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Gary Hoffman Joins Curtis Institute of Music Faculty as Nina and Billy Albert Chair in Cello Studies

International soloist and chamber musician takes on position in celebrated studio

Gary HoffmanPHILADELPHIA, PA—March 3, 2021—The Curtis Institute of Music welcomes renowned cellist Gary Hoffman to the faculty, starting in Fall 2021.

Mr. Hoffman will hold the Nina and Billy Albert Chair in Cello Studies, which had been held by Carter Brey, principal cello of the New York Philharmonic. Mr. Brey, who joined the faculty in 2008, will officially step down from his teaching activities at Curtis at the end of the 2020–21 academic year.

“I have enjoyed a rewarding relationship with Curtis and its outstanding students for many years now and it is with feelings of great pride and honor that I expand my role by joining the esteemed faculty,” says Mr. Hoffman. “I am equally privileged to follow in the footsteps of my friend and colleague, Carter Brey. Carter and I have known each other for many years and the sense of trust and respect between us, and Peter Wiley as well, will, I hope and believe, ensure continuity within the cello department and Curtis as a whole.”

Mr. Hoffman has worked closely with Curtis students in annual residencies since 2018, each of which included master classes, coachings, and side-by-side recitals. As a member of the faculty, he will provide private lessons for cello students in conjunction with Peter Wiley, former cello of the Guarneri Quartet, as well as chamber music coachings. He joins Curtis’s distinguished faculty roster of active performers, which includes Pamela Frank, Midori, Hsin-Yun Huang, Ida Kavafian, Harold Hall Robinson, among many others.

“Curtis is honored to welcome Gary as our newest faculty member,” says Roberto Díaz, president and CEO of the school. “Our students have long benefited from his many residencies with us, so I am very pleased to deepen the connection. While it is bittersweet for us to say goodbye to Carter, we wish him all the best, and are thrilled to have found a new faculty partner in Gary.”

Mr. Hoffman comes to Curtis following over a decade as master in residence for cello at the prestigious Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Brussels, where he will continue his teaching activities. Previously he was the youngest faculty appointee in the history of Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, where he served for eight years.

“With the experience we’ve gained in remote teaching and the investments we’ve made in technology over the last year, Gary will be able to maintain a constant presence with students here in Philadelphia, even when he spends time in Brussels,” says Mr. Díaz.

“We are pleased to see this announcement for Gary and our colleagues at Curtis. His talented students and young cellists on both sides of the Atlantic will benefit from his great perspective and experiences,” says Bernard de Launoit, CEO of the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel.

Cellist Gary Hoffman gained international renown as the first North American to win the Rostropovich International Cello Competition in 1986. He has appeared as a soloist with the Chicago, London, Montréal, Toronto, San Francisco, Baltimore, and National symphony orchestras; the English, Moscow, and Los Angeles chamber orchestras; Orchestre National de France; Orchestre de la Suisse Romande; the Netherlands and Rotterdam philharmonics; and the Cleveland and Philadelphia orchestras, among many others. He has collaborated with such celebrated conductors as Herbert Blomstedt, Andrew Davis, Jésus Lopez-Cobos, Kent Nagano, André Prévin, Mstislav Rostropovich, and Pinchas Zuckerman.

Mr. Hoffman performs in major recital and chamber music series throughout the world, as well as at such prestigious festivals as Ravinia, Waterloo, Marlboro, Aspen, Bath, Evian, Vancouver, Verbier, Mostly Mozart, Prades, Santa Fe, Schleswig-Holstein, Stresa, Storioni, Hong Kong International, and Festival International de Colmar. Notable venues include Théâtre du Châtelet, Théâtre des Champs Elysées, the Royal Concertgebouw, and the Kennedy Center. He is a frequent guest performer with the Emerson, Tokyo, Borromeo, Brentano, and Ysaÿe string quartets; as well as the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. He has premiered the concertos of Laurent Petitgirard, Joel Hoffman, Renaud Gagneux, Gil Shohat, Graciane Finzi, and Dominique Lemaître; and performed the French premiere of Elliott Carter’s Cello Concerto.

Mr. Hoffman leads master classes around the world including appearances at the Ravinia Festival, Manchester International Cello Festival, Mozarteum University Salzburg, and the Kronberg Academy, where he is also closely involved with the institution’s festival and Academy Master program.

Hailing from Vancouver and residing in Paris, Mr. Hoffman is an active recording artist with the BMG (RCA), Sony, EMI, and Le Chant du Monde labels. He performs on a 1662 Nicolo Amati, the “ex-Leonard Rose.”

The Curtis Institute of Music educates and trains exceptionally gifted young musicians to engage a local and global community through the highest level of artistry. For nearly a century Curtis has provided each member of its small student body with an unparalleled education alongside musical peers, distinguished by a “learn by doing” philosophy and personalized attention from a faculty that includes a high proportion of actively performing musicians. To ensure that admissions are based solely on artistic promise, Curtis makes an investment in each admitted student so that no tuition is charged for their studies. In a typical year, Curtis students hone their craft through more than 200 orchestra, opera, and solo and chamber music offerings in Philadelphia and around the world.


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