Founded in 2014, The Fête Concert Series aims to put the “art” back into “party” while educating and entertaining through discussion and musical performance. Concert dates are determined by important anniversaries in the celebrated artist’s life and performances will include a piece arranged in the style of the celebrated artist by one of our composers in residence. The board includes pianist Paul Dab and soprano Annie Smith.
Paul Dab has been a dedicated musician since his grandparents first took him to piano lessons at the age of four. He attended Los Angeles public schools and was fortunate to participate in some of the city’s most vibrant school music programs. In 2011 Paul graduated from Vanderbilt University, where he studied piano with Dr. Craig Nies. During his time there, Paul worked as a staff accompanist, was part of a piano trio that won the Tennessee Music Teachers Association chamber music competition, and received the Gall-Martin Collaborative Arts Scholarship. He has studied at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow and participated in the International Keyboard Institute at Mannes College and the Brevard Music Center in North Carolina. Paul moved to San Francisco in 2012 to study with Dr. Sharon Mann at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
Paul collaborates with singers and instrumentalists in a variety of musical styles and enjoys presenting audiences with a wide range of music. In addition to teaching and coaching private students, Paul is passionate about passing his love of music on to the community. He was a volunteer instructor at the W. O. Smith Community Music School in Nashville, TN and has worked in arts administration and outreach for the Nashville Symphony Orchestra and the Cypress String Quartet. During the winter of 2013-2014 Paul was living artwork in a conceptual art exhibit by Jason Lazarus. He practiced piano in a gallery at the Contemporary Jewish Museum and engaged with visitors about the nature of practice and their reactions to the exhibit. Paul completed his masters degree in May 2014 and works as a private instructor at the San Francisco Community Music Center, a teaching artist for the San Francisco Opera Guild, and a staff accompanist at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
Lyric coloratura soprano and Atlanta native Anne Hepburn Smithis a Bay Area based performer and teacher. Recent operatic roles include Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Nella in Gianni Schicchi, and Pamina in Die Zauberflöte. She performs regularly with Oakland based hip-hop chamber group Ensemble Mik Nawooj. She recently performed at the Shastra Symposium at William Paterson University, presenting a lecture recital with Paul Dab focusing on Western vocal repertoire that has been influenced by music and poetry from India. Annie maintains private voice and piano studio in San Francisco, and a small vocal studio in San Mateo. Visit annehepburnsmith.com for more information.
Composers In Residence:
San Francisco-based composer Emma Logan (b. 1990) strives to write music that is emotionally compelling through the use of gesture, experimentation, and storytelling. Her piece Short Stories for solo guitar received an honorable mention in the 2016 MACRO Composers Competition. Emma’s passion for contemporary music drives her to continue collaborating with fellow composers and performers to bring new music to life. Recent collaborations include a song cycle commissioned by Ensemble for These Times, a new piece for Areon Flutes presented by the Guerrilla Composers Guild, and new music for Georges Méliès’ famous short films. Upcoming projects include a new song cycle commissioned by One Great City and a new work commissioned by flutists Jessie Nucho and Tori Hauk. Emma’s work has been performed around the United States, including Eugene, OR, San Francisco, CA, Chicago IL, Cincinnati, OH, and Syracuse, NY. Emma studied with David Garner at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (MM) and with Andrew Waggoner, Daniel S. Godfrey, and Nicholas Scherzinger at Syracuse University (BM).
Joseph M. Colombo is a New England-born, San Francisco-based post-classical composer and noise maker. He has written music for orchestras, chamber ensembles, electronics, stage, film, installations, and everything in between. His work has a vibrant energy, often exhibiting a strong rhythmic drive, and has been referred to as “a powerful auditory experience” and “a wash of sound and color” (I Care If You Listen).
Joseph has worked with a slew of individual performers and ensembles, including but not limited to the Kronos Quartet, the Orlando Philharmonic, the Mobius Trio, the Living Earth Show, Transient Canvas, Areon Flutes, New Keys Ensemble, Elevate Ensemble, Regina Schaffer, Justin Dougherty, Friction Quartet, Juventas New Musical Ensemble, and more. He is currently working on an a long form visual music project and a new chamber opera.
Joseph is a frequent host of the radio show Music From Other Minds, and can often be encountered as a performer and teacher. He is a founding member of the Fifth Floor Collective and Prodigal Opera Productions, and has studied with Dan Becker, Andy Vores, Jan Swafford, Curtis Hughes, Dalit Warshaw, Dan Crozier, and Susan Lackman.
The work of composer, Eric Choate, has been praised by Examiner as “music to grab the listener’s attention through novelty and hold it through technical discipline.” He has several awards to his name, including First Prize in the SFCM Art Song Composition Competition for his setting of “My Papa’s Waltz,” as well as First Prize in the Vancouver Chamber Choir Composition Competition for his anthem, “Now Cheer Our Hearts.” He has received commissions from the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble, Cantorei, the St. Olaf Orchestra, the St. Olaf Band, and others. Through collaboration with the Guerrilla Composer’s Guild, Eric also recently composed a piece for the International Low Brass Trio. Several of his works have been toured throughout the United States.
Eric’s musical engagements reach beyond composition to the piano and baton. Praised by San Francisco Classical Voice for leading with a “nice, light hand,” Eric has enjoyed conducting numerous Bay Area ensembles. Currently, he acts as Assistant Conductor for the Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra. Recent positions include Assistant Conductor of Choral Ensembles at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and Guest Conductor of San Jose’s Winchester Orchestra. Previously, Eric was the Assistant Conductor of the St. Olaf Cantorei and frequently appeared in front of the St. Olaf Band and St. Olaf Orchestra. Eric also currently serves as Director of Music at Transfiguration Episcopal Church in San Mateo, where he conducts the choir, plays the organ, and composes liturgical music.
Graduating with Departmental Distinction, Eric earned his Bachelor of Arts in Composition from St. Olaf College, where he studied with Timothy Mahr and Justin Merritt. He was awarded a fellowship to study harmony and counterpoint at the European American Musical Alliance in Paris, France; from this, he graduated with Honorable Mentions in Harmony and Solfege. He then went on to earn a Master of Music with David Conte at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.