©2019 By Rei Hotoda, Conductor

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

June 21, 2019

FRESNO PHILHARMONIC ANNOUNCES 2019-2020 SEASON OVERVIEW:

 

—SYMPHONY REDEFINED—

 

MUSIC DIRECTOR REI HOTODA AND THE FRESNO PHILHARMONIC

EXPAND THE CONCERT EXPERIENCE WITH MUSIC FROM

THE WORLDS OF OPERA, THEATER AND FILM PLUS

EXCITING CONTEMPORARY WORKS BY

VIVIAN FUNG, ADOLPHUS HAILSTORK AND GABRIELA LENA FRANK

 

  • World-class guest artists appearing this season include pianists Cecile Licad and Barry Douglas and trumpet player John Hagstrom.

  • Season explores music written for the stage and concert hall by Strauss, Bernstein, Schubert, Shostakovich, Rachmaninoff, Verdi and Wagner.

  • In celebration of Beethoven’s 250th Anniversary Year, Music Director Rei Hotoda will conduct from the piano Beethoven’s Triple Concerto in collaboration with concertmaster Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio and cellist Julie Albers.

  • Danny Elfman’s score to Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas is performed live in concert with the film.

  • Pink Martini performs a special concert with members of the Fresno Philharmonic.

  • Season spotlights California composers Vivian Fung and Gabriela Lena Frank.

  • Fresno Philharmonic showcases its musicians beyond Saroyan Theatre with Proxima: Music for the Next Century and Chamber Music at Bitwise South Stadium.

  • Fresno Philharmonic continues to offer award-winning education programs to over 130 Fresno County schools through Carnegie Hall’s Link Up: The Orchestra Moves.

  • Popular behind the scenes opportunities for audiences to interact with Music Director Rei Hotoda, guest artists and musicians continue with Stay Tuned, Inside the Music and Meet the Artist Luncheons.

 

FRESNO, CA – June 21, 2019. Today, the Fresno Philharmonic and Music Director Rei Hotoda announced the orchestra’s 2019-2020 season Symphony Redefined, which explores the wide range of places where orchestral music is experienced. From Bernstein’s Candide Overture, to Danny Elfman’s music for the screen, to operas by Verdi and Wagner, the season takes inspiration from the world beyond the concert hall.  Maestro Hotoda will lead the Fresno Philharmonic from the piano for the first time in Beethoven’s Triple Concerto, with concertmaster Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio and cellist Julie Albers as part of the world-wide celebration of Beethoven’s 250th anniversary. The Fresno Philharmonic also introduces the audience to music by three of today’s leading American composers: Vivian Fung (Earworms), Adolphus Hailstork (An American Port of Call) and Gabriela Lena Frank (Escaramuza) demonstrating the diverse range of styles and influences in contemporary music. Highlights of the season include Richard Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier Suite, Arutiunian’s Trumpet Concerto, Schubert’s Symphony No. 9 in C Major (The Great), Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 (Eroica), Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 2, Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2 and a program of arias, choruses and interludes from the operas of Verdi, Puccini, Wagner and Bizet featuring the Fresno Master Chorale. Renowned pianists Cecile Licad and Barry Douglas and Chicago Symphony trumpet player John Hagstrom lead the season’s guest artist roster.

 

Rei Hotoda, the Fresno Philharmonic’s Music Director and Conductor, said “This season reflects our passion to redefine the concert-going experience and celebrate the wonderful diversity of Fresno.  We will be showcasing the versatility of the orchestra by highlighting important works from theater, film and opera alongside some of the greatest works ever written for the concert hall. We are thrilled to be a part of the larger global celebration of Beethoven’s 250th anniversary year, and I am really looking forward to leading the orchestra for the first time from the piano. From The Nightmare Before Christmas to a special concert with Pink Martini, audiences should expect the unexpected from the Fresno Philharmonic.”

The 2019-2020 Pops Series commences with Disney Concerts’ presentation of Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, with the Fresno Philharmonic performing Danny Elfman’s beloved sound track live to film. Maestro Hotoda leads the annual Home for the Holidays concert in December, with special guest Canadian singer-songwriter Steve Bell. The Pops Series concludes with Broadway sensation Lisa Vroman in an evening of musical theater favorites.

 

In March, the genre bending “little orchestra” Pink Martini presents a special concert with members of the Fresno Philharmonic. Pink Martini has performed repeat sold out engagements at Carnegie Hall, L.A.’s Disney Concert Hall, Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco and at major venues around the world. This will be their first appearance in the William Saroyan Theatre.

 

Fresno Philharmonic Musicians in the Community: Proxima and Bitwise

Music Director Rei Hotoda and musicians of Fresno Philharmonic go beyond the Saroyan Theatre performing chamber music in Downtown Fresno locations. In February, the Fresno Philharmonic’s second annual Proxima: Music for the Next Century concert features music by California composers Vivian Fung and Gabriela Lena Frank, both of whom have works performed on the Masterworks series.  Music by Fresno composers, including Benjamin Boone and Walter Saul, will also be featured.  In April, by popular demand, the Fresno Philharmonic returns to the John W. Dodson Theatre in the Bitwise South Stadium tech hub for an eclectic and casual evening of chamber music. (Full details on these performances will be announced later.)

 

Stay Tuned, Inside the Music and Meet the Artist Luncheons

Committed to bringing audiences closer to the concert experience, the Fresno Philharmonic offers two compelling opportunities: Inside the Music and Stay Tuned. One hour prior to each Masterworks concert performance, the Fresno Philharmonic presents Inside the Music, an off-beat and entertaining look at classical music and the people who write and perform it, hosted by Fresno State composer, professor and scholar Dr. Benjamin Boone.  Immediately following each Masterworks performance, Music Director Rei Hotoda leads Stay Tuned a casual and fun talk-back session with guest artists and members of the orchestra in the lower lobby of Saroyan Theatre, taking the audience behind the scenes of the concert program. The Fresno Philharmonic will also present three Meet the Artist Luncheons which provide audience members the opportunity to interact with the music director, guest artists and musicians.

 

Fresno Philharmonic in the Schools

Music Director Rei Hotoda passionately embraces her work in music education through engaging and participatory concerts for students. This philosophy goes hand-in-hand with that of the Fresno Philharmonic, which is a leader in providing exceptional arts education programs for area schools.

