Monica Kelly, a long-time resident of Camden who has been active in the arts, is the new Executive Director of Bay Chamber Concerts. The announcement was made by Carole Brand, president of the board of directors.

“We are thrilled that Monica has assumed this new role in our organization. Having spent several years as a trustee and then as a member of the staff, she knows the organization well.  She has been the guiding inspiration for our new community music school and is well known in the community.  We have a tradition of great leadership.  Monica Kelly continues that tradition,” Brand said.

Originally trained as a visual artist, Kelly is a graduate of Bowdoin College and received additional training at the Cleveland Institute of Art. She is well known as a painter, having exhibited in major shows locally and throughout the region. The founder of the Odeon String Orchestra, an organization that merged with Bay Chamber Concerts six years ago, she has served as Bay Chamber’s Education Director, Director of Development and, most recently, Managing Director.

According to Bay Chamber Concerts Co-Founder and Artistic Director Thomas Wolf, the appointment of Kelly is part of a great story.

“Our organization has expanded and flourished in recent years and in this, our 50th year, we are at the point where we need and can support a talented full-time Executive Director.  There is no one better than Monica for this position. She has the skills, the vision and the leadership ability,” he said.

Kelly will oversee a faculty of 10 at Bay Chamber’s Community Music School and an administrative staff of five. In addition, she will work with Wolf in creating the programming and school curriculum and managing the logistics of almost a hundred performers who come to Midcoast Maine throughout the year.

Founded in 1961 by brothers Andrew Wolf and Thomas Wolf, Bay Chamber is dedicated to sustaining classical music as an art form. In concerts and in the classroom, Bay Chamber passes along this rich musical heritage to people of all ages and abilities, at the same time acknowledging the importance, and encouraging the exploration, of all musical languages.

A 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization, Bay Chamber has for 50 years awarded annual prizes to young Maine musicians. Bay Chamber Community Music School offers private instruction, orchestral opportunities and other music education to local musicians and community members of all ages and abilities. Bay Chamber Concerts presents music year-round through two performance series: the Summer Music Festival during the months of July and August, featuring classical, jazz and film events in the historic Rockport Opera House and Strand Theatre in Rockland; and the Performing Arts Series from October through May, showcasing a variety of classical, jazz and world music, as well as dance events, in venues throughout Midcoast Maine.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to dernest@villagesoup.com.