In 2014, SPIRE continues to further its identity and branding with our own theme music, an anthem that captures the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit that is uniquely SPIRE. The search for a composer led us back to the Farm to find a musician with the skills to create such an important piece. We found that person in Kai Kight, a 2014 graduate of Stanford’s engineering program and a musician.
Kai, a Washington D.C. native, trained as a classical violinist for 20 years. He wanted to be the best, but the field was so saturated that he found it to be nearly impossible to break through the crowd of violinists. Dejected, he stopped playing the instrument he loved and nearly quit forever.
At this time, Kai began focusing on design and engineering studies at Stanford University. He started building products in the machine shop and felt a burst of creativity. As an engineer, Kai felt empowered by tinkering and building things with his hands. Every tool around him could be recombined in different ways to create something new. The possibilities were endless. While he reached success in design, Kai wondered, what if he applied this newfound creative mindset to the violin?
In order to innovate on the violin, he had to reimagine the possibilities of his resource, the instrument itself. Kai became inspired to compose original music that is heavy with non-traditional technique and flare. He has now performed for thousands, including at TEDx in 2013 and Stanford+Connects. Kai believes that the world around us is filled with possibility, we just have to train our minds to see it. He said, “The SPIRE theme song was primarily inspired by the concept of innovation. By combining classical melodies with contemporary rhythmic textures on the violin, I hoped to embody the juxtaposition of invention and tradition that lives within the organization. It was truly an honor to create this piece.”
Kai currently combines his violin virtuosity and experience as a designer to inspire others to reframe their own available resources and create new opportunities.
We are appreciative of our composition patrons, Bill Tooley (’56) and Mark Burger (’80) who joined SPIRE in providing this unique opportunity. We hope you enjoy the SPIRE theme music that will be incorporated into the Hall of Fame tribute videos, on our websites and at our events.