2nd Annual International String Gala with special guests 'Iolani School Orchestra

Wed. March 20, 2019

7:30 p.m.

Bella Concert Hall

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The 2nd Annual International String Gala at the Bella Concert hall will feature the internationally recognized ‘Iolani School Orchestra, coming from Honolulu, Hawaii, as well as members of Calgary’s finest string programs and ensembles.

Iolani' School Orchestra
The ‘Iolani Orchestra program includes 8 orchestras, a Suzuki program, and an extensive chamber music program. 'Iolani School is one of only two orchestras in the state to hold a yearly Concerto Concert, allowing students the chance to solo with orchestra. The most advanced group, the 'Iolani Symphony, was chosen by very competitive national audition to perform at the 2011 Midwest Clinic International Conference; their performance included the American premiere of Balzene Suite by contemporary Hungarian composer György Orbán and a performance of Pictures at an Exhibition as arranged by Brazillian composer Clarice Assad. The 'Iolani Symphony was also awarded the Live from Lincoln Center Award, an unusual and prestigious recognition. Our award-winning video of Orbán's Balzene Suite can be seen on the Live From Lincoln Center YouTube Channel. The 'Iolani Middle School Orchestra has twice won the National Championship in the American String Teachers Association National Orchestra Competition (2010, 2013). The 'Iolani Orchestra is the only orchestra from the state to win this national competition. In addition to their participation in this orchestra, ‘Iolani students are also members of the Hawai‘i Youth Symphony, various chamber music ensembles, and the Hawai‘i Suzuki Strings. They participate in a wide variety of sports, and are also artists, debaters, scientists, writers, and community organizers.

Katharine Hafner, Orchestra Director & Conductor
Katharine Hafner is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music and Indiana University. Before moving to Hawai‘i in 1980 to join the Honolulu Symphony, she taught in the Eastman Preparatory Department and Music Center of the North Shore (Chicago) and built an award-winning high school orchestra in Williamsville, New York. Now in her twelfth year as orchestra director at ‘Iolani School, she is committed to the growth of the entire orchestra program. She oversees the chamber music program, has initiated the ‘Iolani Suzuki Program, and has led the ‘Iolani orchestra in performances for the State Arts Alliance and in collaboration with professional soloists. Her student orchestras have won five national awards ad competitions in the past five years. While continuing to play professionally in the first violin section of the Hawaii Symphony, she maintains a full studio of private students. She has been the Director of the Hawai‘i Suzuki Institute since 1986, President of the Hawai‘i Chapter of the American String Teachers Association, and a Board Member of the Hawai‘i Music Teachers Association. As a board member of the Suzuki Association of Hawai‘i, she has initiated and organized many clinics, workshops, concerts and institutes for Hawai‘i's Suzuki community over the past 30 years. Her advanced student tour group has made performance tours to Arizona, New Mexico, Canada, New Zealand, and Italy. Her former students include members of the Cleveland Orchestra, the National Symphony, and the Columbus Symphony.