 

Next season the orchestra, under the leadership of Rei Hotoda, will once again partner with Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute to present Link Up: The Orchestra Moves in May 2020 in the William Saroyan Theatre. This highly interactive concert will be the culmination of an extensive in-class curriculum for recorder and voice in which over 11,500 students from throughout Fresno County will have the opportunity to perform with the Fresno Philharmonic.  In 2019-2020, Link Up is offered district wide in Fresno, Central, Sanger and Clovis unified school districts, as well as in several individual schools in partnership with the Fresno County Office of Education.  The Fresno Philharmonic’s Link Up program has been recognized with the Yale School of Music’s Distinguished Music Educator Award and is the largest partnership between Fresno County Schools and a performing arts organization.

 

Subscriptions to the Fresno Philharmonic’s 2019-2020 season are on sale now. The Fresno Philharmonic offers subscription packages for the full Masterworks and Pops Series and a 3-Concert Create Your Own Series.  Subscriptions can be purchased online at fresnophil.org or by calling the box office at 559-261-0600. Single tickets go on sale August 1, 2019.

 

 

Overview of 2019-2020 Season Programming

September 22, 2019 3:00 pm

William Saroyan Theatre

Cecile Licad, piano

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and conductor

 

Bernstein: Candide Overture

Saint-Saëns: Piano Concerto No. 2

Vivian Fung: Earworms

Strauss: Der Rosenkavalier Suite

 

October 12, 2019 7:30 pm

William Saroyan Theatre

Tim Davies, conductor

Disney Concerts presents

Live in Concert with Film

 

TIM BURTON’S THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS

 

November 10, 2019 3:00 pm

William Saroyan Theatre

John Hagstrom, trumpet

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and conductor

 

Adolphus Hailstork:  An American Port of Call

Arutiunian:  Trumpet Concerto

Schubert:  Symphony No. 9 in C Major (The Great)

 

December 7, 2019 7:30 pm

William Saroyan Theatre

Steve Bell, guest artist

Fresno Master Chorale

Anna Hamre, director

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and conductor

 

HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS

 

January 19, 2020 3:00 PM

William Saroyan Theatre

Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio, violin

Julie Albers, cello

Rei Hotoda, conductor and piano

 

Beethoven:  Fidelio Overture

Beethoven:  Concerto for Violin, Cello and Piano

Beethoven:  Symphony No. 3 in E-Flat Major (Eroica)

 

February 16, 2020 3:00 pm

William Saroyan Theatre

Barry Douglas, piano

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and conductor

 

Gabriela Lena Frank:  Escaramuza

Shostakovich:  Piano Concerto No. 2

Rachmaninoff:  Symphony No. 2

 

March 21, 2020 8:00 pm

William Saroyan Theatre

Pink Martini

with Members of the Fresno Philharmonic

 

A SPECIAL GALA EVENING WITH PINK MARTINI

 

April 26, 2020 3:00 pm

William Saroyan Theatre

Fresno Master Chorale

Anna Hamre, director

Other Soloists and Program TBA

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and conductor

 

May 9, 2020 7:30 pm

William Saroyan Theatre

Lisa Vroman, soprano

Chelsea Tipton, conductor

 

May 19-21, 2020

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and conductor

 

LINK UP – The Orchestra Moves (a program of Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute)

 

For Immediate Release

June 24, 2020

Contact: Stephen Wilson, President & CEO

swilson@fresnophil.org 559-261-0611 x. 616

 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

October 30, 2018 

FRESNO PHILHARMONIC AND MUSIC DIRECTOR REI HOTODA

PRESENT BRITTEN’S WAR REQUIEM

NOVEMBER 11, 2018

 

Performance of Britten’s War Requiem in Recognition of the 100th Anniversary of the

World War I Armistice, Marks Philharmonic’s First Performance of this Monumental Work

 

The Philharmonic Collaborates with Fresno Historical Society,

the Fresno County Library and Local Veterans’ Groups to Mark World War I Centenary

 

Philharmonic Provides Free Tickets to the November 11 Concert for Hundreds of High School Students

Participating in Fresno County’s Academic Decathlon Competition; Students Study War Requiem as Part of Decathlon Curriculum

 

Fresno, CA— On Sunday, November 11, 2018, exactly one hundred years to the date of the signing of the Armistice that ended World War I, the Fresno Philharmonic performs, for the first time in its history, Britten’s searing and dramatic War Requiem. This massive work requires three soloists, two choirs and an extra conductor. Music Director Rei Hotoda and the Fresno Philharmonic are joined by 300 musicians, including soprano Celena Shafer; tenor Vale Rideout; baritone Christòpheren Nomura; the Alta Sierra Intermediate School Chamber Choir; the Fresno Master Chorale, and conductor Anna Hamre. The performance takes place at 3:00 p.m. in William Saroyan Theatre.

 

The War Requiem was commissioned to celebrate the opening of the new cathedral at Coventry, built to replace the one destroyed in

World War I.  Britten wrote his large-scale composition to speak to his deeply held pacifist and humanitarian beliefs. The War Requiem is regarded as a dramatic turning point in Britten’s career and is considered one of his crowing achievements.  The premiere recording of this work sold over 200,000 copies within its first five months, which was simply unheard of for a classical release at that time. Britten intersperses his setting of the traditional Latin Missa pro Defunctis with nine poems of the First World War poet Wilfred Owen. Written in this unique style, the War Requiem carries overwhelming conviction, and concert audiences the world over continue to respond to its timeless relevance.

 

In presenting Britten’s War Requiem, the Fresno Philharmonic will collaborate with other community partners to mark both Veterans Day and the World War I Centenary, including the Fresno Historical Society, the Fresno County Library and local veterans’ groups.  Several hundred high school students participating in Fresno County’s Academic Decathlon competition, which this year focuses on the 1960s and includes a segment on the War Requiem, will attend the November 11 concert for free as part of their preparation.

 

The Fresno Philharmonic’s performance of Britten’s War Requiem is sponsored by Boos & Associates, A Professional Corporation.

