Story last updated at 10/14/2009 - 1:37 pm
SITKA - Distinguished artists from Juneau, Sitka and Japan will celebrate Alaska Day with the Alaska Exchange Classics concert that will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 17 at the Sitka High School Performing Arts Center. The program includes performances by Megumi Fujita of Japan, violinist Steve Tada, pianist Sue Kazama and Juneau Lyric Opera vocalists Kathleen and Dan Wayne.
Megumi Fujita was the concertmistress for the New City Symphony of Tokyo for 24 years. This will be her fourth year attending and performing for Sitka's Alaska Day festivities. After her first visit, she produced a CD, "Memories of Sitka," and she has continued to work with other Sitka musicians since. She currently resides in Tokyo teaching her students and playing in her chamber orchestra, Fiore Ensemble.
Steve Tada began playing the violin at the age of five through the Seattle Suzuki School under the instruction of Mihiko Hirata. He later studied at the University of Washington in Seattle. He has participated in many chamber concerts with the Bravura String Quartet and has served as concertmaster of the Juneau Symphony.
Sue Kazama has been a part of the Juneau music community for over 30 years. She has been active as a piano teacher and accompanist, working with such groups as the Juneau Symphony, Juneau Lyric Opera, Opera To Go, the Juneau Bach Society, the University of Alaska Southeast, Juneau Jazz and Classics and the Juneau School District. She has also performed in Sitka whenever the opportunity has arisen.
Kathleen Wayne teaches voice lessons in Juneau in addition to performing in concerts and operas. She has sung title roles in many productions by the Juneau Lyric Opera. She has also appeared as a soloist with the Juneau Symphony and as a guest artist with Opera Fairbanks.
Dan Wayne obtained a choir scholarship at Loyola-Marymount University, between summers working in a Wrangell fish freezer. He met his wife, Kathleen, at the first opera rehearsal he ever went to. He has performed in many plays, operas and concerts since his first performance at the 1978 Southeast Music Festival in Sitka.
Also appearing at the Alaska Exchange Classics concert will be the SitNiks, Suzuki Strings of Sitka, the New Archangel Dancers and the Sitka High School Choir. Admission to the event is $10 with tickets available at the door. For more information, contact Kris Fulton at 738-3101.