SANTA FE – Feb. 12, 13 and 14, the New Mexico School for the Arts (NMSA) Music Department will host Violist and Conductor Kathleen Hill to present master classes to NMSA students.
The master classes, 2-6 p.m. Thursday, 2-5 p.m. Friday and 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday will take place at New Mexico School for the Arts, 275 E. Alameda in Santa Fe, and are free and open to the public.
Kathleen Hill was born in Wisconsin where she began her early music training on viola. At a young age, she moved to Albuquerque, where she graduated from Sandia High School. After completing her degree at the University of New Mexico, she taught orchestra at various schools in the Albuquerque Public Schools, after which she moved to Las Cruces to become the Orchestra Director at Mayfield High School. Under her baton, the Mayfield High School Orchestra grew into a program of three orchestras; two string orchestras and one full symphony. Her orchestras won numerous state, regional and national awards, becoming one of the best high school orchestras in the region.
After retiring from public school teaching, Hill moved to central California and founded the Central Coast Music Academy, a non-profit organization teaching music to young students.
She is highly sought after as both a conductor and violist, having played with the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra, El Paso Symphony Orchestra, Las Cruces Symphony Orchestra as well as numerous orchestras on the west coast. She will return to New Mexico to conduct the 2016 New Mexico Music Educators Association’s All-State Concert Orchestra.
“Kathy (Kathleen) is one of the most gifted musicians and teachers I have had the honor of knowing and working with,” NMSA Music Department Chair Neil Swapp said. “Her unending energy and attention to detail combined with her connection to young musicians make her a landmark music educator.”
NMSA was a recipient of the national Arts Schools Network Exemplary School Designation at its annual conference in Denver earlier this year, and has been graded an “A” school for the third year in a row from the New Mexico Public Education Department.
NMSA provides access to a rigorous mastery arts and academic high school education for youth with passion and aptitude in the arts, leading to post-secondary learning, careers in the arts, and lives that contribute to society.
NMSA’s purpose is to provide the highest standards of excellence in preparing New Mexico’s artistically talented students to compete in the national arena for post-secondary education and/or professional careers in the arts. NMSA offers pre-professional instruction in the performing and visual arts with rigorous academics leading to a high school diploma. NMSA is in the former St. Francis Cathedral School, 275 East Alameda in Santa Fe. For more information, visit www.NMSchoolForTheArts.org.