 

About the Artists

 

Rei Hotoda, the newly appointed Music Director of the Fresno Philharmonic, is rapidly becoming one of America’s most sought after and dynamic artists. She has appeared as a guest conductor with many of today’s leading ensembles, including the Symphony Orchestras of Baltimore, Chicago, St. Louis, Dallas, Toronto, Utah, Fort Worth, Winnipeg, and Colorado as well as the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, among others. She is a tireless advocate for the music of our time, and is equally at home leading the orchestra from the piano as well as from the podium.

 

Community engagement and inspiring the next generation of musicians coupled with a deep commitment to showcasing artistic diversity and collaborating with a wide array of artists defines Rei’s artistic philosophy. Her 2018-19 masterworks concert season in Fresno will focus on the power of music with a deep connection to storytelling and community engagement. Works by John Corigliano, Missy Mazzoli, Zhao Jiping, Aaron Jay Kernis, Benjamin Boone (local Fresno composer), and a world premiere of a new work by Dinuk Witjeratne co-commissioned by the Fresno Philharmonic outline the season. These master voices of today are paralleled by those of the classical cannon when she also conducts works by Beethoven, Strauss, and Prokofiev. At the centerpiece of Rei’s season with the Fresno Philharmonic is Britten’s provocative War Requiem, presented in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the end to World War I. To amplify the dynamic work on the mainstage, Rei will again host a series of casual-format talkbacks, entitled “Stay Tuned,” and lead newly-designed “Meet the Artists” luncheons at repertoire-relevant locations throughout the city.

 

With repertoire spanning Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 to Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 8 and from Toyama’s Rhapsody for Orchestra to Jennifer Higdon’s Percussion Concerto, Rei will make several exciting debuts this season when she appears as guest conductor with the Symphony Orchestras of Spokane, Portland, Detroit, Hilton Head, and Hawaii and a welcome return to Dallas.

 

The Fresno Philharmonic, now in its 65th season, is one of the leading arts organizations in California’s Central San Joaquin Valley. As Fresno’s professional symphony orchestra, the Fresno Philharmonic presents incomparable live musical experiences to thousands of people each season and provides high quality music education programs to students throughout our region.  The mission of the Fresno Philharmonic is to enrich and transform the lives of the residents of the Central Valley through performances of great music.  The Fresno Philharmonic believes that music of the highest caliber should be available and accessible to all.

 

After two summers as an apprentice at the Santa Fe Opera, the career of soprano Celena Shafer was launched to critical raves as Ismene in Mozart’s Mitridate, Re di Ponto.  Anne Midgette in the New York Times wrote, “It takes the debutante Celena Shafer, an alumna of the apprentice program here, to show how it should be done, singing the Oriental princess Ismene with flair, vocal balance and great cadenzas.”

 

Since that breakthrough debut, Ms. Shafer has garnered acclaim for her silvery voice, fearlessly committed acting and phenomenal technique.  She spends much of her time on the concert stage and has appeared with the orchestras in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Los Angeles with leading conductors such as Christoph von Dohnanyi, Alan Gilbert, Bernard Labadie, Robert Spano, Nicholas McGegan, Kent Nagano, Donald Runnicles, Michael Tilson Thomas, David Robertson and Sir Andrew Davis.

 

A celebrated artist in her home state of Utah, Ms. Shafer has a long relationship with the Utah Symphony | Utah Opera where during the 2014/2015 season she was Artist-in-Residence with the Symphony and returns in the 2015/16 season for Beethoven Symphony No. 9 and a New Year's concert, both with music director Thierry Fischer.  She also recorded Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 with the Utah Symphony | Utah Opera under Mr. Fischer in 2016/17.

American tenor Vale Rideout has garnered critical acclaim for his musical artistry and superb stagecraft throughout the United States and Europe. Possessed of both a beautiful instrument and an ability to consistently deliver passionate, energetic performances, he is equally in demand for leading tenor roles from the standard repertory to contemporary works.  

Mr. Rideout's engagements in the 2017-18 season included performing Hades in the premiere of Julian Wachner's REV 23 with the Boston New Music Festival; joining the Florentine Opera Company for their production of The Merry Widow as Camille; performing as soloist in Bach's St. Matthew's Passion with The Arcadia Chorale and Wilkes University Chorus, and joining the New York Festival of Song for their Bernstein "Marathon." This season, Mr. Rideout returns to Florentine Opera as Villers in Carlisle Floyd's Prince of Players, is soloist in Britten's War Requiem with the Fresno Philharmonic Orchestra, and is soloist in Carmina Burana with the North Carolina Symphony. 

As soloist, Mr. Rideout’s recent concert engagements included Britten’s War Requiem with the Washington Chorus, Mendelssohn’s St. Paul with New York Choral Society at Carnegie Hall, and Berlioz’ La damnation de Faust with Richmond Symphony Orchestra. He has sung Messiah with Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Haydn’s Paukenmesse with Berkshire Choral Festival; and with conductor Lorin Maazel he has sung Britten’s War Requiem with the New York Philharmonic and Los Angeles Philharmonic, as well as Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with Symphonica Toscanini in Rome and Brussels.  

Baritone Christòpheren Nomura stands at the forefront of his generation of singers. Since making his New York City debut, he has performed throughout the world, hailed as one of classical music's "rising stars" by the Wall Street Journal.

 

Mr. Nomura has earned a prominent place on the operatic, concert and recital stages, appearing with many of the leading North American orchestras, in wide-ranging repertoire:  the Boston Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, Utah Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and the Boston Pops under internationally renowned conductors such as Leonard Bernstein, Seiji Ozawa, James Conlon, Sergiu Comissiona, Christof Perick, Roger Norrington, Christopher Hogwood, Ton Koopman, Bruno Weil, Paul Goodman, Jane Glover, Andrew Parrott, and Nicholas McGegan.

