Skip to page content

A unique offering among American orchestras, the Nancy and Barry Sanders Composer Fellowship Program is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for young composers to become a part of the LA Phil's thriving new music community. The innovative, multi-year program offers students a high level of consistent and intensive focus on the process and production of music composition, giving them the tools and freedom necessary to shape the future of concert music.

Fellows are guided through the creative process from start to finish by internationally acclaimed composer and Program Director Andrew Norman. Students work with LA Phil musicians and guest artists in frequent reading sessions; hear their pieces performed by the LA Phil, chamber groups, and other orchestras; attend more than 20 concerts at Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Hollywood Bowl each year; and engage with many of the world’s greatest living composers.

2019-2020 Applications now open!

Apply Now

Program Highlights


  • Study with faculty Andrew Norman, Director; Sarah Gibson, Lead Teaching Artist; and Thomas Kotcheff, Teaching Artist

  • Tickets to more than 20 LA Phil concerts each year, including the Green Umbrella series

  • Opportunities to compose works for readings and performances for ensembles such as the LA Phil, the Lyris Quartet, Calder Quartet, American Youth Symphony, and wild Up

  • Meetings with the great composers of our time. Past visits have included John Corigliano, John Adams, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Kaija Saariaho, Michael Giacchino, Magnus Lindberg, and many others.

  • Access to LA Phil rehearsals

  • Access to composition software and other resources

  • A supportive community of peers and mentors from diverse backgrounds

  • Fellows build a rich portfolio of professionally recorded works performed by members of the LA Phil and other professional musicians

  • No fee for participation; all costs are underwritten by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association.

2019-2020 Program Information


Program Commitment

The Fellow Year runs from September to early June, with about four events per month, including Saturday composition sessions, community events and LA Phil concerts. You must be available for and take part in all scheduled program dates.


Open to students in Southern California from all backgrounds, who will be in grades 9-12 beginning fall 2019. Applicants should have some composition experience or the desire to pursue compositional training with dedication; prior composition lessons are not required.



Application Requirements

  • