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Heifetz International Music Institute

Mission: The mission of the Heifetz International Music Institute (the Institute) is to develop the expressive potential of every performer. Through the cross-disciplinary Performance & Communication Training, the Institute teaches musicians to communicate the emotion of music, beyond mere technical agility and to explore their creative potential.

Community Need: As an experiential program, the Institute is deeply committed both to developing the potential of their gifted young artists, and to serving the community and making it a better place to live in.  The Institute presents more than 50 concerts and events, the vast majority of which are either free or at a cost of less than $10. The Institute also makes a point of having their artists perform in local schools, churches, businesses, clubs, and community events large and small.  In the summer of 2017, for example, the Institute made a commitment to have its musicians perform as part of the Sunday worship services at area churches, providing a valuable experience for their young artists, connecting them closer to members of the community, and bringing their artistry to an audience that may never venture inside the Francis Auditorium on the Mary Baldwin University campus.

Still, meeting Community Needs and forging closer ties within their area is a never-ending process.  String instruction in the Staunton and Augusta County school system is nearly nonexistent.  They will be partnering in the summer of 2018, with the Shenandoah Valley Governor’s School in an experimental one-week “Shenandoah Strings” program, where talented and experienced Heifetz alums will be leading a one-week string instruction program for local junior and senior high schoolers.

Constituents Served: They serve the community at large.  In 2017, the Institute estimates that it served live audiences of between 15,000-20,000 people within the region through 50 “Festival of Concerts” events and 24 Outreach/School/Heifetz On Tour/Special events.  They also estimate the age ranges served as: children up to 21 years old (25%); 21-35 (10%); 35+ (65%).

Primary Activities: The Institute is unique in the music world, with a stated mission to develop the expressive potential of every performer. The Institute conducts a six-week intensive summer program for advanced string students generally aged 13-27, two “HeifetzPEG” programs for exceptional young performers aged 9-13, and Heifetz On Tour, the Institute’s program of National Outreach and Career Development consisting of year-round concerts and residencies throughout the country, in partnership with cultural institutions in both major cities and rural areas.

During the summer months, the Institute presents more than 50 public concerts, averaging one public concert per day from the end of June to the middle of August each summer, including such popular programs as its “Celebrity Series,” “Stars of Tomorrow” and multi-genre “Heifetz Hootenannies.” In 2017, the Institute’s violin, viola, and cello students hailed from 23 US states and 19 countries. In addition to an array of educational and outreach activities, the Institute maintains a seven-day-a-week storefront retail operation in its Staunton, Virginia home.

Amount Requested: $10,000

Operating Budget: $1,318,330

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