By Stephanie Powell
Solo violinist, educator, and music-education advocate Midori has announced she will be joining the faculty at the Curtis Institute of Music. Her relocation from USC’s Thronton School of Music, where she currently holds the Jascha Heifetz Chair in Violin, will take place in the beginning of the 2018–19 academic year.
“We are thrilled to welcome Midori to Curtis,” violist Roberto Díaz, Curtis president, said in a statement. “A soloist renowned worldwide who pairs her international performing schedule with a commitment to community collaboration and outreach, she embodies the artist-citizen ideal that we want to instill in our students.” Curtis’ emphasis on community engagement and outreach was a key factor in her decision-making process to relocate after her 14 years (eight as department chair) teaching at USC.
“I’m extremely excited about re-locating to Philadelphia to begin working at Curtis, the very institution that has trained a great number of the musicians I most respect,” Midori said in a statement. “Nurturing younger generations of musicians through lessons, coachings, and community collaborative activities has been closely intertwined with my teaching responsibilities. Community building through music and connecting with young musicians are an important part of my career, and I look forward to exploring with them how we, as artists, can all become more a part of the culture of our community—particularly in Philadelphia.”
Midori will continue to be active in her nonprofit Midori & Friends, and with the move she will be closer to its homebase in New York. She will begin visiting Curtis during the upcoming academic year and offer master classes, attend student-centered activities, and work with students participating in the institute’s Artist-Citizen program, which focuses on community-engagement. She will then join the violin faculty, which includes Shmuel Ashkenasi, Pamela Frank, Ida Kavafian, Aaron Rosand, and Arnold Steinhardt.
She will also continue working with USC students in a new capacity: as a visiting artist beginning in the fall of 2018. “We at USC Thornton are extremely grateful for Midori’s many years of innovative teaching and leadership . . . . She is widely respected for her outreach to underserved children and communities, and admired for her commitment to her students,” Robert Cutietta, dean of the USC Thornton School of Music, said in a statement. “She has been tremendous for our strings program, and we’re happy that she will continue, going forward, to have a relationship with our students as a visiting artist.”