Val Underwood is Artistic Director of Hawaii Performing Arts Festival. He is distinctive for his equal skill as a pianist (the LA Times described his playing as “exquisite”) and as a voice teacher. He has trained a number of successful concert pianists, as well as singers who appear with companies world-wide. As a pianist he has performed in concert with principle players of the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics and with artists such as Mitchell Lurie, Eudice Shapiro, Glenn Dicterow, Ofra Harnoy, Gary Gray, Jeannine Altmeyer, Jennifer McGregor, Ricky Ian Gordon and many others. His film and television performances include the Masterpiece production of Willa Cather’s The Song of the Lark. After directing programs in The Strawberry Creek Festival and The Adriatic Chamber Music Festival, he co-founded Hawaii Performing Arts Festival in 2004 with his close friend, Genette Freeman. Hawaii Performing Arts Festival currently hosts 84 students from all over the world for it’s over one month program each July, presenting more than 25 concerts and events for the Big Island public and it’s ever growing audience of visitors. His teaching career has taken him regularly to Los Angeles, New York and London.