Keitaro Harada, who conducts the TSO Rocks the Fox series, has been selected for the League of American Orchestras' biennial showcase.


PCC conductor to show off vocal prowess

We don't often see Pima Community College conductor Jonathan Ng on the other side of the baton, but on Sunday he will show off his vocal prowess in a recital of art songs.

Ng, a classically trained lyric tenor, will perform Beethoven art songs, Bel Canto repertoire from Handel's oratorios and operas, and music by Renaissance composers for male quartet. He'll sing countertenor on those numbers with fellow countertenor Jose "Chach" Snook, tenor Stephen Warner and bass Darryl King. Soprano Krista Flora and pianist Suzanne Eanes also will perform.

The recital begins at 3 p.m. Sunday at the PCC Center for the Arts Recital Hall, 2202 W. Anklam Road. Tickets are $6, with discounts available at the door, or at online. For details and to order by phone, call 206-6986.

St. Olaf Choir coming to UA's Centennial Hall

Long before there was "Glee" or "Pitch Perfect," the St. Olaf Choir made it cool to be a chorister.

It started out more than 50 years ago with a mission to prepare singers to perform the gamut of the classical choral literature, from religious repertoire to more contemporary works.

Today it has 75 members, who will pack the Centennial Hall stage at 7 p.m. Monday. The concert, which is not part of the UApresents season, comes at the tail end of the group's 2012-13 tour of the West Coast, with stops in Seattle, Oregon, California and Arizona. The group also will perform at the Mesa Arts Center on Sunday. Anton Armstrong will conduct.

Tickets are $26 to $38 through

UA alum tapped for conducting showcase

Former University of Arizona fellow Keitaro Harada is one of six emerging conductors chosen for the 2013 Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview, the League of American Orchestras' biennial showcase funded by a grant from the Walter's namesake memorial foundation.

As one of the conductors chosen, Harada, 27, will get 40 minutes of podium time with the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra in a concert March 13. The audience will include orchestra administrators and artist managers from across the country. The idea is to expose the conductors to possible employers, opening up opportunities that often take years to realize. It also gives orchestras a chance to see talent that might fit with their needs, organizers said.

Ninety conductors applied to be part of the 2013 preview, organizers said.

Harada, who was a fellow in the inaugural UA Rogers Institute for Orchestral and Opera Conducting Fellowship in 2008, is music director and conductor of the Phoenix Youth Symphony. He also is an assistant conductor with Arizona Opera and this season is conducting the Tucson Symphony Orchestra's TSO Rocks the Fox series at Fox Tucson Theatre. The next concert is April 5, featuring vocalist Michael Shotton doing the music of Queen.

Since the first event in 1995, 75 conductors have been showcased and more than 50 landed impressive guest shots and posts, including Mei-Ann Chen, music director of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra and Chicago Sinfonietta; and Nashville Symphony Orchestra music director Giancarlo Guerrero, according to the League of American Orchestras.

Asia, Pines give sneak preview of new opera

Tucson composer Daniel Asia and New York poet Paul Pines talked for nearly 10 years about turning Pines' 1983 novel "The Tin Angel" into an opera.

Three years ago, the talk turned to action. And on Wednesday, the action will be on the Crowder Hall stage as Asia and Pines give Tucson a sneak peek at the work.

This is Asia's first opera, although the University of Arizona composition professor has composed several symphonies, chamber works and concerti.

The story follows Pablo Waitz, a jazz club owner in Manhattan's Lower East Side in the 1970s. Waitz is trying to find out who killed his partner during a botched drug deal. Other characters include Maria, the sister of the dead dealer, the club's wait and kitchen staffs, and the ghost of Pablo's father.

Asia summarized the story as one "about music, redemption and the complications of a life well-lived."

Asia said he has had several opera companies express interest in "The Tin Angel," but no one has committed yet to premiering it.

"I think this is a fun opera. People are going to dig it, quite frankly," he said. "The problem is the opera world is a completely different world. Even though I'm a well-known composer, in the opera world I'm completely unknown. They know me from nothing."

During Wednesday's event, which starts at 7:30 p.m., Asia will show a video of a 2012 partial performance of the work in New York, and students will perform 10 minutes of the opera live. Admission is free. Crowder is located at North Park Avenue and East Speedway.

Time to submit Lumies Arts, business award nominations

Start spreading the news - the Tucson Pima Arts Council is looking for nominations for the 2013 Lumies Arts & Business Awards.

The organization seeks Tucsonans and Tucson businesses who have kept the arts alive by making it, performing it, teaching it, supporting it, and/or incorporating it into a business's fabric.

It's not a big cash award - though winners do take home a beautiful Tom Philabaum-made glass piece. It carries some prestige and the undying gratitude of your fellow art lovers.

The deadline for nominations is March 22. Check out TPAC's website - - for nomination categories and more information. You can also call TPAC at 624-0595, ext. 14.

Nominees will be announced in April, and winners announced at the June 7 ceremony at the El Casino Ballroom, which is a piece of art itself.

Cathalena E. Burch Kathleen Allen