 

He has become a regular guest artist with a number of orchestras including the Pacific Symphony Orchestra under Carl St. Clair, the North Carolina Symphony with Grant Llewellyn and the National Philharmonic. In 2006 he sang the title role in the premiere of Philip Glass’ The Passion of Rama Krishna for the Pacific Symphony’s inaugural concerts in Segerstrom Concert Hall, reprised and recorded there in 2011. He also gave the premiere of Alva Henderson’s From Greater Light with the Pacific Symphony in 2009. That season brought the first of several appearances with the Oregon Bach Festival in Haydn’s Creation under Helmuth Rilling.  His debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra in Handel’s Messiah brought a return engagement in the 2012-13 season. 2015-16 brought his first Musical Theater performances in the role of Tatsuo Kimura Allegiance, which ran on Broadway with George Takei, Lea Solanga and Telly Leung, Other recent performances include Bach’s B Minor Mass with Dawn Upshaw at the Cartagena International Festival, his debut with Boston’s Discovery Ensemble in Martin’s Jedermann  Monologues and the premiere of Songs of War & Loss by Anthony Plog, a commission for Nomura and the American Brass Quintet which was reprised for his Aspen Festival debut.  Highlights of 2018 include a reprise of Philip Glass’ The Passion of Rama Krishna with the Pacific Symphony, Handel’s Esther  with Musiuc of the Baroque and Bach’s B Minor Mass  with the Mexico City Philharmonic.

 

Fresno Community Chorus Master Chorale is a group of musicians as diverse as the community it represents, joined together to more completely understand and perform great choral literature from masterworks of previous centuries to contemporary works. Our goal is to provide the best possible musical experience for our members and to present performances of the highest quality to our audiences. We seek to be instrumental in the building of community in California’s Central Valley with other arts and service organizations when the presentation of compatible themes can enrich, enlarge, and engage our shared audiences.

 

Tuning In: Fresno Philharmonic in Partnership with Valley Public Radio

Valley Public Radio has been a long-standing and celebrated partner of the Fresno Philharmonic, bringing the orchestra to over 70,000 households throughout Fresno, Tulare, Kern, Madera, Merced, Mariposa and Kings Counties. Each season it broadcasts all of the Philharmonic’s Masterworks programs on the Tuesday following original concert. This season David Aus will serve as host of the concert broadcasts and interviews with Music Director Rei Hotoda and guest artists.

 

Sunday, November 11, 2018 at 3:00 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor

Celena Shafer, soprano

Vale Rideout, tenor

Christòpheren Nomura, baritone

Fresno Master Chorale

Anna Hamre, director

Alta Sierra Intermediate School Chamber Choir

Gail Barbour, director

 

Stories of Valor

Britten — War Requiem

 

Tickets

Ticket prices range from $25-$79, with discounts for subscription packages. The Fresno Philharmonic offers special $15 tickets for students (with valid student ID or class schedule) to any of regular season concerts.

 

Tickets can be purchased online at fresnophil.org or by calling the box office at 559-261-0600. Tickets can also be purchased in person by visiting the box office (Monday-Friday from 10am-4pm) located at 7170 N. Financial Drive, Suite 135, Fresno, CA 93720.

 

The Fresno Philharmonic’s 2018-2019 season is made possible by major support from the Bonner Family Foundation, Daniel R. Martin Family Foundation, Dr. J.D. Northway, and the Leon S. Peters Foundation. Concerts and related programs are generously sponsored by Boos & Associates, A Professional Corporation, The California Eye Institute, Margaret Desmond Hughes, Fresno City College, Fresno State, The Family of Robert M. Libby, McCormick Barstow, LLP, Penny Newman Grain Company, Saint Agnes Medical Center, United Security Bank, the William T. Coyle and Wanda G. Coyle Charitable Trust, and Zenith Insurance Company. Media partners: The Fresno Bee, Valley PBS, and Valley Public Radio.

 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

October 3, 2018

 

FRESNO PHILHARMONIC ANNOUNCES COMPLETE PROGRAMMING

AND SPECIAL PROJECTS FOR 2018-19 SEASON

 

—THE POWER OF MUSIC—

 

UNDER THE DIRECTION OF MUSIC DIRECTOR REI HOTODA

 

  • Six Masterworks concerts explore the dynamic power of music to bring stories to life and showcase the breadth and depth of the orchestra

 

  • A performance of Britten’s War Requiem in recognition of the 100th anniversary of the World War I Armistice, marks the Philharmonic’s first performance of this monumental work

 

  • Special events surrounding War Requiem performance include collaborations with Fresno Historical Society, the Fresno County Library and local veterans’ groups as well as free access to the November 11 concert for hundreds of high school students participating in Fresno County’s Academic Decathlon competition, which will utilize the monumental work as a focus of one of their sessions

 

  • World premiere of a newly co-commissioned work by Dinuk Wijeratne takes inspiration from Fresno community

 

  • Intimate casual concert, curated by Music Director Rei Hotoda, at Fresno tech hub Bitwise South Stadium spotlights members of the Fresno Philharmonic

 

  • New this season: free new music concert Proxima will feature musicians of the Fresno Philharmonic performing at the Henry Madden Library at Fresno State University

 

  • Philharmonic continues to highlight Fresno’s artistic riches with a nature-inspired concert that features local composer Benjamin Boone’s Waterless Music

 

  • Stay Tuned, the uniquely-formatted post-concert talkback with Music Director Rei Hotoda, celebrates its second season and features special guests

 

  • Fresno Philharmonic partners with Arte Américas, the Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno, and the San Joaquin River Parkway for newly reformatted Meet the Artist Luncheon series

 

  • Fresno Philharmonic expands education offerings to now reach over 11,500 students through Carnegie Hall Link Up: The Orchestra Moves in more than 130 schools

 

  • The artistic versatility of the Fresno Philharmonic on display in three pops programs; Music Director Rei Hotoda leads genre-blending concert with Time for Three

 

  • Season soloists:  pianists Jon Nakamatsu, Joyce Yang, and Zhang Zou; violinist Sirena Huang; and master pipa player Wu Man

 

  • Philharmonic continues to celebrate the music of our time, by performing works by John Corigliano, Missy Mazzoli, Zhao Jiping, Benjamin Boone and Dinuk Wijeratne

October 3, 2018; Fresno, CA—The Fresno Philharmonic and Music Director Rei Hotoda have announced the complete programing and special projects for the 2018-19 season, the orchestra’s 65th. The season’s theme The Power of Music will explore music’s unique ability to bring stories to life with six Masterworks programs that cast a spotlight on contemporary and beloved repertoire with performances by some of today’s leading soloists.

