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Evening of Concertos 2019

2019 Evening of Concertos Concert BYU–Hawaii

On Wednesday, November 27, 2019, at 7:30 pm in the McKay Auditorium, the BYUH Music Program presents An Evening of Concertos, featuring the BYUH Concert Choir, members of the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra [HSO], musicians from the BYUH Chamber Orchestra, and the 2019 Concerto Competition winners: Hansol (Kelly) Lee (piano), Calista Ngati Au (soprano), Momoe Sakurai (timpani), Mouria Ngati Au (piano), Rachel Hurtado Dunbar (lyric mezzo-soprano), and Sarah Knight (mezzo-soprano).

A much-anticipated event, this program brings together aspiring young artists and seasoned professionals to perform dazzling virtuoso works from the classical, contemporary, and sacred-choral traditions. The orchestra includes HSO professionals, student-instrumentalists from BYUH, and faculty members from the Music Program. Maestro Ernest Taniguchi will lead the choir in Dominick Argento's Gloria from The Masque of Angels and the student-soloists in their performances of concerto movements or arias by Ravel, Wagner, Peterson, Scriabin, and Delibes.

The association between the BYUH Music Department and HSO began several decades ago when Dr. James A. Smith, then director of the choral/vocal program, hired musicians to perform oratorios with the Concert Choir. The concerto competition was added in 1998, giving pianists, instrumentalists, and singers the opportunity to solo with an orchestra of professionals. This year's concert is the ninth in the series, each of which has been organized by Scott McCarrey. The 2019 selection committee was comprised of faculty members from the BYUH Music Program.


From New York's Carnegie Hall to venues across northern China, Mongolia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan, the BYUH Concert Choir, under the direction of Professor Michael Belnap, has delighted audiences with its repertoire of spirituals, musical theater pieces, lively folk-arrangements, and sacred music.

Ernest Taniguchi is currently Music Director of the Chamber Orchestra and the North Shore Symphonic Wind Orchestra at BYUH. Previously he has served as Music Director and Guest Conductor of the Honolulu Wind Ensemble, and has conducted musical theatre for Army Community Theatre and Manoa Valley Theatre, garnering a 2007 Po’okela Award for Best Music Direction. Presently Mr. Taniguchi is one of several directors of the Hawaii Symphonic Band. He has studied with Maestro Takashi Asahina (1908–2001), Music Director of the Osaka Philharmonic. With Maestro Antoni Wit (b. 1944), former Artistic Director of the Warsaw Philharmonic and current Music Director of the Orquesta Sinfónica de Navarra, he served as his assistant in St. Petersburg, Russia, Krakow, Poland, and in Indianapolis. Mr. Taniguchi has also served as Director of the Kahuku High School "Pride of the North Shore" Symphonic Band and Assistant Director of the inaugural Hawaii All-State Marching Band at the 2003 Tournament of Roses Parade. He has conducted workshops for members of the National Philharmonic of Jamaica and has been invited to guest conduct in the near future. Mr. Taniguchi has previously worked with musicians of the HSO in An Evening of Concertos (2015, 2017) and Songs of the Seven Seas (2016) concerts on the campus of BYUH.

The Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra, formerly known as the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra, was founded in 1900. [It] is the second oldest orchestra in the USA west of the Rocky Mountains. Originally housed in a clubhouse on the slopes of Punchbowl, the Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra now plays from the Neal S. Blaisdell Concert Hall in downtown Honolulu (, accessed October 31, 2015).


Originally from Paju, South Korea, Hansol (Kelly) Lee began piano lessons at the age of ten. A senior majoring in piano performance, Kelly won second prize in the 2019 BYUH Music Scholarship Competition. Presently she teaches young pianists from the community through the BYUH Youth Conservatory, as well as non-majors for the music program. She enjoys performing with the Salsa and World-jazz Orchestras and studies with Stacy McCarrey.

Calista Ngati Au is a blossoming dramatic soprano from Chandler, Arizona. At the age of ten, she began taking voice lessons in contemporary and musical-theater styles. In later years she participated with various ensembles and musicals, which helped her develop a love of music. Calista graduated from BYUH in 2019 with a degree in vocal performance, where she studied with Michael Belnap, who introduced her to classical singing. As a student, Calista performed regularly with the BYUH Concert Choir, the Salsa Orchestra, and Broadway Cabaret. She is currently a member of the O‘ahu Choral Society, performing with the Symphonic Chorus and the Honolulu Chamber Choir.

Momoe Sakurai is a senior majoring in percussion performance. From Kanagawa, Japan, she began piano lessons at the age of five. In her teenage years she began playing percussion in brass-band ensembles. As a senior in high school she focused on timpani, which is now her favorite instrument. A student of Darren Duerden, she has performed as a marimba soloist on multiple occasions, as a member of the Polynesian Drumming Ensemble, in Shaka Steel, and with the Salsa Orchestra.

Mouria B. Ngati Au is a junior from the Cook Islands majoring in piano performance. He received his first piano lessons at the age of six. His formal education in music theory, history, and piano began at Westlake Boys High School in New Zealand before his acceptance as a scholarship student at the Australian International Performing Arts High School (now Australian Performing Arts Grammar). In 2015, Mouria entered BYUH and now studies with Jennifer Duerden. The first-prize winner of the 2019 BYUH Music Scholarship Competition, he is active in a variety of ensembles including Concert Choir and Salsa Orchestra.

Rachel Hurtado Dunbar is a lyric mezzo-soprano from El Paso, Texas, who enjoys performing the music of Latin America. A 2019 graduate of BYUH in vocal performance, she is currently pursuing a master's degree in music at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa [UHM]. A member of the Mae Z. Orvis Opera Studio, Rachel has performed with the Hawai‘i Opera Chorus in Hawai‘i Opera Theatre’s productions of Eugene Onegin and Romeo and Juliet. Rachel's private teachers include Melissa Glenn (BYUH) and Maya Hoover (UHM).

Mezzo-soprano Sarah Knight recently returned from the Utah Vocal Arts Academy where she studied and performed roles from The Barber of Seville, The Magic Flute, and Così fan tutte. She has sung with the Hawai‘i Opera Chorus in Hawai‘i Opera Theatre's production of Romeo and Juliet. Sarah is a member of the Mae Z. Orvis Opera Studio. A vocal performance major and student of Melissa Glenn, Sarah is eager to continue her training in graduate school after she completes her degree in vocal performance at BYUH.

Location: McKay Auditorium

Admission: free, tickets may be picked at the Aloha Center Front Desk, and are available from Friday, November 15, until 5:00 p.m. on the day of the concert.

Date: Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Time: 7:30 pm

*Reserved seating will be in effect until 7:20 p.m. on the day of the concert at which time unused seats will opened to those without tickets on a first-come, first-serve basis.

*Children under the age of eight will not be admitted. Recording and photography are prohibited.