Revamped Cal Lutheran ensembles debut
Accomplished cellist to conduct Founders Day Concert
Yoshika Masuda
Yoshika Masuda

Revamped ensembles and a new conductor will make their debut at California Lutheran University’s annual Founders Day Concert.

The concert will begin 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28, in Samuelson Chapel on the Thousand Oaks campus.

The 20-member University String Symphony, which includes members of the former University Symphony, will perform selections from “Capriol Suite” by Peter Warlock, Theme and Variations by Aleksandr Glazunov and Mozart’s Divertimento for Strings in F major under the direction of Yoshika Masuda. The accomplished musician also began giving cello lessons at Cal Lutheran this fall.

The University Wind Ensemble will close the concert with an eclectic mix of traditional favorites and exciting contemporary works. The ensemble became an all-student group this fall. It continues under the direction of assistant professor of music Michael Hart, the director of bands at Cal Lutheran.

Masuda has performed as a cellist at the Solitär at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, the Sydney Opera House, the Dai-ichi Seimei Hall in Tokyo and the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. A keen advocate of contemporary music, he presented the world premieres of works by Michael Cutting, Xander Rodzinski and Bent Sørensen.

The cellist took first place in the 40th Midland-Odessa National Young Artist Competition in Texas, the 25th Australian Concerto & Vocal Competition and the 11th All-Japan Viva Hall Cello Competition. He received the prestigious Yamaha Music Foundation of Europe String Award in 2010.

Masuda is a founding member of the cello quintet SAKURA, whose performances were recently described by the Los Angeles Times as “brilliant” and “superb.”

Born in Kobe, Japan, Masuda moved to Australia after the 1995 earthquake destroyed his family’s house. He began playing the cello at the age of 5 and studied at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. He earned a bachelor’s degree in music with first-class honors and a master’s degree in music with distinction from the Royal Northern College of Music in England. He holds a doctorate in musical arts from the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, where he studied with the legendary cellist Ralph Kirshbaum.

The chapel is located at 165 Chapel Lane. Additional parking is available in the lots at the corner of Olsen Road and Mountclef Boulevard.

Donations will be accepted. For more information, call the Music Department at 805-493-3306 or visit