Our concert series also hit unprecedented highs with the performance of works such as Messiaen’s “Quatour pour le fin du temps” and “The Walrus and the Carpenter” by David Alpher; and in 2013, with the addition of oboist Setsuko Otake to our faculty, there’s the hint that we might hear Loeffler’s astonishing Rhapsodies for oboe, viola and piano. All featured performers in our 2012 series are expected to return, with the addition of a solo concert by “new” faculty pianist, John Newell.

Another new faculty member will be Sara Schimelpfenig (violin and viola); Sara was enthusiastically recommended by our long-time friend, June Romeo. She has a truly impressive background, both in working with adults and solo and chamber performance and will be joining us for the week of July 8 – 12. And regarding staff, I’m pleased to announce that our invaluable “B3” (so noticeable when he’s needed and quiet when he’s not) finally has the title of the job he’s been doing anyway for so many years: “Associate Director” of SummerKeys!

One sad note sounds among all these joyful ones: our professional affiliation with The Passamaquoddy Bay Symphony Orchestra has regretfully, and by mutual agreement, been terminated; so there will be no Orchestra Weeks or Weekends offered in the future. Both groups came to realize that neither had the staff to cope with the volume of detail needed for these programs to function at an efficient level.

Sensing that pianists, in particular, might miss the “Concerto Privilege” program, we’ve added a new program, “Piano Trio Privilege”, in which a pianist may collaborate with two of our faculty members for a daily rehearsal (leading to a performance) of specific works by Beethoven, Bruch, Durufle and Haydn (two sessions with a piano coach, plus daily scheduled solo practice and all group classes are also included in this program). Ongoing also is the Piano Privilege program, in which an advanced pianist may sign on to work a pre-determined piece from the major repertoire with any one of our faculty. Please note that both programs described above require the director’s approval – and that they are the ONLY programs thus restricted. The driving force behind all other SummerKeys programs is still NO auditions, NO requirements!

Faculty and staff are now trying to establish guidelines for controlling the length of Performance Classes during busy weeks. This is a sensitive issue, to say the least – one that affects us all – and one that could result in hurt feelings or chafed egos, both things we truly want to avoid! Accordingly, feedback from all of you would be most welcome. Along with the new faculty listed above, all of our wonderful instructors have signed on to return during the same weeks they taught in 2012, except that Greg Biss will start a week earlier and skip one week in the middle of his time. (Please also note that Peter Lewy will be teaching the final two cello weeks and Matt Goeke will be here in the early summer, just as they were in 2012); regretfully, there will be no Mixed Media Arts program since Susan Fleminger can’t be with us in 2013. However, John Rule’s exciting new Creative Writing Workshop will continue to alternate weeks with Photography; and both Coached Ensemble and Piano Privilege will be available most of the summer, so start making your plans – the harbor seals and I will be watching for you!

All Best Wishes, Bruce Potterton