Meet Grace Kennerly, A Far Cry's Executive Director!

A Far Cry Announces New Executive Director Grace Kennerly

The former Director of Admissions and Artistic Planning at Boston University Tanglewood Institute starts on November 5.

Boston’s Grammy-nominated string orchestra A Far Cry has announced Grace Kennerly as its new Executive Director. Kennerly, who begins her new position on November 5, has been Director of Admissions and Artistic Planning at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, where she led the development and implementation of all BUTI summer season programming and admissions.

After spending one year as a program administrator at BUTI, Kennerly rose quickly to a director role. A violist by training, Kennerly has taught at the Dedham School of Music as well as an El Sistema-inspired program in Durham, North Carolina. She reveals her entrepreneurial spirit through her past work as co-founder of Vinyl Records, a student-run record label at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, her undergraduate alma mater.

Befitting A Far Cry’s democratic model, Kennerly met with all members of the orchestra, board, and staff during the search process. Throughout the interview process, both A Far Cry and Kennerly recognized how clearly her experiences fit the unique needs of AFC. During her time at BUTI, she worked closely with a large number of well-established teaching artists, distilling many visions into a well-integrated curriculum by bringing the focus back to BUTI’s central mission. AFC Board Chair Thomas Novak lauds Kennerly’s administrative experience, and also her “sincere appreciation for the unique democratic nature of this organization.”

Kennerly’s experience working successfully with a wide variety of artistic leaders will be invaluable to A Far Cry. AFC founding member and violinist Annie Rabbat says:

“We are excited to welcome Grace as A Far Cry’s Executive Director. Grace’s philosophy and grounded personality are a great match for our collective artistic leadership model. We know we are in excellent hands.”

Grace Kennerly is thrilled to join Boston’s A Far Cry as Executive Director. In her previous role as Director of Admissions and Artistic Planning at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, Kennerly was responsible for the recruitment of more than 400 of the world’s most talented young instrumentalists, singers, and composers. Coordinating with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Tanglewood Music Center, she also oversaw the development and implementation of artistic programming of 23 individual curricula and related personnel for each summer season.

Kennerly continues to perform as a freelance violist in the Boston area and formerly served on faculty of the Dedham School of Music. While living in North Carolina, Kennerly regularly subbed for the North Carolina Symphony Pops and North Carolina Ballet, as well as performed widely as a member of the Amazon Quartet. She was also a violin and viola teacher for the launch of KidzNotes, North Carolina’s first El Sistema-inspired program. As a performer and administrator, Kennerly feels equally at home outside the classical music genre. A versatile session musician, her playing can be heard on tracks by indie artists, such as Lost In The Trees’ album A Church That Fits Our Needs, or on stage with folks like blues guitarist Reed Turchi. Fueling her enthusiasm for discovering new artists, Kennerly cofounded Vinyl Records in 2007, signing and promoting student bands in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. She holds degrees in viola performance from Boston University School of Music, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

Boston’s Grammy-nominated string orchestra A Far Cry’s twelfth season lives up to its “reputation for top-drawer playing, engrossing programming, and outstanding guest artists” (Boston Musical Intelligencer). The season includes nine Boston-area concerts as part of the group’s own series (with performances at St. John’s Episcopal Church and New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall), and three pairs of concerts as part of A Far Cry’s long-standing residency at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Continuing on the ongoing success of their recent release, Circles, which debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Traditional Classical Chart and was a NPR darling, A Far Cry and pianist Simone Dinnerstein perform together both in Boston and on the road.