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Mechling is named director of symphony


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POSTED: Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Honolulu Symphony has a new executive director. Majken Mechling joins the historic organization after a recent round of administrative restructuring.

“;The continuation of symphony programs — and the mission of the organization to enrich the lives of all of Hawaii's residents with music — has personally inspired me to lead the organization as it embarks on a new era of financial stability and artistic prominence,”; Mechling said yesterday in a statement.

Mechling was previously executive director of the American Diabetes Association Hawaii; she has also served as executive director of the Hawaii Chapter of the Juvenile Research Association International and as chief executive officer of the Big Island Substance Abuse Council.

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The biggest challenge to the symphony's survival in recent years has been bridging the gap between income from ticket sales and the actual cost of paying musicians, staff and other operating expenses. Peter Shaindlin, chairman of the Honolulu Symphony Society board of directors, described Mechling's fundraising skills as “;of the highest pedigree.”;

“;As such, she is well suited and prepared to bring this institution to new heights of artistic and operational excellence,”; Shaindlin said. He also praised her management style and “;respect for our local culture.”;

Concertgoers will have the opportunity to meet Mechling when maestro Andreas Delfs and the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra present Edgar Meyer's “;The Melody of Rhythm — Triple Concerto for Banjo, Double Bass and Tabla”; at 8 p.m. Saturday and 4 p.m. Sunday in the Blaisdell Concert Hall.