 

Highlights include: The world premiere of a new work by Dinuk Wijeratne and a Fresno Philharmonic debut performance of Britten’s War Requiem, both reiterating the orchestra’s standing as a leader amongst its peers. Musicians of the orchestra are highlighted through several Masterworks programs as well as a free new music concert entitled Proxima at the Henry Madden Library at Fresno State that will include a new work by the winner of a student composition competition; and a special concert, curated by Music Director Rei Hotoda, at Bitwise South Stadium, a dynamic tech hub at the forefront of efforts to revitalize Downtown Fresno. The orchestra continues to deepen it’s reach into the community through new partnerships and series with reformatted and different programs, such as Meet the Artist Luncheons and Stay Tuned. A focus on the Fresno arts scene with a performance of Fresno State composer Benjamin Boone’s Waterless Music.  Expanding access to great music and connecting with hundreds of local schools, the Fresno Philharmonic will present six free performances of Link Up: The Orchestra Moves, developed by Carnegie Hall, reaching more than 11,500 Fresno County elementary students. The Fresno Philharmonic continues to attract world class artists this season with performances by pianists Jon Nakamatsu (Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1), Joyce Yang (Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 24) and Zhang Zou (Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2); violinist Sirena Huang (Barber’s Violin Concerto); and master pipa player Wu Man (Zhao Jiping’s Pipa Concerto No. 2).  In addition to works by Wijeratne, Zhao Jiping and Boone, the music of our time continues to take center stage this season with programs that include John Corigliano’s Promenade Overture (in celebration of the composer’s 80th birthday) and Missy Mazzoli’s River Rouge Transfiguration.

 

“Music’s unique and unparalleled power to tell a story will be the focus of our dynamic season,” said Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor, Fresno Philharmonic. “Through presenting programs that blend beloved masterpieces with those from the new voices of today, we can showcase the extraordinary musicians of the Fresno Philharmonic and bring to light tales from near and far in exciting ways. Large-scale projects such as the Fresno Philharmonic’s first performances of Britten’s War Requiem and the world premiere of a new work by Dinuk Wijeratne, will further our commitment to building toward the Fresno Philharmonic’s future.”   

 

Quote Stephen Wilson: “Under Rei Hotoda’s inspired leadership, the Fresno Philharmonic is evolving the definition of what a 21st century American orchestra can be through programming which reflects and engages with our whole community,” commented Stephen Wilson, President and CEO, Fresno Philharmonic. “Both our orchestra concerts and special projects are designed to bring people together around music from the past to the present day which mirrors the creative synergies within Fresno to create meaningful experiences for our audiences.”

 

Making History: World Premiere by Dinuk Wijeratne

 

The Fresno Philharmonic is committed to championing the music of our time and supporting the next generation of composers. On April 7, as part of the Masterworks series, the Fresno Philharmonic, under the direction of its Music Director Rei Hotoda, presents the world premiere of a new work by Dinuk Wijeratne, a Sri Lankan-born Canadian composer, who grew up in Dubai. The piece is a co-commission by the Fresno Philharmonic and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

 

Wijeratne, known for bringing disparate cultures together through his music, will draw inspiration for his new work from the surrounding Fresno area.  He recently spent time in Fresno meeting with composition students and members of the local farming and arts communities. His new work will be a nine-minute piece written for full orchestra, and will celebrate the sights, sounds and cultures of Fresno.

 

In addition, Wijeratne will return to Fresno in April to give a lecture to Fresno State composition students and participate in other outreach activities in connection with the performance of his new work.

 

The co-commission and world premiere of a new work by Dinuk Wijeratne is made possible by a grant from the Clarence E. Heller Foundation.

 

Powerful Project: Britten’s War Requiem

 

To commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, and to pay homage to the Fresno veterans who have or are currently serving the country, the Fresno Philharmonic will perform Britten’s monumental War Requiem. The concert takes place on November 11, the actual date of the signing of the Armistice that brought this tragic war to an end. Rei Hotoda will lead the orchestra in collaboration with soprano Celena Shafer; tenor Vale Rideout; baritone Christópheren Nomura; the Alta Sierra Intermediate School Chamber Choir (Gail Barbour, director); and the Fresno Master Chorale (Anna Hamre, director). This performance of the War Requiem will mark the first time the Fresno Philharmonic has performed this work.

 

In presenting Britten’s War Requiem, the Fresno Philharmonic will be collaborating with other community partners to mark both Veterans Day and the World War I centenary, including the Fresno Historical Society, the Fresno County Library and local veterans’ groups.  Several hundred high school students participating in Fresno County’s Academic Decathlon competition, which this year focuses on the 1960s and includes a segment on the War Requiem, will attend the November 11 concert as part of their preparation.

 

The Power of Music: Masterworks Concerts that Tell a Story

 

Over the course of six concerts that compose the Daniel R. Martin Masterworks Series, the Fresno Philharmonic, under the direction of Music Director Rei Hotoda, will explore and exemplify music’s unique power to amplify and tell a story. Through blending masterworks of the past and those of the present day with stories from near and far, listeners will be immersed in vivid soundscapes, taken to exotic and intoxicating lands, be awash in heroic bravado, and be challenged to think, dream and feel.

 

The Fresno Philharmonic’s season opens on Sunday, October 21, when Music Director Rei Hotoda leads the orchestra in a concert that will dazzle the eyes and ears. The program begins with Corigliano’s Promenade Overture—in celebration of the composer’s 80th birthday—and ends with Mussorgsky/Ravel Pictures at an Exhibition. Pianist and Fresno-favorite, Jon Nakamatsu is the featured soloist for Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1, which rounds out the program.

 

On November 11, exactly one hundred years to the date of the signing of the Armistice that ended World War I, the Fresno Philharmonic will perform, for the first time in its history, Britten’s searing and dramatic War Requiem. Britten intersperses his setting of the traditional Latin Missa pro Defunctis with nine poems of the World War I poet Wilfred Owen, resulting in highly subtle and powerful contrasts and ironies. This epic work carries overwhelming conviction, and audiences the world over continue to respond to its timeless relevance. This massive work requires three soloists, two choirs and an extra conductor. Music Director Rei Hotoda and the Fresno Philharmonic will be joined on stage by soprano Celena Shafer; tenor Vale Rideout; baritone Christópheren Nomura; the Alta Sierra Intermediate School Chamber Choir; the Fresno Master Chorale, and conductor Anna Hamre.

