Dave Moss Named Executive Director of Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra

Acclaimed and boldly creative arts leader Dave Moss has been named the second executive director of the Hawaiʽi Symphony Orchestra.

(HONOLULU, HI, February 13, 2020) – “Dave Moss’ appointment comes at an exciting time for the Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra. Audiences are growing, fundraising has increased, and we’re offering a diversity of concert and community programs. These all demonstrate the symphony’s commitment to serving music lovers of all ages,” said Board Chair Paul J. Kosasa. Moss begins his new role on March 10, 2020.

Dave Moss has been named the second executive director of the Hawai’i Symphony Orchestra

Kosasa added, “The Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra is embracing this new decade with energetic musical artistry, innovative performances, and an expanded commitment to arts education. Dave Moss is a leader who will inspire the performing arts community. I am confident and optimistic that under his leadership the HSO will continue to entertain, enrich, and delight audiences of all backgrounds across our state.”

Dave Moss responded with, “As I’ve gotten to know musicians, board members, staff and volunteers with the Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra, I’ve been overwhelmed by the warmth of the community, the phenomenal artistry of the musicians, and the dedication to this cherished organization across stakeholders and audience members. I’m eager to serve this community and together build an engaging, sustainable future full of music for all of Hawaii.”

Moss is currently executive director of Haymarket Opera Company, one of Chicago’s most dynamic and fastest-growing arts organizations. During his tenure, the organization garnered international acclaim for its performances described as “finely played, carefully sung, loving detailed” by The New York Times. Haymarket’s Board President Sarah Harding offered, “Dave Moss has been an invaluable asset to the Haymarket Opera Company. His wisdom, energy, and dedication to the organization have helped solidify its reputation as one of the preeminent early music organizations in the nation.” 

The international search that led to Moss’ appointment was conducted by the Catherine French Group. Lead search consultant Henry Fogel, former president of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and League of American Orchestras, commented, “We considered candidates from all over the world. The more we discovered, it was clear that Dave Moss is the right person for the job. He has the combination of knowledge, experience, and personality to be a perfect fit for the Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra.”

Search committee co-chairs Kenneth S. Robbins and Jason Kravitt, respectively secretary and treasurer of the HSO board, remarked, “We were deeply impressed by the many outstanding candidates who applied for the position. The final choice was difficult, but the entire committee believes that Dave Moss is uniquely poised to help the Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra achieve a new level of impact and become an even more valued cultural treasure on our islands.”

“As I’ve gotten to know musicians, board members, staff and volunteers with the Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra, I’ve been overwhelmed by the warmth of the community, the phenomenal artistry of the musicians, and the dedication to this cherished organization across stakeholders and audience members. I’m eager to serve this community and together build an engaging, sustainable future full of music for all of Hawaii.”

Before his successful tenure at Haymarket Opera Company, Moss was a noted violist who studied at The Juilliard School and performed with leading artists Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, and Renée Fleming.

HSO Artistic Advisor JoAnn Falletta, also music director of the Buffalo Philharmonic and Virginia Symphony, said, “I’ve worked with talented executives at orchestras across the country and Dave Moss possesses the acumen and drive to take the Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra to its next level. I’m particularly excited that in addition to his experience as an organizational leader, he’s a gifted musician who will keep all the parts of our beloved orchestra working cohesively in harmony.”

The search committee was comprised of HSO board members, HSO musicians, and community representatives. Search committee member and HSO concertmaster Iggy Jang added, “Dave Moss’ addictive enthusiasm was felt from the moment he stepped into the room. I was impressed by his command of artistic and administrative knowledge, communicative skills, and vision for an HSO that touches everyone’s life. Most of all, I felt his desire to embrace our beloved islands was genuine.”

Moss succeeds Jonathan Parrish, a former principal horn of the orchestra who served as executive director since its founding in 2011 and became executive director of the Maryland Symphony Orchestra last November. Since then, former Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra executive director and Detroit Symphony Orchestra senior executive Scott Harrison has served as interim executive director to ensure a smooth organizational transition. Prior to his official start in March, Moss will be in Honolulu February 14-19, 2020 to meet with key stakeholders and civic leaders.

The HSO Musicians Welcome Incoming Executive Director Dave Moss.

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