Vita West Muir
Vita West Muir, Executive/Artistic Director of Litchfield Performing Arts since 1989, founded LPA in 1981. Her efforts have guided its evolution into a force in the arts in Connecticut and nationally. Ms. Muir has developed and run many programs since LPA began, from classical concerts to the critically acclaimed Litchfield Jazz Festival.
She has secured scores of grants to support LPA’s work, at the local, state and federal levels. Her Project Poetry Live! was selected by the U. S. Department of Education for a major three-year grant. She has served on the boards of The Connecticut Junior Republic, Young Audiences, and the Connecticut Commission on the Arts and as an NEA panelist. Muir received her B.S. in Biology from Fordham University and had a long career as a writer, specializing in medical science. She was Managing Editor of The Bioastronautics Data and Biomedical Results of Apollo for NASA and has written for Reader’s Digest, Family Health Magazine, and others. Her awards include Rotary’s Paul Harris Medal, The Elizabeth L. Mahaffey Arts Administration Fellowship, the Inge Morath Award and, most recently, the 2008 Connecticut Governor’s Award for Excellence in Culture and Tourism.
PR & Marketing Director
Lindsey Turner was raised in Litchfield, CT totally immersed in the arts as her mother, Vita West Muir, founded Litchfield Performing Arts the year she was born. Her early exposure to the arts led her to explore music, theater and photography, finally settling on music receiving a B.A in classical voice from the University of Connecticut in 2003 where she was the recipient of the Victor Borge Scholarship, a section leader in three choirs and a founding member of the Student Programming Advisory Committee for the Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts at UCONN.
Assistant Director / Project Manager
Karen Simpson was born in a small New Jersey town and came to Connecticut as an infant. Her interest in piano and visual art was sparked early by supportive parents who encouraged her to pursue both. Karen graduated from Arizona State University in 2005 with a degree in Art History and worked as an Art Administrator & Registrar in the professional art world until the spring of 2010. She joyfully accepted the offer to join the Litchfield Performing Arts team in April of that year and delighted in the opportunity to finally meld the best of art and music in her life.
Karen is our Litchfield Jazz Festival Technical Director and the Program Coordinator for Project Poetry Live! where she manages an arts-in-education program for some 1200 7th graders across Northwest Connecticut. She is a lover of animals and enjoys hiking, horseback riding, jewelry making, piano and drawing. She lives in Simsbury with her husband and Sedona, their cat.