Guest Artist on the program will be lifelong Walnut Creek resident Robert Hamaker, performing, James Curnow’s Concerto for Percussion. Robert attended Los Medanos College and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Performance from California State University, Hayward. His principal teachers were Jack Van Geem (Former Principal Percussionist with San Francisco Symphony) and Jerry Neff (former Principal of Oakland Symphony). He has also studied jazz drumming for many years With Chuck Brown a well know and highly acclaimed teacher. He teaches private students at his studios in Walnut Creek, House of Woodwinds in San Ramon, and Fiat Music in Pinole.
He is currently Principal Percussionist for Vallejo Symphony Orchestra, The Golden Gate Park Band, and Principal Percussionist, Personnel, and Stage Manager for Diablo Symphony Orchestra. He stays active playing with Pacific Sticks Percussion Ensemble and also plays with many other Symphonies, Bands, and Theater groups around the Bay Area and Walnut Creek such as Diablo Light Opera & Contra Costa Musical Theater and the Walnut Creek Concert Band. Most recently He has been composing and producing his own music which can be found on ITunes and Amazon and on his webpage at islandjourneycd.com.
The program will include compositions written for the Walnut Creek Concert Band and the City of Walnut Creek, including Jim Territo’s Civic Pride March, composed in 2001 with support from a Civic Pride Grant by the City of Walnut Creek, and Keith Gates’ Concert Overture with support from the Diablo Regional Arts Association. A new work commissioned by the Walnut Creek Band for the City of Walnut Creek will premiere at this performance. The composer, Rosalie Burrell is an area native from Moraga, a graduate from the Manhattan School of Music and currently living in New York as a freelance composer. Rosalie is a former student member of the Walnut Creek Concert Band. Continuing the musical celebration the band will perform Dmitri Shostakovich’s Festive Overture and the wind band transcription of Carmina Burana. The band is under the direction of Harvey Benstein with assistant conductor, Johnny Johnson.
Tickets are available through the Lesher Arts Center Box Office: or www.lesherARTScenter.org. Ticket prices $17.00 adult, $14.00 student/senior; special group rates are available.
Harvey Benstein begins his 16th season as Music Director and Conductor of the Walnut Creek Concert Band.