First Oboe Made Out of Kauila Wood Shines with Original Piece for Chamber Music Hawaii Finale


Chamber Music Hawaii will showcase the Hawaiian Oboe and a piece created just for the special instrument for its season finale May 20 at Doris Duke Theatre.
Hawaii Symphony Orchestra & Chamber Music Hawaii Oboist + Hawaii Oboe Legacy Project (HOLP) Director J. Scott Janusch performed on Living808 with the world’s first and only handcrafted oboe made of kauila.

HOLP is an initiative to create the oboe out of kauila, which is a rare and culturally significant wood in Hawaii. 

The kauila wood used to make this instrument is approximately 300 years old and from the island of Kauai. 

The project was envisioned by Scott–principal oboe of the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra and oboist in the Spring Wind Quintet–and it’s been two years in the making.

Dr. Jon Magnussen, Composer and Associate Professor of Music at UH West Oahu, was commissioned to compose the piece specifically to showcase this new instrument in a small chamber version and an orchestral version. 

The work is titled Nā Kau ʻElua | The Two Seasons and the chamber version features solo oboe with string quartet, piano, and Hawaiian and western percussion instruments.  

The concert is Chamber Music Hawaii’s season finale, and it will feature the Hawaiian oboe in a world premiere piece by Dr. Magnussen. 

Janusch is being joined by Tresemble for the program, which also includes Mozart’s Oboe Quartet and Jolivet’s Petite Suite.

To purchase tickets to hear the Hawaiian oboe, visit 

or call the Chamber Music Hawaii Box Office at (808) 489-5038. 

Chamber Music Hawaii is the oldest presenter of local professional chamber musicians in the state. 

Each year, its resident ensembles and musicians bring chamber music to the islands through concerts, collaborations, and education/outreach tours.


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