Topic: Bassoonist Rebecca Heller Appointed Head Int'l Contemporary Ensemble
Rebekah Heller, a dynamic bassoon virtuoso and a member of the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) since 2008, has just been named that trailblazing institution’s newest co-Artistic Director. Heller replaces clarinetist Joshua Rubin, a founding member of ICE, who has served as an artistic director for the ensemble since 2014, and joins percussionist Ross Karre, who became an artistic director in 2016 when flutist and ICE founder Claire Chase stepped down from her position. As Chase did, Rubin now returns to the ranks of core membership.
“I have been honored to represent ICE’s creative leadership as the first member of our performing collective to become a member of our staff,” Rubin said in a press statement. “Rebekah is the embodiment of the co-Artistic Director role as Claire Chase and I envisioned it. But more importantly, she is forging the future of ICE. She is one the most experienced and longest-serving members of our organization as both an artist and administrator, and her voice is always present in our creative vision. I’m excited to continue my work with Rebekah and Ross by returning to my roots as a band member and as an advocate for ICE’s work.”
This passing of the torch reflects an innovative leadership model whereby ICE will rotate its artistic directors on a staggered basis every few years, a move meant to promote opportunity and variety.
“It’s thrilling to see our little-engine-that-could come full circle as a true artist collective, one that does not emulate existing organizational structures but instead continually invents progressive, authentic, and adaptive new ones,” Chase said via e-mail. “It’s also a source of great pride for me as the founder, and now as a devoted board member, that ICE continues to embrace rotating leadership as a tenet of our collectivity.”