Chicagoan selected to lead Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra
The Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra today will introduce Dave Moss as its new executive director.
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The Hawai‘i Symphony
Orchestra today will introduce Dave Moss as its new executive director.
Moss, 34, will be leaving the Haymarket Opera Company in Chicago, which
specializes in historically authentic productions of 17th- and 18th-century opera. He started as a volunteer and rose to general manager and then executive director, helping it become the country’s most active company of its kind. In addition to that “on-the-job” experience, he has also completed the League of Orchestras’ Essentials of Orchestra Management program.
In a phone call, the Chicago native said he is eager to “start listening to the community and getting to know how the symphony can serve the community.”
He said he was intrigued by the history of classical music in Hawaii — the original Honolulu Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1900 and was the second-oldest symphony west of the Rockies — and the quality of the current orchestra, which he heard in a recent performance of Prokofiev’s 10th symphony.
“The quality of the musicians, it absolutely blew me away,” he said, “and this is from a guy who grew up listening to the Chicago Symphony.” The Chicago Symphony is one of the “Big Five” orchestras in America, along with New York, Cleveland, Boston and Philadelphia.
Moss studied viola at Oberlin Conservatory and Juilliard. He worked as a freelance musician in New York and Chicago playing with orchestras as well as getting gigs with rapper Kanye West, blues musician Corky Siegel and jazz pianist Jon Baptiste of “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.”
“It was really interesting for me as a performer to learn all these different genres,” he said. “Here it will be a very different thing perhaps, but I think there are things we can learn from that.”
Moss replaces Jonathan Parrish, who left to head the Maryland Symphony Orchestra in September.