Conductors & Teachers

Henry Miyamura

Music Director & Conductor, Youth Symphony I

A lifelong resident of Hawaii, Henry Miyamura is a McKinley High School graduate. He received a Bachelor of Music degree and a Performers’ Certificate from the Eastman School of Music as well as a Master of Music degree from Western Washington University. His numerous credits include 14 years as band director at McKinley High School; principal clarinetist with the Honolulu Symphony; membership in the Eastman Wind Ensemble, the Hillel Chamber Concert Orchestra, and the Rochester Philharmonic. Mr. Miyamura also served as Assistant Conductor for the Honolulu Symphony which gave him the opportunity to conduct concerts featuring Wynton Marsalis, trumpet; David Bar-Ilan, piano; Joshua Bell, violin;Charles Treger, violin; and Harvey Pittel, saxophone as well as other Hawaii entertainers. After 35 years, Mr. Miyamura recently retired as Professor of Music at the University of Hawaii at Manoa and conductor of the UH Symphony Orchestra. He also serves as music director for HYS and has been since 1984. He conducts HYS’s top orchestra, Youth Symphony I, as well as directs HYS’s Pacific Music Institute during the summer. Mr. Miyamura was named as winner of the prestigious 2001 Alfred Preis Award by the Hawaii Alliance for Arts Education for his lifetime commitment to arts and education in Hawaii. He is also the recipient of the 2007 Governor’s Award for Fine Arts.

Derrick Yamane

Conductor, Youth Symphony II

Derrick Yamane received both his Master of Secondary Education and Bachelor of Music Education degrees from the University of Hawaii – Manoa. A retired music teacher, he has taught music at various public and private schools on Oahu since 1971. Eleven of those years were also spent as HYS’s Concert Orchestra Conductor. He credits Mr. Hajime Kuwada, his mentor, and Mr. James Uyeda, his inspiration, for encouraging him to pursue music as a profession.  He has appeared as guest conductor of the Colorado All-State Honor Band (Gunnison), Oahu Band Director’s 8th Grade Select Band, and Maui District Massed and Select Band.  Mr. Yamane is a lifetime member of the Oahu Band Director’s Association, Music Educators National Conference and the Hawaii Music Educators Association.

Elton Masaki

Assistant Conductor, Youth Symphony II

Elton Masaki holds a Bachelor of Education degree in Secondary Education with an emphasis in music from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and a Master of Music in Education degree from Boston University. He is currently working on a PhD in Education with an emphasis in technology from the University of Hawaii. Mr. Masaki is the orchestra director at Mid-Pacific Institute where he has been conducting since 2005. He has also taught orchestra at Kamehameha Schools and Iolani School and the Hawaii Youth Symphony String Program. Mr. Masaki also serves as an orchestra clinician for a number of different camps and workshops and manages his own string quartet. Professional affiliations include American String Teacher Association and Association for Education and Communication Technology.

Susan Ochi-Onishi

Conductor, Concert Orchestra

Susan Ochi-Onishi has been with Kaimuki Middle since 1993, directing the Beginning and Advanced Concert Bands. Mrs. Ochi-Onishi graduated from the University of Hawaii at Manoa with a Bachelor of Music degree in 1984 and a PDMUS Secondary Music Education degree in 1987. She received a Master of Music degree in 1985 from Northwestern University, where she studied the oboe under Ray Still (Chicago Symphony Orchestra) and the English horn under Grover Schiltz (CSO). Mrs. Ochi-Onishi is a member of the OBDA, HMEA, MENC, and is presently serving as President for the Hawaii Chapter of the American School Band Directors Association.

Hannah Watanabe

Associate Conductor, Concert Orchestra

Hannah Watanabe is a graduate of the University of Hawaii at Manoa, where she received a bachelor’s degree in music education. She is also a former member of the Hawaii Youth Symphony, in which she performed while a student at Kalani High School. She is currently teaching orchestra at Moanalua Middle School, and also taught at Hawaii Baptist Academy,Moanalua High School and Kalani High School. Mrs. Watanabe is a member of the Music Educators National Conference and the Hawaii Music Educators Association.

Charlotte Fukumoto

String Program Coordinator

Charlotte Fukumoto has been HYS’s String Program Coordinator since 1995. She retired from the Department of Education after 27 years of service. Thirteen of those years were spent working with the string orchestra program at Moanalua Intermediate. She has been a string repair technician at Music Center of Hawaii and a string clinician at Kamehameha Middle School. Ms. Fukumoto chaired the Senior Honor All-State Orchestra while teaching for the Kamehameha Schools intermediate orchestra from 1995-1996. She has also taught English as a second language at McKinley Community School for Adults.

Chad Uyehara

Conductor, Concert String Orchestra & Intermediate String Ensemble

An alumnus of HYS, Chad Uyehara conducts the Concert String Orchestra and Intermediate String Ensemble. He also teaches the Summer Strings classes. Mr. Uyehara received his Master’s of Music in Music Education and Viola Performance from Northwestern University. He earned his Bachelor’s of Music in Violin Performance, Bachelor’s of Arts in French, and membership in Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Hawaii. He is also a graduate of Punahou School. Mr. Uyehara has performed on violin and viola with the Las Vegas Philharmonic, Desert Springs Chamber Orchestra, and the Honolulu Symphony. Other performance interests include Celtic fiddling and viola da gamba consort repertoire. He has taught orchestra with the Clark County School District in Nevada, the Las Vegas Youth Philharmonic, and the Hawaii Department of Education at Kalani High School, Kaimuki Middle School, and Moanalua Elementary. Currently, he teaches orchestra at Saint Andrew’s Priory and maintains a Suzuki violin/viola studio. He is also president  for the Hawaii chapter of the American String Teachers Association. Other professional affiliations include Suzuki Association of the Americans, Music Educators National Conference, American Viola Society, and the Viola da Gamba Society of America.

Helen Fong

String Program Sectional Coach

Helen Fong assists all levels of the String Program. Mrs. Fong has a bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Marywood University in Scranton, Pennsylvania. She taught strings and chorus in the Scranton public schools from 1974-1992. She was a violist with the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic and various chamber and community orchestras. Locally, Mrs. Fong has taught at McKinley High School, Le Jardin Academy, Aiea Intermediate School and Wheeler Middle School. She currenly teaches music at Dole Middle School.

Joan Doike

Conductor, Beginning String Ensemble & String Orchestra Ensemble

Joan Doike directed orchestras in the HYS program for fourteen years prior to moving to Indiana. While in Indiana, she taught at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music Pre-College String Academy. Ms. Doike currently teaches the HYS Beginning String Ensemble, and gives private lessons. As a student, Ms. Doike was a violinist in HYS while at Kaimuki Intermediate and Kalani High schools and she continued on to receive her Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Hawaii. Her two daughters, niece and nephew are also HYS alumni and are currently pursuing bachelor’s degrees in music.

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