Meet Paul Piazza, BCSO’s 2nd of 4 Guest Conductors This Season!
We introduce Paul Piazza, BCSO’s 2nd of 4 guest conductors for our 70th Beach Cities Symphony Orchestra season, as we continue our musical director search since Maestro Barry Brisk’s retirement last year following 25 successful years at the helm.
Paul Piazza utilizes his diverse array of experiences as a professional conductor, trumpeter, vocalist, and music educator to foster connections between audiences, orchestras, and the community-at-large, making meaningful artistic experiences available to all. Mr. Piazza currently holds the positions of Music Director with the Westlake Village Symphony and Assistant Conductor with the Riverside Philharmonic, and he has shared the stage with some of the world’s greatest musical artists, including conductor Michael Tilson Thomas, pianist Jeremy Denk, and soprano Laura Aiken. Mr. Piazza is also the co-founder of the modern music collective Vitus Ensemble, producing a well-received performance of Arnold Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire and Byron Adams’ Serenade for Nine Instruments in July 2019, and he will be leading an additional program as the trumpeter in Stravinsky’s L’Histoire du Soldat (to be performed without conductor) in February 2020. He has conducted orchestras in the United States & Europe, was selected as a finalist in the 2014 National Trumpet Competition Ensemble Division, and recently participated in a highly selective conducting masterclass with world-renowned conducting pedagogue Neil Varon in Rochester, New York. Highlights of Mr. Piazza’s conducting engagements this season include a West Coast Première of David Fick’s Hanukkah Symphony with the Riverside Philharmonic, and a concert by the Westlake Village Symphony featuring the symphonic music of Amy Beach, Fanny Mendelssohn, and Hildegard von Bingen.
As a music educator, Mr. Piazza has taught for highly acclaimed music programs such as Idyllwild Arts and the Grammy-Prize winning Diamond Bar High School music program, delivered lectures on music appreciation and aesthetics for Los Angeles Pierce College’s Encore program, and served as Artistic Director of the Esperanza Azteca Youth Orchestra for underprivileged youth in the L.A. area. A passionate advocate of bringing great music making to all levels of audiences and students in their own communities, he helped found the New Horizons Music learning program in Miami, Florida, coordinates the popular Music Van program for the New West Symphony throughout Ventura County, and is currently developing the Westlake Village Symphony’s very first educational concert series for young people and families throughout the Conejo Valley.
When not musically engaged, Mr. Piazza frequently shares his love of Roman-Greco & American history with varyingly tolerant friends and family, and his skills as an amateur gourmet chef with decidedly more enthusiastic audiences. We hope you will join us Friday night, January 31, 2020 at 7:15pm for Maestro Piazza’s pre-concert lecture immediately followed by the Beach Cities Symphony Orchestra concert at 8pm, Marsee Auditorium, El Camino College in Torrance, CA.