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Testimonials

Eliot Fisk, Internationally acclaimed Guitar Soloist -

Kinhaven student, 1967-69

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“Kinhaven was a formative event in my life.  How well I remember hearing for the first time (wafting across on a tennis court!) the strains of the immortal Schubert 2 Cello Quintet or practicing next to Charlie Hamlen as he practiced the last movement of the Brahms F minor Piano Quintet.  I remember evenings when I would slip down to the barn to hear Jerry Bidlack conduct the New World Symphony and of course the final Chorales of Bach Cantatas (‘Christ Lag in Todesbanden’ and ‘Wachet auf Ruft uns die Stimme’) mixed with the sobs of those of us facing the sad inevitability of the end of another Kinhaven summer. So I wish this great institution lots of continued success and the well-earned support of its many friends.”

 Marc Goldberg, Bassoonist, Faculty at the Juilliard School, Mannes College, Hartt School of Music, Bard College, and Columbia University

Kinhaven student, 1976-77
Kinhaven parent, 2007, Jesse Goldberg
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“Kinhaven is simply one of my favorite places anywhere. Not only is it an excellent and well-rounded musical experience, but the warmth and support of the faculty and staff in the pristine Vermont countryside creates an environment that is wonderfully human. As a musician, teacher, barefoot camper, and now parent of a camper, I believe in everything that Kinhaven has to offer.”

 

Misha Amory, Violist in the Brentano String Quartet

Kinhaven student, 1981-83

amory“Kinhaven was, for me, a crucial turning point in my life.  It was a place where I came to terms with music, which was central to my existence as a teenager, but whose role in my life was not clear to me; at Kinhaven I found a way to love music-making without feeling overwhelmed by it.  Without this important step, it would not have been possible for me to enter into a more serious and committed stage in my musical studies, or ultimately to embark on a musical career.  At the same time, I made my first enduring friends at Kinhaven, a place where so many common values exist.  I felt welcomed into a community where I could be myself and yet not be an outsider, a hard thing for many teenagers to find.  Being included in this way was also a rite of passage toward adulthood — because for the first time, I was not just dependent on others for support, but they relied on me for the same thing, so that I was pulled out of the circle of my self-absorption and learned how to take care of my friends.”

 

Carmit Zori, Violinist, Artistic Director of the Brooklyn Chamber Music Society

Kinhaven parent, 2009, Amalia Rinehart

zori“The summer at Kinhaven made me think that it is exactly what I would want my child to experience in a summer music camp. Kinhaven turned out to be a life changing experience for our daughter Amalia. She had such a good time whether it was playing the piano in a chamber music group and sharing thoughts with her peers about the music or having private lessons or listening to the concerts every weekend. I think it was important for her to see that she was not an odd kid and that there are other kids like her. She loved singing everyday and enjoyed every aspect of the daily routine at Kinhaven. The faculty was fantastic. Her piano teachers were inspiring. The chorus was so much fun. Amalia returned home and made an oil painting of Hindemith after hearing his music played by the Orchestra in the summer. At Kinhaven it seems as if it was just the right combination of smart passionate and generous human beings.

 What a treat!! Thank you for this place.”

Robert Botti, Oboist, New York Philharmonic, Faculty Manhattan School of Music, New York University, and SUNY- Purchase

Kinhaven parent, Anna-Sofia Botti, 2009 & 2013

Botti_Robert“Our daughter, Anna-Sofia, was a camper in the Junior and Senior Sessions at Kinhaven.  Her experience there was nothing short of wonderful.  It was magical for her to be there with like-minded young musicians playing in orchestra, rehearsing chamber music, and practicing together in this idyllic setting amidst the Green Mountains of Vermont.  The friendships she left with are very special to her and ones with which she continues to stay in touch.  The staff and faculty were supportive and nurturing and according to Sofia funny and entertaining especially during rehearsals.  Thank goodness!!!  Kinhaven remains a glowing ember in the heart of our daughter.  She very much looks forward to returning.”

Bruce Adolphe, Composer, Resident Lecturer & Director of Family Concerts at The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center

Kinhaven Student, 1969-72

Bruce_adolphe“Life at Kinhaven was how life should be — music-making every day, madrigals on the hillside, folk dancing by moonlight, communal meals, bare feet crunching fresh grass, and best of all, it was a community of imaginative, fun-loving, free-thinking, supportive, caring people. It was very important to me to meet other teenagers who felt as I did about music, and we met not only in formal, organized situations, but we became experts at spontaneous music and unplanned fun. I will never forget how beautifully David Dushkin played Brahms Intermezzi in the main house, while I hid behind a stuffed chair (I wasn’t supposed to be there.) I think he knew I was there, and probably my sneaker was sticking out from behind the chair. Even though I officially came to play piano in chamber music and bassoon in the orchestra, composing was my main interest, and Jerry let me conduct the orchestra quite a few times every summer in readings of my musical explorations. The staff organized kids to play my chamber music, and even the faculty played and sang my music whenever I finished a new piece. The encouragement and support of this rare atmosphere had a profound effect on my life. My friendships that were formed at Kinhaven have lasted all my life, and frequently, to this day, when I meet a musician who is highly creative, funny, spontaneous, and relaxed, I discover that they also went to Kinhaven. I am delighted it is still going strong.”

Erin Keefe, Violin, Concertmaster, Minnesota Orchestra

“I attended Kinhaven for four summers, and my experience there was truly life-changing. I fell in love with playing chamber music which has been my passion ever since, and it was also the first place where I had the opportunity to play full in a full orchestra which is now the new focus of my career.  It is such an amazing place to spend the summer, and the faculty and staff are extremely caring and dedicated.  I look back on my time at Kinhaven with only fond memories!”

Geoffrey Pilkington, Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra, 4th Horn Harrisburg Symphony, Associate Principal/3rd Horn

Kinhaven Student 1997-2000

“After just one summer at Kinhaven,I returned with an intense passion for music that became a lifelong devotion, carrying me into my professional career.  I had learned the true value of music not simply through chamber and large ensembles,but through our sense of community and love shared with friends and teachers alike.  Anytime I come across someone who has attended Kinhaven, we have an instant bond over shared experiences,and might find ourselves spontaneously singing a favorite madrigal, or dancing the ‘Troika’.  Kinhaven will always remain one of the most profoundly meaningful experiences of my life.”