 

Next, on Sunday, January 20, audiences are treated to tales from the east and west.  The afternoon begins on this side of the Atlantic with Missy Mazzoli’s River Rouge Transfiguration. Written for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in 2013, Mazzoli’s work was inspired by the literary metaphor comparing Detroit’s factories to cathedral’s and altars. The East takes centerstage as master pipa player Wu Man performs Zhao Jiping’s Pipa Concerto No. 2. The Fresno Philharmonic’s concertmaster Stephanie Sant ‘Ambrogio will be in the spotlight for Rimsky-Korsakov’s beautiful Scheherazade.

 

Tales of heroism and romance take flight on Sunday, February 24, when the Fresno Philharmonic performs R. Strauss’ epic tone poem, Don Juan. Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 24 will be the centerpiece of the concert, featuring Joyce Yang as soloist. The program ends with Brahms’ romantic Symphony No. 2.

 

Nature and poetry are the theme for the Fresno Philharmonic’s concert on Saturday, March 16.  The poetry of Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Philip Levine serves as the basis for Fresno composer Benjamin Boone’s Waterless Music, a meditation on the Central Valley’s most critical natural resource.  The inaugural winner of the Elmar Oliveira International Violin Competition, Sirena Huang, is the soloist for Barber’s emotionally-driven Violin Concerto. The concert comes to a close in a bucolic pasture with Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 (Pastorale). 

 

The season-ending concert on April 7 will be one of historic and epic proportions, beginning with the world premiere of a new work by Dinuk Wijeratne that was co-commissioned by the Fresno Philharmonic and draws its inspiration from the sights and sounds of Fresno. Next, powerhouse pianist Zhang Zou brings Rachmaninoff’s powerful Piano Concerto No. 2 to life. The Masterworks season ends with Prokofiev’s “hymn to mankind,” his thrilling and triumphant Symphony No. 5.

 

Making Connections Relevant: Meet the Artist Luncheons and Inside the Music

 

Music Director Rei Hotoda and the Fresno Philharmonic have deepened their commitment to designing cross-platform programs that can be linked back to the season’s theme and widen the orchestra’s reach into the community. New this season—and in collaboration with Arte Américas, the Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno, the San Joaquin River Parkway—the Fresno Philharmonic has reformatted its popular Meet the Artist luncheon series to bring into focus topics that are directly relevant to pieces that are the focus of specific Masterworks concerts. This popular series takes place on various Thursday’s prior to selected mainstage programs.

 

The Meet the Artist series kicks-off on October 18 when Music Director Rei Hotoda and selected Fresno Philharmonic musicians discuss the pieces and composers featured on the opening Masterworks concert, including John Corigliano (Promenade Overture) and Mussorgsky (Pictures at an Exhibition). This event takes place at Arte Américas, a vibrant museum in the burgeoning Cultural Arts District in downtown Fresno that will provide a relevant backdrop to the discussion.

 

On January 18, in a first-time collaboration with the Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno, Music Director Rei Hotoda is joined by master pipa player and soloist for the January concert, Wu Man. The lively discussion will focus on the tales of the Silk Road and East-West cultural exchange in works by Zhao Jiping (Pipa Concerto No. 2) and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (Scheherazade).

 

Local Fresno composer Benjamin Boone will join Music Director Rei Hotoda for an outdoor luncheon at the San Joaquin River Parkway on March 14 to discuss the upcoming Masterworks program that includes Boone’s composition Waterless Music. This evocative piece speaks to the vital issue of California’s droughts. The San Joaquin River Parkway serves as a fitting venue for this talk.

 

Space is limited and reservations can be made online at fresnophil.org or by calling the Box Office at 559-261-0600.

 

One-hour prior to each Masterworks concerts, ticket holders are invited to come to the main floor of Saroyan Theatre for an inside look at each afternoon’s program as Fresno State composer, professor and musician Benjamin Boone offers a lively and interactive presentation, often with appearances by the conductor, guest artist or composer. Inside the Music lectures are free and open to all ticket buyers for that day’s Masterworks concert.

 

Deepening Engagement: Stay Tuned Continues with Special Guests

 

Last season, Music Director Rei Hotoda began a new post-concert series to bring audiences together with soloists and orchestra musicians in an engaging and different way. Following each Masterworks program the afternoon’s performers speak on an intimate and personal level with audience members. Oftentimes there are interactive discussions and games that bridge the divide between musician and listener. Stay Tuned is free and open to all ticket holders of that day’s concert.

 

Spotlight on Musicians: Concerts Outside of Saroyan Theater

 

The Fresno Philharmonic is made up of some of today’s most talented musicians who are incredible soloists and chamber players in their own right. In recognition of this, listeners will have several opportunities to hear members of the orchestra outside the hall this season.  

 

The Fresno Philharmonic, in collaboration with the Fresno State Department of Music, will present a free concert of new music, on February 20, that features members of the Fresno Philharmonic in the Henry Madden Library at Fresno State University.  The event, called Proxima (Spanish for “next”), will highlight works by a diverse range of contemporary composers, including Vera Ivanova, Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon, Andrea Clearfield and Fresno composers Kenneth Froelich and Jack Fortner.  The performance will also include a piece by the student winner of the 2019 Fresno State Art Song Competition.

 

Following on the success of last year’s intimate and casual concert experience at Bitwise South Stadium, this season, on Saturday, April 6, members of the Fresno Philharmonic will perform an hour-long program that is curated and hosted by Music Director Rei Hotoda.  Audience members are taken through a virtual musical journey, discovering how one piece, composer or instrumentalist is linked to the other. 

 

A Kaleidoscope of Sounds: Pops Concerts that are Appealing to Al

 

The dynamic versatility of the musicians of the Fresno Philharmonic is brought to the forefront through three concerts as part of the orchestra’s popular programming. The Fresno Philharmonic’s three concert pops series began with guest conductor Stuart Chafetz, who led the ensemble in beloved soundtracks from The Lone Ranger to the Avengers on Saturday, September 22.

