Garth Newel Welcomes New Pianist And Co-Artistic Director

Warm Springs, VA – It’s an exciting time for Garth Newel Music Center in Hot Springs as it welcomes its new resident pianist and Co-Artistic Director, Misuzu Tanaka. She just graduated from the University of Michigan with a Doctor of Musical Arts and she thought she would pursue teaching at a University. But the opportunity at Garth Newel changed her mind.

“It was basically my dream job” she says. “Chamber music has been a passion of mine for a long time and I think it was always there, it just wasn’t always a priority. I just really feel that this audition process that I went through for Garth Newel for a couple of months that really made me realize this is what I really love to do so, every moment that I played with them was really great and the best time of my life. And I’m really glad they decided to hire me.”

“I remember the first time I went there” she says, “I heard about Garth Newel and I thought how can there be a music center that’s going to survive in the mountains; but I just thought, you know this place is just really beautiful and there’s just no place like Bath County. And I thought this is really somewhere I’d like to be.”

“The other thing I really liked about Garth Newel was how supportive and professional and respectful everyone was at the music center and it was really sort of surprising to meet really nice people who are also really, really good at what they do, because you don’t really see that all the time. It was really touching for me to experience that the first time I went there. They treated me equally and I really appreciated that.”

Garth Newel’s Executive Director, Dick Riley.

“She came last October and none of us had met her” he says. “And immediately one of the musicians, I think it was Tobey Werner, came down and said Oh my goodness, she is special. So we were just on tenterhooks waiting to see how she would enjoy Garth Newel, whether she would enjoy Bath County. But she seemed to have such a good time and such a terrific rapport with our musicians and crucially for us, she loved the area. We feel tremendously honored that she was able to accept our offer; we look forward a future of extraordinary music-making, but also having a new friend and neighbor in Bath County.”

Tanaka’s debut concert in her new role at Garth Newel is Saturday July 2 at 5pm. An optional dinner follows the concert. For tickets and more information contact Garth Newel Music Center at 540-839-5018 or go online to garth newel dot org.

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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