Kristin Rector is the new Executive Director of NOVA Chamber Music Series, and we had the opportunity to sit down with her to ask a few burning questions....
Q: What attracted you to NOVA?
A: I worked in the development office at the Utah Symphony | Utah Opera from 2002 – 2006 and was familiar with NOVA. I left the symphony for a marketing opportunity with a for profit company, Listen Technologies and was there for over eight years until last February. As I was trying to figure out my next opportunity I came across the posting for the ED role. I was immediately intrigued as it is a role that makes me a part of the arts community again while allowing me to contribute and grow my experiences with development, marketing, operations, and administration.
Q: What excites you about this organization?
A: First, I’m excited to reconnect with beautiful music, the amazing talents of our local artists, and the wonderful people that support the difference that chamber music makes in our lives. I’m also excited about working with our Board of Directors, Jason, Laura, and David to realize the vision for NOVA’s growth. As I’ve stepped into this role, I’ve had incredible support from Kimi. She’s established NOVA as a fiscally sound, well run organization and it’s an honor to assume her responsibilities.
Q: Why do you think our community needs to hear new music?
A: I think it’s what makes us thrive and grow as individuals first, but then as a community as we collectively share in the experience. I believe that music is a powerful way for people to get engaged and enrich their lives. I love that NOVA strives to couple new music with the classics. Jason is incredibly thoughtful and deliberate with his programming and I think our community is so fortunate to have his talent and leadership for our artistic endeavors.
Q: Tell us about how you see the classical music scene in Salt Lake/Utah. How does NOVA fit into that?
A: I feel like I’m still learning and understanding the classical music scene in Salt Lake/Utah. I think it’s changed since I was at the Utah Symphony. There seems to be a growing grass-roots effort for making classical music more accessible to wider audiences. I met with Sally Humphreys recently to talk about Aspen Winds’ involvement with our education outreach and I learned about their approach to chamber music in non-traditional environments. I think that NOVA fits into the landscape a couple of ways. One is with our initiative to offer free tickets to students for our Libby Gardner Concert Hall performances. This is great way to reach younger people and give them an intimate experience with chamber music. I think another way that NOVA delivers a unique offering, is to our local musicians. Talents like flutist Mercedes Smith, and harpist Matthew Tutsky have opportunities to stretch their talents by playing works they might not otherwise have the opportunity to play with a full orchestra. It was wonderful to see how hard they prepared and how much they enjoyed playing the works of the young composer Nico Muhly and Mozart at our November 29th concert.
Q: What do you listen to?
A: I listen to all kinds of music. For me, music is about context and experience and the enhancement that music brings to all kinds of experiences. I love apps like Pandora that let me create a playlist to suit my mood and what I might be doing at the moment. I’ve been listening to a lot of Bowie this week while I’ve been working.