Hisao Watanabe has established an exciting professional conducting career based upon a fascinating and rich musical background. Prior to joining Lane Community College, he was the founder and Music Director of the Lexington Sinfonietta in Lexington, Massachusetts and taught at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina as Director of Orchestra. He has been a frequent guest conductor, appearing with the Civic Symphony Orchestra of Boston, Pioneer Valley Symphony, the Longwood Symphony Orchestra, Wellesley Symphony Orchestra, and the North Shore Philharmonic. The House of Representatives in Massachusetts acknowledged his musical outreach in a detention center in Boston and cultural contribution to the community of Lexington in 2000.
His Boston appearances have been complemented by work at the Nova Scotia ( Canada) Music Festival under the direction of Pierre Boulez and the Round Top ( Texas) Music Festival where he served as assistant to Pascal Verrot. His appearances at colleges and universities include the New England Conservatory, Miami University of Ohio, and the Middlesex Community College Theatre. He was chosen by the Massachusetts Music Educators Association to conduct the Northeastern Senior District Concert. Professional conducting engagements have included the Cedar Falls ( Iowa) Symphony Orchestra and the Green Bay ( Wisconsin) Symphony Orchestra. In June 2005, he was invited as a conducting fellow to the National Arts Center in Ontario, Canada by Pinchas Zukerman and Jorma Panula.
Hisao Watanabe completed both his master's degree and a Performance Certificate in Conducting at the New England Conservatory, studying with Carl St. Clair and Pascal Verrot. His diverse experience includes extensive chamber music experience as a pianist and a B.M. in Piano Performance at the Chicago Musical College of Roosevelt University where his teachers were Ludmilla Lazar and Feliz Ganz. He also has ensemble experience and advanced study in trumpet, including study with Charles Geyer and Tom Crown. He did graduate study in Music Theory with Fred Lerdahl and William Rothstein at the University of Michigan where he was highly successful as a graduate teaching assistant. Born in Tokyo, Japan, Watanabe has been a resident of the United States since 1977.