Duke String School: About Us
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Duke String School: About Us

Every Saturday students from around the
Triangle come to the Duke Music Department to play music. This has been
happening for 50 years. Founded with 30 students in 1967 by Dorothy Kitchen, DUSS has now grown to 11 teachers leading 250 students participating in 10 ensembles. DUSS now offers comprehensive training including private lessons, chamber music,
and theory classes for violin, viola, cello, and bass students starting as early as age five and all the way through the advanced high school level. I’m incredibly honored
to be just the second director in the string school’s
50-year history. I like Duke String School
because it’s a special place. When I play it makes me happy and my whole family happy. I drive almost every Saturday from Virginia to
come to the Duke String School. It’s a great program, it’s a very friendly environment. and they have great teachers, they really
help with your technique. In our world it seems to me that education right now is to measure
how much people know or don’t know. But my personal belief is, and
that’s what I like about the Duke String School, is that it’s not important
to find it out what people know, but to inspire them. To inspire young people to become better human beings. There isn’t a strings program or an orchestra at my school,
so I’m really grateful that there’s a Duke String School
so I have the opportunity to play in an orchestra and have that
experience. I like the Duke String School
because it has different levels of playing. So if you’re a beginner,
they won’t throw you into any class and you might not know the
materials that they might be playing. I’ve never been so involved
and so passionate about playing with a larger group of people,
even in school. So I’m kind of sad to be leaving it behind,
but I’m glad I had that experience. The Youth Symphony is a full orchestra it has not only the strings,
but wind brass and percussion. We do the standard
orchestral repertoire, really the master works. We strive to create an
atmosphere of excellence in the school. We are fortunate too that we get
to perform in the beautiful Baldwin Auditorium
which has been recently renovated and is really a world-class venue. And so the students, I think they
really feel like professional musicians. It’s just a pleasure
conducting them. [Kabalevsky Violin Concerto op. 48 playing] In celebration of our 50th anniversary, please consider donating to the Dorothy Kitchen Scholarship Fund for students who wouldn’t be able to participate otherwise.

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