Q: Why is Madeline Island Chamber Music joining MacPhail Center for Music?
MacPhail Center for Music and Madeline Island Chamber Music are both dedicated to transforming lives through inspiring music education and performance. The two complement each other sharing synergistic visions for the future of music education. MacPhail is interested in creating richer and deeper group music learning opportunities and unique student experiences in a destination music camp setting. As a program of MacPhail, Madeline Island Chamber Music will continue to offer high quality programming devoted to the study and performance of chamber music, with the opportunity for long-term growth and sustainability.
Q: What is the timeline for operational change now that the unification is official?
MacPhail and Madeline Island Chamber Music are working closely together to integrate Madeline Island’s operations into MacPhail and anticipate the process will be fully complete in October. This summer’s Madeline Island programs have been canceled due to COVID-19. Information on next year’s programming will be available on both organizations’ websites in October.
Q: Is MacPhail absorbing Madeline Island Chamber Music? What will it be called?
Madeline Island Chamber Music, its 12-acre campus, facilities, programs and all assets will be solely owned, operated and managed by MacPhail Center for Music. The current Madeline Island programming will be called “Madeline Island Chamber Music, a program of MacPhail.” The artistic direction, programming and the unique culture of the revered program will be retained as a program of MacPhail.
Q: Who will lead Madeline Island Chamber Music, a program of MacPhail?
Kyle Carpenter is CEO of MacPhail Center for Music, which includes “Madeline Island Chamber Music, a program of MacPhail.” Paul Babcock, President and COO of MacPhail, will provide direct oversight of the program. Jonathan Swartz will continue in his role as Artistic Director of “Madeline Island Chamber Music, a program of MacPhail,” reporting to Paul Babcock.
Q: What new opportunities will be created for students by this acquisition?
Students participating in Madeline Island Chamber Music’s program will be able to engage in opportunities at MacPhail including performances and possible artistic residencies. Quartets-in-residence for the Madeline Island program may provide Master Classes and other learning opportunities for MacPhail students in the Twin Cities.
New programs featuring a wide variety of styles, cultures and genres will be created that allow MacPhail students to take advantage of the campus facility on Madeline Island. There will be expanded access for students of all ages, abilities, socio-economic and cultural backgrounds.
Q: Will Madeline Island Chamber Music’s programming stay the same?
Madeline Island Chamber Music’s summer program focuses on chamber music study and performance opportunities for accomplished high school, college and graduate-level students; as well as concerts by nationally known ensembles-in-residence. We expect this exceptional programming to continue. We also anticipate expanding the program offerings in the future and may include additional MacPhail “destination camp” program opportunities on the island for late summer-early fall.
Q: Who will be the faculty of Madeline Island Chamber Music?
The current Madeline Island Chamber Music program will remain as is with faculty continuing to be members of nationally known string quartets, a woodwind quintet, major orchestra musicians, university professors and chamber musicians from around the country.
Q: Will Madeline Island Chamber Music still recruit and attract students from around the world?
The existing summer programming will continue to recruit and attract accomplished students from around the country (and world). It will remain a competitive program that selects students through auditions and identifies music students from top conservatories and universities, along with talented high school students.
Q: Given that Madeline Island Chamber Music will be a program of MacPhail, what happens to the current board of directors and donors?
Madeline Island Chamber Music will have representation on MacPhail Center for Music’s Board of Directors. There will be an advisory committee composed of former Madeline Island Chamber Music board members and other supporters. Many generous donors have supported Madeline Island Chamber Music over its 35-year legacy and are an integral part of its close-knit community and long-term success. Donors are welcome and encouraged to continue to designate their giving to support Madeline Island Chamber Music as a program of MacPhail.
Q: How will the change affect MacPhail and Madeline Island Chamber Music’s respective approaches to music and teaching?
Together, the focus is on expanding opportunities for current and future students. It is the belief of both that students should have the opportunity to benefit from the highest quality music instruction regardless of ability, age, race, ethnicity or socio-economic status.
MacPhail Center for Music is the largest community music center in the country, highly respected for innovation and program diversity. MacPhail brings together 210 exceptional teaching artists, award winning programs, 100+ community partnerships and a community of musicians that provides students of all ages, cultures, backgrounds and abilities access to innovative and transformative music instruction for lifelong learning.
Madeline Island Chamber Music brings a focus and belief, one that MacPhail supports, that chamber music—one musician to a part, playing in ensemble—provides the opportunity for musicians to learn and cultivate leadership skills like creativity, responsibility, discipline and collaboration that make individuals successful musicians and successful in life.
Q: Will this affect student tuition or scholarships?
Your tuition, at either organization, will not be changed. “Madeline Island Chamber Music, a program of MacPhail” will continue to award financial aid separately from MacPhail’s other programs, according to current best practices. Scholarship awards that have been awarded to students will not be affected.
Q: Where is Madeline Island? What is it near? How do you get there?
Madeline Island is the largest of the Apostle Islands in Lake Superior. The Island is accessible via a short ferry ride from Bayfield, Wisconsin which is 90 miles east of Duluth, MN and is 210 miles northeast of Minneapolis, MN.
Q: Was the COVID-19 lockdown a factor in Madeline Island Chamber Music’s decision?
Conversations regarding combining organizations were well underway prior to the COVID-19 Shelter-in-Place Orders.
Q: Can you describe the Madeline Island Chamber Music facilities on the island?
The facilities are spread over 12 acres. Students are housed in three student lodges. The lodges have screened porches, lounges and kitchenettes. The practice facilities are adjacent to the lodges. They consist of 12 solo practice rooms and 9 ensemble rehearsal studios. The Mary Lange Campus Center houses the organization’s dining hall, administrative offices, box office, student lounge, and music library. The Clubhouse (performance hall) overlooks a golf course and a marina and is used for performances and rehearsals. It is a stunningly beautiful campus.
Q: Are the facilities only open in the summer? Is the island closed in the winter/spring?
The facilities are closed during the winter and early spring. The current Madeline Island Chamber Music program runs 6 weeks through June and July. MacPhail will expand and broaden programming during other times of the summer and fall. While the island’s summer resident and visitor populations swell to 2000+, year-round residents number approximately 260.