summer 2018, the Borromeo Quartet officially became the Heifetz Institute’s Ensemble in Residence. Consequently, Mr. Kitchen has a first-hand working knowledge of the full vision, mission, and intricacies of the Institute and its program.” Read his full statement here.
In accepting the position, Kitchen observed. “A great performer may dazzle us with their technique, but it is when they open their heart that the stage really comes alive. Daniel Heifetz founded the Heifetz Institute for young artists not just to learn their craft, but also to learn how to find and tap into their own musical passion and learn how to bring that passion to the stage. What could be more inspiring than hearing what this brings out in each of these brilliant young musicians! I am excited to add what I can to this marvelous history and I look forward to all the great music we will share together.”
“It is with a feeling of both professional accomplishment and personal joy to introduce Nick Kitchen as our new Artistic Director,” said Institute President & CEO Benjamin K. Roe. “Working in public media at NPR in Washington, DC, and at WGBH in Boston, and now here at the Heifetz Institute, I have had the pleasure of bearing witness to the artistic accomplishments of Nick and the Borromeo Quartet for more than 20 years, dating back to the time when the Quartet was the very first Ensemble-in-Residence on NPR’s Performance Today. Nick truly is one of the great innovators in our field and I’m excited to help to shape his vision for the Institute in the coming years.”
Roe added, “I also have to salute the dedicated and thorough work of our Search Committee. Over the course of ten months, these four members of our Heifetz Institute Board of Directors put long hours and diligent energy into the search process, made even more arduous by the remarkable, accomplished pool of candidates – a true sign of the stature of the Heifetz Institute in the music world.” The Artistic Director Search Committee was chaired by Heifetz Board member Dr. Robert Braun of Los Angeles, joined by Bruce Rosenblum of Potomac, MD, New York entertainment attorney Geoffrey Menin, and Dr. Joseph B. Orlick of Swoope, VA.
Kitchen, a native of Durham, NC, will officially assume the position on Oct. 1 of this year. Among his first orders of business will be to complete the planning for the Institute’s 2019 Heifetz On Tour activities and its Summer 2019 season, which will be both a celebration of Daniel Heifetz’s artistry and accomplishments in building the Institute, as well as a rollout of some new teaching and programming initiatives. The 2019 Heifetz Institute and its companion HeifetzPEG program will take place in Staunton, VA on the campus of Mary Baldwin University from June 23 – August 10, 2019.