Heifetz Institute Returns to Campus

May 22, 2013

One year after the Heifetz International Music Institute celebrated the first season in its new home at Mary Baldwin University, the world-renowned classical music organization is preparing to launch its next summer session, from June 27 to August 10.

New in 2013 will be a series of behind-the-scenes concerts featuring the talents of Heifetz students — 74 brilliant young violinists, violists, and cellists from all over the world. At these innovative Stars in Action concerts, fans will be able to watch Heifetz students rehearse and perform informally and will have the chance to interact with and ask questions of the young musicians. The series will be held each week in Mary Baldwin’s James D. Francis Auditorium, the site of both the Celebrity Series and the Stars of Tomorrow concerts, which also highlight the performances of Heifetz students.heifetz student

“We have the most exciting group of young artists this summer in the history of the institute,” said acclaimed violinist Daniel Heifetz, who founded the institute in 1996.

The Heifetz Institute teaches how to communicate the emotion of music, beyond technical skills and beautiful playing. Students are given instruction in public speaking, voice, drama, movement, and freedom of expression in addition to intense private lessons and chamber music coaching. For many years, the summer program operated at Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire. In 2012, the institute moved its offices and the summer program to Staunton.

The Celebrity Series will be held on both Thursday and Friday evenings in Francis Auditorium — new for this summer — beginning on July 4. This will give the public every opportunity to attend what are often referred to as Carnegie Hall-level concerts. The Gala Closing Concert, in which all the institute’s students perform together, will be a one-night event held August 8 in Lyda B. Hunt Dining Hall.

“Immediately following the program last year, we evaluated how we could provide more performance opportunities for our students and more opportunities for the public to attend the Celebrity Series concerts with performances by our amazing faculty,” said Justin Reiter, Heifetz president and CEO.

Included among the 31 faculty members this season are some of the world’s greatest concert artists, such as members of the Emerson String Quartet and Midori, who will host a special master class on July 3. Faculty also represent such renowned music conservatories as the Curtis School of Music, the Conservatory of Amsterdam, the Conservatory of Berlin, the Juilliard School of Music, the Cleveland Institute of Music, the New England Conservatory of Music, and the Central Conservatory of Beijing.

They will instruct a larger student body than in previous years (from 62 in 2012 to 74 in 2013) with students hailing from more countries (from nine in 2012 to 20 in 2013), a reflection of the worldwide prestige of the Heifetz Institute.

A brand-new website will also allow the institute to sell tickets to the acclaimed series online, and moving the Celebrity Series concerts to the Mary Baldwin campus further strengthens the institute’s ties to the college, which has a rich history of nurturing the arts, reaching back to 1871 when it became home to one of the first music conservatories in the south.

“I am delighted to welcome back to our campus these gifted students and faculty for another summer season of beautiful music,” said Mary Baldwin President Pamela Fox. “Last year could not have been better. I can’t wait to see what this season brings.”

The Heifetz Institute plans to continue its community outreach with regular concerts at the Staunton Public Library, the YMCA’s summer camp, and its noontime Brown Bag series of performances on Mondays at the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library.

Tickets for the Celebrity Series are available at www.heifetzinstitute.org, or by calling the institute offices at (410) 480-8007. All other concerts are general admission and free to the public. For a full schedule of the Festival of Concerts please visit www.heifetzinstitute.org.