December 1, 2013

Bowdoin music festival chooses new leaders

A team of brothers will take over for founder Lewis Kaplan

From staff reports

The Bowdoin International Music Festival has turned to a pair of brothers with deep festival roots to take over for founding director Lewis Kaplan following the 50th-anniversary season in 2014.

click image to enlarge

Phillip, left, and David Ying (with other members of the Ying Quartet, Janet Ying and Ayano Ninomaya, right) will replace Lewis Kaplan, founding director of the Bowdoin International Music Festival, in 2014.

Courtesy photos

Lewis Kaplan

David and Phillip Ying have been hired as co-artistic directors.

The Ying brothers are the cellist and violist of the Grammy Award-winning Ying Quartet. The quartet has been part of the Bowdoin faculty for 10 years.

They have performed in many of the world’s most prestigious halls, including Carnegie Hall in New York and the Sydney Opera House in Australia. The Yings are associate professors at the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester, where they serve, with fellow quartet members Ayano Ninomiya and Janet Ying, as the faculty quartet in residence.

The hiring marks the second time an arts institution associated with Bowdoin College in Brunswick has hired co-directors. Earlier this year, the Bowdoin Museum of Art hired husband and wife Frank and Anne Goodyear. The Bowdoin International Music Festival operates independently of the college, and uses its facilities for its summer festival.

In a statement, the Yings saluted what they called Kaplan’s “extraordinary leadership” over the past 49 years. “To start a festival, to sustain it for half a century, and to have consistently raised its profile to become one of the most respected international music festivals in the world is a testament to Lewis’s artistic vision and immense personal gifts,” the brothers said.

With the quartet, they have maintained a commitment to new music through their LifeMusic commissioning project.

As a solo cellist, David Ying has been a prize-winner in the Naumburg International Violoncello Competition and the Washington International Competition. He has also been active as a recitalist with his wife, pianist Elinor Freer, and together they direct the Skaneateles Festival.

Phillip Ying has served as president of Chamber Music America and is currently the chair of the chamber music department at Eastman.

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