Hawaii Youth Symphony

HYS+ To Provide Phenomenal Roster of Faculty & Guest Clinicians


Instruction Provided by Phenomenal Roster of Faculty and Guest Clinicians

Hawaii Youth Symphony is proud to announce online learning programs for students to continue studying and practicing music in a safe space via its new online platform, HYS+. Enrollment is now open to all prospective students, including those without prior HYS experience and Mainland students. Both the Symphony+and Jazz+ online learning programs for the fall and spring semesters have a registration deadline of Wednesday, August 12th at 11:59 p.m.

“As we ready for our 56th season during unprecedented times, we are grateful to our community for their dedication towards helping us reimagine a virtual season with HYS+,” said Randy Wong, HYS President. “Music is a healing art, and its relevance to our youth and their education has never been more apparent. Although we have been taking a temporary intermission from our in-person programming, we are finding creative ways to keep the joy of music a right for all and we are looking forward to providing enriching and dynamic online opportunities for aspiring young musicians everywhere.”

Symphony+ students will take part in interdisciplinary music projects, study orchestral repertoire with members of the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra, hone musical skills, connect with community leaders, and attend performances by phenomenal artists. This innovative program is under the direction of maestro Joseph Stepec (HYS Director of Orchestral Activities), together with fellow HYS faculty Susan Ochi-Onichi (Conductor YSII), Elton Masaki (Conductor YSII), Hannah Watanabe (Conductor, Concert Orchestra) and Wayne Fanning (Conductor, Concert Orchestra).

“Music is much more than just a memorable tune: it is an organized language that speaks to our senses, our hearts,” said Joseph Stepec. “While in rehearsals we often spend a lot of time focusing on our ensemble playing. Symphony+ will provide a unique opportunity to discover and delve deeper into how music ‘works.’”

In addition to the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra’s stellar roster of musicians, special guests and performers planned for the season include Joseph Conyers (Asst. Principal Bass, Philadelphia Orchestra), Devin Ulibarri (Music+Code instructor, MAP Family Learning Center), Donald Reid Womack (composer, University of Hawai‘i  professor of Composition & Music Theory), Nathaniel Silberschlag (Principal Horn, The Cleveland Orchestra), Zachary Silberschlag (Principal Trumpet, Hawaii Symphony Orchestra), Augusta McKay-Lodge (prize-winning baroque and modern violinist), and Alex Hayashi (Oboe, former faculty, Western Michigan University; HYS alumnus).

When: Sundays, 9:30 a.m. – 10:30/11:00 a.m. HST (12:30p.m. PT/3:30p.m. ET start time through November 1; then 11:30 p.m. PT/2:30 p.m. ET through March 14, adjusted for DST. No DST observance in Hawaii).

FALL Semester: August 16 – December 13, 2020

SPRING Semester: January 10 – May 16, 2021

Who: Middle and High School Aged Students with three or more years of ensemble experience or private lessons, and the ability to read music. (Students must be 10 years old by December 31, 2019 and entering the 6th grade.)

Cost: $150 per semester

Instruments accepted: Flute, Clarinet, Oboe, Bassoon, Horn, Trumpet, Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba, Percussion, Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass, Harp

“Improvisation, collaboration, and adaptability are key components of Jazz and all improvised music. Through JAZZ+ students will increase their understanding and appreciation of this collaborative art form, said Dean Taba, Director of HYS Jazz and Combo I. No previous experience is required, but simply a willingness to participate and be open to try new things! This course is designed to be interactive and collaborative, utilizing a variety of web-based tools. We are very excited that offering this program online will allow students from all of Hawai’i, the US, and Internationally to fully participate.”

Led by Dean Taba (Director HYS Jazz and Combo I) and Ryan Howe (Conductor, Combo II), Jazz + will enable students to explore many forms of contemporary improvised music, practice methods, approaches, and perspectives, as well as the practical applications of music theory and ear training.

Guest clinicians include a broad range of celebrated artists, educators, and businesspeople. Among the program’s special guests will be Curtis Abe (jazz trombone), Abe Lagrimus, Jr. (drum set and vibraphone), Tommy James (jazz piano), Noel Okimoto (drum set and vibraphone), and Steve Treseler (saxophone). Students can perform for each other online, as well as collaborate on remote recording projects. No prior experience improvising is required, but simply a willingness to participate and try new things.

When: Sundays, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. HST (or 6:00 p.m. PT/9:00 p.m. ET start time through November 1; then 5:00 p.m. PT/8:00 p.m. ET through March 14, adjusted for DST. No DST observance in Hawaii).

FALL Semester: August 16 – December 13, 2020

SPRING Semester: January 10 – May 16, 2021

Who: Students ages 13 to 18 years old by December 31, 2019, with at least 1 year of private instruction or equivalent experience. No experience improvising is needed.

Cost: $150 per semester

To ensure that no interested child is turned away from a quality music education because of financial need, Hawaii Youth Symphony offers over $35,000 a year through its financial aid program. HYS also offers assistance for registration fees, instrument rentals, private lessons and air and surface travel for neighbor island students.

The Hawaii Youth Symphony is among the largest youth symphony programs in the country, serving 700 students annually from more than 100 schools across the state.

Instruments accepted: Drum Set, Keyboard, Bass, Electric Guitar, Saxophone, Trumpet Trombone. (Exceptions for other instruments may be made on an individual basis.)