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Classical Pacific June 12, 2017

John C. Zak
John C. Zak

Welcome to Classical Pacific on Hawaii Public Radio HPR 2. I’m your host, John Kalani Zak.

Welcome to Classical Pacific for Monday, June 12, 2017, Kamehameha Day in the Islands. It continues to be a long weekend of celebration of Kamehameha the Great, unifier of the Hawaiian Islands, with parades, the draping of the Kamehameha statues across the islands, and many other commemorations.

This past Saturday, I had the pleasure of attending the final Hawaii Symphony concert featuring pianist, Andre Watts, performing Rachmaninoff 2. It was a brilliant performance, and the audience showed its true appreciation with a lengthy standing ovation. Maestro Otomo also acknowledged musicians in the orchestra who have been with the organization for many years. One veteran play had been with the symphony for 40 plus years.  I encourage those of you who are reading this to sign up for season tickets to next year’s Saturday night performances of the Symphony, as I intend to do. It is truly a perfect evening, beginning with the pre-concert talk-story sessions hosted by concert master, Iggy Jang. Let’s support this organization that brings so much to our community. With Michael Titterton on board, there are sure to be many delightful surprises.    

Last week was also memorable as I had the pleasure of spending my birthday evening in conversation with Andre Watts and Iggy Jang at the Atherton Performing Arts Studio. It was an invitation-only event followed by a  reception, which we recorded and then broadcast this past Friday night on HPR 2’s “Big Ears Club” segment of Classical Pacific. Both Andre and Iggy  shared about their young years as musicians, discussing commitment, ways to teach young people, and talking about what it means to make a life in music. The conversation will be available as a podcast on HPR’s website within the week. If you did not get the opportunity to listen this past Friday, please listen later. This will be of particular interest to music educators and to parents and loved ones of young, aspiring musicians, and  to those interested in inspiring a love for music on the part of  the keiki in their lives. One of the big takeaways I got from the interview is how important it is to give children diverse and interesting life experiences at a young age, rather than  just wrapping up  and giving them yet another plastic toy to be tossed away quickly. Travel and the experience of interacting with other cultures are key to opening a child’s feelings and thinking. How fortunate we are in Hawaii to have such a diverse representation of cultures here in our own home..                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Classical Pacific began in February, 2017, as a result of Hawaii Public Radio’s ongoing commitment to give listeners across Hawaii and around the world more of what they love, on two networks: HPR 1 and HPR 2. Airing five days a week at 3 P.M. Hawaii time, the series  features the finest of the world’s classical music, while also shining a spotlight on orchestras, artists, and composers of the Pacific region, including Polynesia, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, The U.S., Canada, China, Japan, Korea, Russia, Indonesia, New Zealand and Australia. We’ll also add spice with indigenous and World music that is creating new musical languages and collaborations worldwide.

Classical Pacific and all Hawaii Public Radio programs are available online at our website: You can also download the free app for your mobile device and take HPR with you whenever and wherever you travel! Just type H - P - R in the search box of your App. store!

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