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  • Hawaii Public Radio (HPR) - "The Art of the Jazz Duet" at HPR’s Atherton Studio

  • Type: Special Event
    Date: Sunday - 6/22/2014
    Time: 7:30 p.m.
    Hawaii Public Radio (HPR)
    Atherton Performing Arts Studio
    738 Kaheka Street
    Honolulu, HI 96814

    View Map

"The Art of the Jazz Duet" at HPR's Atherton Studio on June 22nd

A piano and vibes 20th anniversary reunion concert with Francesco Crosara and Noel Okimoto

Hawaii Public Radio's intimate Atherton Performing Arts Studio is the ideal setting for the magical piano and vibraphone jazz duet of Francesco Crosara and Noel Okimoto. In their first reunion concert since their acclaimed appearance at the Atherton in 1994, "The Art of the Jazz Duet" on June 22 will include choice jazz standards from a romantic repertoire, blues interpretations, extemporaneous improvisations, plus the world premiere of Crosara's latest original work, the "Harmony Suite," which has been composed especially for this event and tailored to reflect the unique sensibilities of each player.

In a slight departure from regular Atherton Season concert schedules, "The Art of the Duet" takes place on a Sunday (June 22) at 6:00 p.m. Reservations may be made online at or by calling the station (955-8821) during business hours. Tickets are $30 general, $25 for HPR members, and $15 for students with ID. The Atherton Studio is located at Hawaii Public Radio, 738 Kaheka Street.

Francesco Crosara, a former Honolulu resident, is currently based in Southern California. He has performed at festivals and venues across the United States, Hawaiʻi, Canada, Mexico, and throughout Europe. Born and raised in Italy, Francesco studied classical composition at the Conservatory of Santa Cecilia in Rome. In 1981, he moved to Los Angeles where he was the pianist for the USC Jazz Band and performed with Lionel Hampton and Freddie Hubbard. Through the years he has also performed with Richie Cole, Von Freeman, Bruce Forman, Roy Hargrove, John Heard, Don Menza, Barbara Morrison, Bobby Shew, and Ira Sullivan. Hawaiʻi jazz fans will remember him for his trio work and participation in Gabe Baltazar's band in the early 90s.

Francesco's discography includes five albums featuring Chicago tenor sax legend Von Freeman, Lilian Terry on vocals, and musicians from the US, Brazil, Hawaiʻi, and Egypt. The jazz magazine Downbeat awarded a rating of "4 stars" to his CD Colors in 2000. Noel Okimoto also appeared playing drums on the CD in memorable interpretations of "Someday My Prince Will Come" and Francesco's own "Suite Venus."

Noel Okimoto was born and raised in Honolulu, and has been playing professionally since the age of ten. Noel's primary instrument is the drum set, but he is also an accomplished orchestral percussionist, vibraphonist, composer, and clinician. He received his bachelor's degree in Percussion from the University of Hawaiʻi. Noel has played in Hawaiʻi, the mainland USA, and internationally with Freddie Hubbard, The Woody Herman Orchestra, Stan Getz, Bobby Hutcherson, Richie Cole, Bill Watrous, Ernie Watts, Bud Shank, Barney Kessel, Lew Tabackin, Sadao Watanabe, Wynton Marsalis, Ronnie Cuber, Makoto Ozone, Jeff Richman, Larry Coryell, Nestor Torres, Gene Harris, Take 6, David Benoit, Henry Mancini, Nelson Riddle, Steve Allen, Natalie Cole, Kenny Loggins, Michael McDonald, Bob Hope, Rosemary Clooney, Patti Page, Dionne Warwick, and Jake Shimabukuro, among others. He was also a member of the Gabe Baltazar Group for five years. He is also the percussion section leader of the historic Royal Hawaiian Band.

Okimoto recorded an award-winning jazz CD in 2004 entitled ʻOhana, which received a 4-star review in Downbeat magazine and positive reviews in other national and international publications.

About HPR's Atherton Performing Arts Studio

The Atherton Studio seats 75 people and is home to a magnificent Bösendorfer concert grand piano. The Studio is available for rent for musical performances, community group meetings, and lectures. It is located in the HPR office and studio complex at 738 Kaheka Street, across from the Honolulu Don Quijote. Metered street parking is available, as are paid lots at the First Hawaiian Bank (Kapi‘olani branch) and in the Pan Am building.

About Hawaii Public Radio

HPR is a private, non-profit organization which broadcasts classical, jazz, and international music; and in-depth news and informational programming from National Public Radio, American Public Media, Public Radio International, and other local, national, and international program sources, as well as programs produced by Hawaii Public Radio. In October 2013, Charity Navigator, the premier charity evaluator, awarded HPR its second consecutive four-star rating for exceptional fiscal management and commitment to accountability and transparency.

HPR's mission is to serve the entire population of the state of Hawai‘i with two excellent program streams. HPR-1, the news magazine and fine arts stream, can currently be heard on O‘ahu and Kaua‘i (KHPR 88.1 FM and 88.5 FM); Maui, Moloka‘i, Lana‘i, and West Hawai‘i (KKUA 90.7 FM); and East Hawai‘i (KANO 91.1 FM (Hilo) and 94.7 FM (Waimea)). HPR-2, the news, local talk, and music stream, is found on Maui, Moloka‘i, Lana‘i (KIPM 89.7 FM and KIPH 88.3 FM (Hana)); West Hawai‘i (KIPM 89.7 FM and KHPH 88.7 FM); O‘ahu and Kaua‘i (KIPO 89.3 FM; KIPL 89.9 FM)

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