 

The Pops series continues on Saturday, December 15, when the Fresno Philharmonic will ring in the holidays with guest conductor Scott Dunn and the Fresno Master Chorale as they celebrate the season with time-honored favorites for the whole family.

 

Genre-blending will be the program when Music Director Rei Hotoda joins forces with Time for Three, on Saturday, May 11, for a concert that will be like none other this season. The American trio—violinists Nicholas Kendall and Charles Yang and double bassist Ranaan Meyer—performs everything from classical to bluegrass, folk, jazz and mash-ups of Beatles, Kanye West, Katy Perry and more.

 

Creating Access Through Carnegie Hall Link Up 

 

The Fresno Philharmonic is committed to fostering the next generation of musicians and music-lovers, and to improving the quality of life of those in their region through music education programs which reach more than 11,500 students annually. This season, the Philharmonic, under the leadership of its Music Director Rei Hotoda, will offer six free performances of Link Up: The Orchestra Moves, a program designed by Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute to introduce elementary students to instrumental music by making them a part of the orchestra.

 

Link Up actively engages students as both listeners and participants and provides an intimate link between the orchestra on stage and those in the audience. During the concert, students perform music on recorder and voice which they have been studying all year in their classrooms. Singers Valerie Salcedo and Lim Forgey, and host Tony Sanders, will join Music Director Rei Hotoda and the Fresno Philharmonic to bring this highly interactive program to life.

 

Link Up is a program of Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute. The Fresno Philharmonic’s Link Up program is presented in partnership with the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools to elementary students from over 130 schools in Central Unified School District, Clovis Unified School District, Fresno Unified School District, Sanger Unified School District and other area schools.

 

In addition to its Link Up concerts, the Fresno Philharmonic regularly partners with individual schools and teachers to bring school groups to rehearsals and concerts. These opportunities are usually customized depending on the grade-level, interest, and learning objectives for each group.

 

For more information on the Fresno Philharmonic’s programs for schools, visit fresnophil.org

 

Tuning In: Fresno Philharmonic in Partnership with Valley Public Radio

 

Valley Public Radio has been a long-standing and celebrated partner of the Fresno Philharmonic, bringing the orchestra to over 70,000 households throughout Fresno, Tulare, Kern, Madera, Merced, Mariposa and Kings Counties. Each season it broadcasts all of the Philharmonic’s Masterworks programs on the Tuesday following original concert. This season David Aus will serve as host. Additionally, host Joe Moore features interviews with Music Director Rei Hotoda and guest artists in advance of each concert. 

 

Season Calendar

 

Thursday, October 18, 2018 at 12:00 p.m.

Meet the Artist Luncheon with Rei Hotoda and Musicians of the Fresno Philharmonic

Arte Américas

Rei Hotoda, Music Director

Selected Musicians of the Fresno Philharmonic

 

Join Music Director Rei Hotoda at Arte Américas for lunch and a lively conversation with select Fresno Philharmonic musicians. Enjoy a gourmet boxed lunch from Max’s Bistro and learn about the pieces and composers featured in our opening Masterworks concert, Grand Promenade, including Mussorgsky’s evocative journey through a museum in Pictures at an Exhibition. Space is limited and advance purchase is required.

 

Sunday, October 21, 2018 at 3:00 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor

Jon Nakamatsu, piano

 

Season Opening Concert: Grand Promenade

John Corigliano — Promenade Overture

Tchaikovsky — Piano Concerto No. 1

Mussorgsky/Ravel — Pictures at an Exhibition

 

Sunday, November 11, 2018 at 3:00 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor

Celena Shafer, soprano

Vale Rideout, tenor

Christópheren Nomura, baritone

Fresno Master Chorale

Anna Hamre, director

Alta Sierra Intermediate School Chamber Choir

Gail Barbour, director

 

Stories of Valor

Britten — War Requiem

 

Saturday, December 15, 2018 at 7:30 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Scott Dunn, conductor

Fresno Master Chorale

Anna Hamre, director

 

Home for the Holidays

An evening of time-honored seasonal favorites with the Fresno Master Chorale that the whole family will cherish.

 

Thursday, January 17, 2019 at 12:00 p.m.

Meet the Artist Luncheon with Rei Hotoda and Wu Man

Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno

Rei Hotoda, Music Director

Wu Man, pipa

 

Join Music Director Rei Hotoda at the Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno for lunch and a lively conversation with pipa virtuoso Wu Man. Enjoy a gourmet boxed lunch from Max’s Bistro and learn about the Tales of the Silk Road concert and East-West cultural exchange in works by Zhao Jiping and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. Space is limited and advance purchase is required.

 

Sunday, January 20, 2019 at 3:00 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor

Wu Man, pipa

 

Tales of the Silk Road

Missy Mazzoli — River Rouge Transfiguration

Zhao Jiping — Pipa Concerto No. 2

Rimsky-Korsakov — Scheherazade

 

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.

Members of the Fresno Philharmonic

Henry Madden Library, Fresno State University

Members of the Fresno Philharmonic

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Pianist

Members of the Fresno Philharmonic

 

Proxima

New music concert featuring works by Vera Ivanova, Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon, Andrea Clearfield, Kenneth Froelich and Jack Fortner.

 

Sunday, February 24, 2019 at 3:00 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor

Joyce Yang, piano

 

To Brahms with Love

R. Strauss — Don Juan

Mozart — Piano Concerto No. 24

Brahms — Symphony No. 2

 

Thursday, March 14, 2019 at 12:00 p.m.

Meet the Artist Luncheon with Rei Hotoda and Benjamin Boone

The San Joaquin River Parkway

Rei Hotoda, Music Director

Benjamin Boone, composer

 

Join Music Director Rei Hotoda and Fresno composer Benjamin Boone for an outdoor luncheon at the Coke Hallowell Center for River Studies. Enjoy a gourmet boxed lunch from Max’s Bistro and a lively conversation about the Nature Speaks concert program, which includes Boone’s composition Waterless Music, inspired by the poetry of Philip Levine. Space is limited and advance purchase is required.

