YOUTH SYMPHONY CONDUCTORS
Ken Hakoda is enjoying his 10th season as music director and conductor of the Salina Symphony. During his tenure as music director, the Symphony has increased the number of concerts from four to seven with tremendous growth in ticket sales, resulting in an average concert attendance of 1,000. The Salina Symphony has also developed partnerships with Kansas Wesleyan University, the Wichita Grand Opera and the Stiefel Theatre to bring live opera performances to North Central Kansas. In addition, the Youth Symphony Program has flourished under his leadership, growing from one orchestra into a comprehensive educational program involving more than 170 students from grade school through high school.
In addition to his work with the Symphony, Hakoda serves as associate professor of music at Kansas Wesleyan University, where he teaches orchestra, choir, music education and music theory classes. He is founder of the KWU Chamber Orchestra and founder/producer of the annual opera production. He also directs choir at St. John’s Lutheran Church and regularly serves as music director at the Salina Community Theatre.
A native of Japan, Hakoda has lived in the United States since 1989. He earned master of music degrees in instrumental conducting and theory/composition from Wichita State University and bachelor’s degrees in theory/composition and music education from St. Olaf College. He is currently a doctoral candidate at Teachers College, Columbia University.
Hakoda is also known for his talent as a composer with over 20 works to his credit. He has won a number of awards and honors as a composer, including the 1998 Claude T. Smith Phi Beta Mu Composition Contest, the 1996 MMEA Collegiate Composition Contest and a Departmental Distinction at St. Olaf College. Hakoda also received the 2003 Outstanding Young Band Director Award from Kansas Bandmasters Association.
Henry Littich is currently in his 17th year as an orchestra/strings teacher and 5th year as Director of Orchestras for Smoky Valley Public Schools, where he teaches at Smoky Valley High School, Smoky Valley Middle School and Soderstrom and Elementary School.
Since Littich’s arrival in Lindsborg, the Smoky Valley High School String and Symphony Orchestras have earned first division superior ratings at the KSHSAA Large Ensemble Music Contest, and the Lindsborg and Marquette Middle School Orchestras have earned first division superior ratings at the Hays City Music Festival. In addition to outstanding ensemble performances, Littich’s students have earned individual accolades, earning seats in the State and District Honor Orchestras as well as high ratings at State and District Solo and Small Ensemble Music Contests.
Prior to coming to Lindsborg, Littich taught orchestra in Odessa, Texas. He holds a bachelor of music education degree from Kansas State University, where he studied violin with Dr. Cora Cooper. In addition to his work in the Smoky Valley school district, Littich plays violin with the Salina Symphony.
Lindsay Modin is currently in her 11th year teaching orchestra, and 7th year as conductor of the Preparatory Orchestra, after helping to establish the ensemble in 2007. She maintains successful orchestra programs at Lakewood Middle School as well as Heusner and Sunset Elementary Schools in Salina. Modin is also instructor of oboe at Kansas Wesleyan University and maintains a private oboe studio. She plays principal oboe with the Salina Symphony, where she served on the Board of Directors as the musicians’ representative for six years.
Modin was selected as a member of the 2002 National Wind Ensemble (NY), where she performed in Carnegie Hall. She was also the winner of the Nebraska Music Teachers Association Collegiate Artist Woodwinds Competition in 2001. In 2009-2010, Modin was awarded “Young Teacher of the Year” by the Kansas chapter of ASTA. Most recently, her Lakewood Tri-M International Music Honor Society received the 2012-2013 National Jr. Chapter of the Year Award.
Modin has been a guest clinician at String Fling at KSU, and is on faculty at High Plains Music Camp at FHSU.
Modin is a member of the Music Educators National Conference, Kansas Music Educators Association, American String Teachers Association (ASTA), International and Midwest Double Reed Societies and Pi Kappa Lambda (a national music honor society). Modin holds a M.M. from Kansas State University (2009) and B.M.E. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (2003).