Conductor Haas brings diverse interests to Tacoma Symphony tryout

Posted on: April 29, 2013

In Monday’s (4/29) News Tribune (Tacoma, Washington), Rosemary Ponnekanti writes, “At first glance, Paul Haas—the second of four candidates for the Tacoma Symphony’s music director position, in town this week for his audition concert at the Pantages—seems like a bundle of contradictions: A New Yorker who loves hiking and nature. A composer and multimedia innovator who lists Brahms’ 4th symphony—the main work on Saturday’s TSO program—as one of his all-time favorites. A conductor who’s willing to play both cutting-edge music (like a new work by Tacoma-born Alexandra Bryant this Saturday) and the local football team’s theme song. But it turns out that Haas, 42, who’ll begin rehearsing with the orchestra Tuesday, has more in common with Tacoma than you might think. … Currently the music director of the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas, he’s also the founding director of Sympho, a New York-based ensemble pushing new ways to present classical music, from multimedia to innovative venues. A Yale/Juilliard graduate, he was awarded the ASCAP-League of American Orchestras Leonard Bernstein award for his work with the New York Youth Symphony, and has guest-conducted around the country.” Says Haas, “The goal has to be to find out what makes Tacoma and surrounds tick, what’s exciting to those audiences. That requires time. After being there, after talking with people, I would want to program something that is unique, that’s real, a niche that nobody else is doing.”

Posted April 29, 2013