The department is pleased to welcome Dr. Jace Kaholokula Saplan, Interim Director of Choral Activities. As an alumnus of the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa and the first Native Hawaiian to receive a DMA in Choral Conducting, Dr. Saplan is excited to serve a community that is close to his heart. He states, “It is a gift to work for an institution that champions and celebrates the learners of Hawai’i Nei. After spending some time away from home, I am humbled to have the opportunity to give back to a community that has given so much to me and my ‘ohana.”
As a frequent clinician and adjudicator at the local, regional, and national level, and a scholar of Hawaiian choral music, he has an active semester of travel. This month he travels to California to conduct the Brave New Voices: Indigenous Youth Honor Choir, and to Idaho to present lectures and workshops on choral repertoire and pedagogy from the Pacific Rim at Lewis-Clark State College and the University of Idaho. He will then serve as a visiting artist for the choral program at the University of Montana, and lead conducting masterclasses with both students and choral educators in the area. Following his residency in Montana, he will headline the American Choral Directors Relevance Conference to speak on the evolution of Hawaiian choral music at North Dakota State University.
Welina mai, e Dr. Saplan!