Violin / Concertmaster
Heather Wittels is a member of the Chicago Lyric Opera Orchestra first violin section and the Associate Concertmaster of the Glimmerglass Festival Opera Orchestra. She is an adjunct professor at Roosevelt University’s Chicago College of Performing Arts where she performs faculty recitals and has twice conducted and soloed with the String Ensemble. In October, 2018 she performed the Brahms Violin Concerto with the Lakeview Orchestra in Chicago’s historic Athanaeum Theatre where reviewers praised her “exquisite taste” and “immaculate technique”. Ms. Wittels gave her Chicago recital debut in 2012 on the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series at the Chicago Cultural Center, where she appeared again in 2014, and her Wisconsin recital debut on The Midday radio show in Madison, WI. In July 2019 she performed Michael Gordon’s theater piece Acquanetta with Bang on a Can Opera at Bard SummerScape. In February 2020 she and pianist Andrew Rosenblum gave a well-received series of duo recitals in the Chicago area.
Her chamber music projects have been presented by the Live from WFMT radio show, the Illinois Holocaust Museum, the Star Theater in Cherry Valley, NY, and the Glimmerglass Festival, which showcased her production of Stravinsky’s A Soldier’s Tale in August 2018. Since 2014 she has collaborated annually with Historic Hyde Hall in Cooperstown, New York to program, produce, and perform a salon concert of instrumental and vocal chamber music paired with readings of letters. With themes ranging from a Schubertiade to this year’s “Brahms and the Schumanns”, the concert has sold out every year.
Heather graduated cum laude from Yale University with a Bachelor of Science in chemistry, with distinction. Subsequently she earned a Masters in Music and Graduate Diploma in violin performance in the studio of Malcolm Lowe at the New England Conservatory, as beneficiary of the 2007 Tourjée Alumni Award for graduate study. She was a three-time Tanglewood Music Center Fellow and performed at other summer festivals including Spoleto USA, Pacific Music Festival, Banff, and Domaine Forget. She was a fellow of the New World Symphony in Miami, FL for one season before joining the Chicago Lyric Opera Orchestra. A native of Brookline, MA, Heather began the violin at age three.