Leila Getz, C.M., O.B.C., D.F.A. – CANADA
As founder and artistic director of the Vancouver Recital Society (VRS), Leila Getz has presented the Canadian debut performances of some of the world’s most brilliant and respected young musicians. Under her leadership, the VRS has become one of the premier recital series in North America, presenting over 500 artists in some of the city’s most prestigious venues. Her commitment to emerging talent and innovative programming has expanded the platform of the classical recital series, introducing audiences to future stars while becoming “a vital part of Vancouver’s cultural life” (Globe and Mail).
Ms. Getz has often been heard to say, “Success in the arts shouldn’t be measured in dollars and cents. Success is what music does to the human spirit. If audiences come out of a concert feeling better than when they went in, that’s success.” The measure of that success clearly means quality of performance, and in the creation of an atmosphere that is cherished as much by the performers as by the audience members.
For her commitment to this goal, she has won an award for Outstanding Achievement in the Performing Arts from Campus and Community Impresarios of Canada, a Woman of Distinction Award from both the State of Israel Bonds and the YWCA, and the Harold Shaw Award in New York given for the outstanding presentation of recitals.
In 1995, Ms. Getz was made a Member of the Order of Canada for her community service in cultivating Canada’s musical landscape. In 2004, she was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal and was appointed to the Order of British Columbia, the province’s highest award for outstanding achievement. In 2005, she was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from Simon Fraser University.
She has served on the juries of the national finals of the Canadian Music Competitions, the Canada Council, and the Ontario Arts Council, and on the Nominating Committee for the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards. She is also a member of the International Council for the Esther Honens International Piano Competition. In 2017, she was a screening jurist for the Concours Musical International de Montréal (CMIM) and was invited to serve on the International Advisory Council of the Fifteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition.
Ms. Getz was one of only three international consultants invited to sit on the Artistic Advisory Committee of the Melbourne Recital Centre in Melbourne, Australia, which opened in February 2009. She was selected by Musical America’s editors as a 2015 Influencer and was profiled in its “The Influencers – The 30 Professionals of the Year” special report. The report states, “In continuing to juxtapose gifted unknowns with the stars, Getz’s Vancouver Recital Series remains an important platform for emerging and established artists on the continent.” In September 2017, she was presented with the Western Arts Alliance Leadership Award.