 

Saturday, March 16, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor

Sirena Huang, violin

 

Nature Speaks

Benjamin Boone — Waterless Music

Barber — Violin Concerto

Beethoven — Symphony No. 6 (Pastorale)

 

Saturday, April 6, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.

Members of the Fresno Philharmonic

Bitwise South Stadium

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Host

 

An intimate and casual evening of chamber music by musicians of the Fresno Philharmonic, hosted by Rei Hotoda.

 

Sunday, April 7, 2019 at 3:00 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor

Zhang Zou, piano

 

Symphony of Sound

Dinuk Wijeratne — World Premiere 

                                 (Co-commission between the Fresno Philharmonic and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.)

Rachmaninoff — Piano Concerto No. 2

Prokofiev — Symphony No. 5

 

Saturday, May 11, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.

Fresno Philharmonic

William Saroyan Theatre

Rei Hotoda, Music Director and Conductor

Time for Three:

  Nicholas Kendall, violin

  Charles Yang, violin

  Ranaan Meyer, double bass

 

Time for Three defies traditional genre classification with infectious energy, virtuosity and showmanship. This American trio performs everything from classical to bluegrass, folk, jazz and mash-ups of Beatles, Kanye West, Katy Perry and more.

 

Tickets

 

Tickets for all concerts and events are on sale now. The Fresno Philharmonic offers subscription packages for the full Masterworks and Pops Series and a 3-Concert Create Your Own Series.  Subscriptions and single tickets can be purchased online at fresnophil.org by calling the box office at 559-261-0600. Tickets can also be purchased in person by visiting the box office (Monday-Friday from 10am-4pm) located at 7170 N. Financial Drive, Suite 135, Fresno, CA 93720 
 

Masterworks and Pops concert ticket prices range from $25-$79, with discounts for subscription packages. The Fresno Philharmonic offers special $15 tickets for students (with valid student ID or class schedule) to any of regular season concerts.

 

Sponsors

 

The Fresno Philharmonic’s 2018-2019 season is made possible by major support from the Bonner Family Foundation, Daniel R. Martin Family Foundation, Dr. J.D. Northway, and the Leon S. Peters Foundation. Concerts and related programs are generously sponsored by Boos & Associates, A Professional Corporation, The California Eye Institute, Margaret Desmond Hughes, Fresno State, The Family of Robert M. Libby, McCormick Barstow, LLP, Penny Newman Grain Company, Saint Agnes Medical Center, United Security Bank, the William T. Coyle and Wanda G. Coyle Charitable Trust, and Zenith Insurance Company. Media partners: The Fresno Bee, Valley PBS, and Valley Public Radio.

 

The Fresno Philharmonic’s Link Up program is made possible by generous support from Bank of America, Bank of the West, Bonner Family Foundation, California Arts Council, California Bank & Trust, Educational Employees Credit Union, Fresno County Superintendent of Schools, Fresno Lexus, and Valley Children’s Healthcare. Additional support is provided by the Central California Women’s Conference, The Bertha and John Garabedian Foundation, Drs. Robert and Linda Glassman, and Judith and Donald Peracchi.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

October 3, 2018

 

Contact:

Raechel Alexander, President

RA Complete Communications

917-815-8790

ralexander@ra-completecommunications.com

 

Stephen WilsonPresident & CEO, Fresno Philharmonic

559-261-0611, x. 616 

swilson@fresnophil.org

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

June 6, 2017

 

REI HOTODA APPOINTED MUSIC DIRECTOR OF THE FRESNO PHILHARMONIC 

 

Ms. Hotoda Starts Tenure as Music Director of Fresno Philharmonic on July 1, 2017 

 

 

June 6, 2017; Fresno, CA—Conductor Rei Hotoda has been named the new Music Director of the Fresno Philharmonic. Ms. Hotoda has signed a four-year contract, and will serve as the eighth Music Director for the orchestra. She succeeds Theodore Kuchar, who stepped down in June 2016 after leading the ensemble for 15 years.

Ms. Hotoda’s tenure as the newly appointed Music Director of the Fresno Philharmonic begins on July 1, 2017 and her inaugural concert as Music Director will be on October 15, 2017. In this position she will provide overall artistic leadership through conducting the orchestra in main series performances throughout the season; develop and broaden programing that will enliven current audiences and engage those new to the organization; work with the board of directors, musicians and administration on developing and articulating a compelling artistic vision for the Fresno Philharmonic as a 21st century orchestra; and cultivate and create partnerships with other cultural institutions that will celebrate and embrace the diverse community in Fresno.

Ms. Hotoda remarked: “It is my extreme honor and absolute pleasure to be appointed as the next Music Director of the Fresno Philharmonic. To work with musicians of this caliber, who are committed to performing at the highest level and who have a remarkable spirit of adventure, truly matches my enthusiasm for expanding their reach to the widest audiences possible. To know that this incredible orchestra is supported by an engaged and active Board and a willing and enthusiastic administration that is poised and ready to begin a new era for the organization, is so inspiring. I can’t wait to get started and to become part of the wonderful community of Fresno.”

Mr. Stephen Wilson, President and CEO of the Fresno Philharmonic, commented: “The Fresno Philharmonic is proud to announce Rei Hotoda as our next Music Director. Her remarkable talent, enthusiastic leadership style, deep devotion to inclusiveness, and insatiable curiosity for the world around her makes her the perfect collaborative partner for us. As we turn the page on a new chapter for the orchestra, her insight and willingness to work with the musicians, board and staff to strengthen the Philharmonic through innovative programming and relationship building, while deepening our commitment to the diverse community we serve, will help to propel us into the 21st century.”

Dr. Judith L. Kuipers, Board Chair of the Fresno Philharmonic, said: “I am so thrilled to welcome Rei Hotoda as the next Music Director of the Fresno Philharmonic. The high level of engagement and enthusiasm from our audience members and patrons, who actively and passionately took part in our selection process, ensured that we not only made the right choice for the Philharmonic, but the right one for our community.  On behalf of the Board and administration of the Fresno Philharmonic, we thank everyone for their support and participation, and we look forward with great anticipation to the start of Maestra Hotoda’s tenure.”

Contact: Raechel Alexander / ralexander@ra-completecommunications.com / 917-815-8790