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Midori's Passion Beyond the Concert Hall

Credit: Timothy Greenfield-Sanders

The Curtis Institute of Music recently announced  that violinist Midori will be joining its faculty in 2018. Midori  has been performing with major orchestras since her 1983 New Year’s Eve debut at age 11 with The New York Philharmonic. While still in her teens, she developed another passion, which she will continue in Philadelphia.

Violinist Midori talks about how her outreach efforts to provide music and music education have blossomed and expanded over the last 25 years.

Radio script:

[MUSIC: Midori playing Beethoven's Violin Concerto with The Philadelphia Orchestra]

Susan Lewis: Midori’s artistry on the stage is matched by her drive to make music accessible to others. It began as her own career was taking off in the 1980s. 

Midori: I wanted to actively participate in trying to really bring music back into the lives of young people.  And also I saw this need not just to give this once-in-a-life kind of opportunity, but to make it part of their lives.

SL:  In 1992, she began what is now a network of organizations: Midori and Friends provides music lessons in various genres in  NYC schools; Music Sharing is its Tokyo branch. Partners in Performance, founded in 2003, presents chamber music in smaller communities. Midori realized early that no one person can do it all. 

M: We need people who are willing, and who are trained to work in the community, as well as supporters within the community who see the importance of this work. 

SL: And the value of music to her? Midori says it's all encompassing. 

M: What I’ve gained, learned from music, the discipline, the attention to detail, the sensitivities to sound, the sensitivities to everything, they all feed into my life..

SL: Still, other initiatives include an International Community Engagement Program, and an Orchestra Residencies program to support local youth orchestras. And, of course, Midori continues to play in concerts around the world.