Heather Landes appointed director of ASU School of Music

Heather Landes

The ASU Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts has appointed Heather Landes as the director of its world-renowned School of Music. Landes has served as the interim director of the school for the past two years and officially began her tenure in the new role July 1.

“Dr. Landes has done an extraordinary job over the past two years as interim director, and has exhibited the leadership, imagination and vision necessary to sustain and build a 21st-century music school that celebrates both excellence and innovation,” said Steven J. Tepper, dean of the ASU Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.

As interim director of the School of Music, Landes created a culture of open and transparent dialogue, demonstrated a deep commitment to the future success of ASU's music students, led the school into a new phase of growth by exceeding enrollment targets, raised money in support of faculty and students, and successfully recruited top scholars and musicians to join the faculty.

“The ASU School of Music enjoys a rich tradition of excellence in music education, a deep commitment to preparing outstanding musicians and leaders, and a clear understanding of the importance of music in the world,” Landes said. “I have been thrilled to serve my colleagues and students in the school as interim director for the past two years, and it is a great honor to be asked to lead the ASU School of Music as director. As part of the New American University, I believe the ASU School of Music is well positioned to be instrumental in shaping the future of 21st-century music education.”

Landes’ career in higher education and arts leadership began at Northwestern University and has spanned more than 25 years, with the last 10 at the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts. She has served as associate dean for student success and curriculum for the past five years, during which time she orchestrated the development of more than 20 new curricular offerings. Her experience and expertise have been instrumental in shaping the vision of the institute.

A former student of Walfrid Kujala, former principal piccolo of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and Alexander Murray, former principal flute of the London Symphony Orchestra, Landes holds a bachelor of music in flute performance from the University of Illinois and a master of music in flute performance from Northwestern University. She earned a doctor of philosophy in education from Loyola University Chicago. Her dissertation research involved a comparative study of the student experience at a conservatory of music and a university school of music.

“Throughout my career in higher education, my work has focused on the education, preparation and success of young artists," Landes said. "I came to this work partly because of what my education provided for me. In the fourth grade, I came home so excited about the flute because of a music program presented by the Kansas City Philharmonic. And, when I said that I wanted to major in music in college, my parents supported that as well. Many students don’t have this kind of home support, and they need the support they find from university faculty and staff to help them find their success."

Landes' teaching and research focus on creativity, entrepreneurship and organizational culture in higher education arts programs.

“With Dr. Landes’ leadership," Tepper said, "we look forward to the School of Music continuing to be a key driver of the future of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts."