"The most amazing, life-altering, eye-opening, practice-evolving, friendliest
and generous of gifts"
- Margaret Stewart, Photographer

Every symphony you hear, every play you see, every dance you experience every painting and sculpture you see, and every book you read, begins its life with a person in a room with an idea and a passion. The Hermitage provides the room for accomplished creators in a spectacular, inspiring environment. Our artists bring their brilliant ideas. Together, with nature, we feed the passion, and we share it all with our community. This is the work of the Hermitage.


June 30, 2014 marks the end of yet another banner fiscal year for the Hermitage. With our budget finishing in the black, almost 70 invitations to new artists out for next year, a vibrant, engaged Board of Trustees, the imminent conclusion of lease negotiations with Sarasota County for the "Palm House" - a new addition to our campus that effectively doubles our footprint on Manasota Key, and high profile performances and exhibitions of Hermitage-generated work, all is good on Manasota Key.

Highlights of the year were marked by our project with Symphony Space, The Day Before: November 21, 1963 which brought 62 Hermitage Artists together to create new solo and collaborative work reflecting on our world the day before the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The November 11, 2013 project, coordinated and directed by Hermitage Trustee Laura Kaminsky, generated a positive review from the New York Times. More importantly, it generated relationships and collaborations among Hermitage artists that have endured beyond the project. The New York Times review can be downloaded here: REVIEW

October/November 2013 also saw New York's Metropolitan Opera production of Two Boys by composer Nico Muhly and librettist Craig Lucas. Both Muhly and Lucas spent residencies at the Hermitage working on the piece and in November, the Hermitage sponsored its first fundraising trip to New York to see both the Symphony Space project and a performance of Two Boys at the Met. November also saw the most successful Artful Lobster fundraiser in our history, thank you Anne Weintraub and Kelly Gettel, co-chairs.

Among the many incredible artists working at the Hermitage this year, we were proud to host American Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey and MIT's composer Evan Ziporyn, Head of Music and Theater Arts Arts, in January. Their beach reading drew an audience of approximately 350 people.

The spring was equally exciting with the amazing production of Ode To Joy by Craig Lucas, the first Greenfield Prize commissioned play (2009) to see a full production in New York City. And the Boston Symphony, conducted by Hermitage fellow Robert Spano, performed the premiere of Bernard Rands' Concerto for Piano and Orchestra. On the philanthropy side, we exceeded our fundraising goals in most categories including a spectacular success with the Giving Challenge from the Community Foundation of Sarasota County.

Finally, we were so proud to award the 2014 Greenfield Prize in Drama to playwright Nilo Cruz who spoke so elegantly at the beautiful dinner chaired by Hermitage Trustee and Vice President Debbi Benedict. This event was preceded by the world premiere of composer Vijay Iyer's Bruits with the Imani Winds and pianist Corey Smythe presented by the La Musica International Chamber Music Festival.

With all this behind us and beneath us, we are poised for yet another year of compelling artists, community programs, our move into the new property, a new Chicago trip, and new formats for both the Artful Lobster and the Greenfield Prize Dinner. We are excited.


One of the community's best events of the Season is planned for Saturday, November 15, 2014! Tour the Hermitage, feast on Lobster, enjoy great music, and have fun with us as we raise money for the Hermitage and its programs. Click on Artful Lobster to learn more.


We are proud to share our talented people with those in the region through our community programs. Check our calendar and blog for up-to-date information on Hermitage news and events. Interested in volunteering? Our Friends of the Hermitage organization offers many excellent opportunities.