An Orchestral Aloha

Youth Musicians Travel to Hawaii to Fill Education Gap
by Sala Levin '10

Hawaii may be a paradise of natural wonders, but when it comes to opportunities for post-secondary music education, the islands can be more of a desert. For students thousands of miles—and an expensive plane ride—away from the mainland, the idea of continuing to study music after high school can seem fruitless.

So when John Devlin M.M. ’11, D.M.A. ’15 became music director of the Hawaii Youth Symphony and artistic director of the annual Pacific Music Institute festival, he leveraged his East Coast connections—namely, his ties to UMD’s School of Music—to create additional opportunities for music students in Hawaii to study with high-level teachers from the local community and the lower 48.

In July, six students plus staff from the National Orchestral Institute (NOI), a month-long training program at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center for highly talented young musicians, will travel to Honolulu to teach and mentor high school students in Hawaii as part of the two-week Pacific Music Institute.

The partnership represents an “opportunity to have additional perspectives brought through a collaboration with the outstanding faculty of NOI,” says Devlin.

To Richard Scerbo, director of NOI, the collaboration demonstrates “how the arts at Maryland are really far-reaching, even to places like Hawaii.”


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