Meet Maestro Morihiko Nakahara

Photo by Hamilton Studios

Photo by Hamilton Studios

The GAMAC Chamber Orchestra is thrilled to welcome Maestro Morihiko Nakahara to Anderson as its guest conductor for the opening concert of the 2016-2017 Masterworks Series titled Oktoberfest on Friday, October 7, 2016 at 7:30pm in The Rainey Fine Arts Center at Anderson University. Billed as a “whirlwind musical journey to Germany,” the evening will feature Mendelssohn’s Nocturno for Winds in C Major, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 in F Major “Pastorale,” and a special performance of J.S. Bach’s Concerto for Keyboard & Orchestra in D minor with pianist Matthew Carden Ganong.

Maestro Nakahara has served as music director of the South Carolina Philharmonic since 2008. The 2016-2017 season also marks his 14th season with the Spokane Symphony Orchestra, first as its associate conductor and now as resident conductor. Known for his charismatic presence on and off the podium, innovative and audience-friendly programming skills, and thoughtful interpretations of both standard and contemporary repertoire, Nakahara was featured in the League of American Orchestra’s prestigious Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview in March 2005, hosted by the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. Since then, he has developed a close working relationship with the JSO, conducting the orchestra regularly and serving as its associate conductor during the 2007-2008 season. Recent and upcoming guest conducting engagements include appearances with the Buffalo Philharmonic, symphonies of Oregon, Charleston, Chattanooga, Lansing, Peoria, and Green Bay, as well as with the Chicago Pro Musica. Recipient of the David Effron Conducting Fellowship at the Chautauqua Institution in 1999, he recently returned to guest conduct the Music School Festival Orchestra there.

Equally at home in a wide variety of musical styles and concert formats, Nakahara has collaborated with Chris Botti, Béla Fleck & the Flecktones, Brandi Carlile, Pink Martini, Sergio Mendes, and Roby Lakatos to name a few. A tireless champion for the music of our times, Nakahara recently led world premieres of works by Joan Tower, Dan Visconti, and John Fitz Rogers. A passionate believer in audience development and music education for all, Nakahara is a popular clinician, guest conductor, and lecturer at various educational institutions. As a personable ambassador for classical music, he is regularly featured on local media outlets, and speaks about wide ranging topics including arts advocacy, leadership skills, and economic development at local businesses and service organizations. A native of Kagoshima, Japan, Nakahara holds degrees from Andrews University and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. He previously served as music director of the Holland Symphony Orchestra in Michigan and taught at Eastern Washington University and Andrews University.

Tickets to Oktoberfest are on sale now and priced at $20 for adults and $10 for students. Maestro Nakahara’s appearance with the GAMAC Chamber Orchestra is made possible with generous support from Techtronic Industries North America, Inc., The Bleckley Inn and Lilia Day Spa. Support is also provided in part by The South Carolina Arts Commission which receives support in part from the National Endowment for the Arts.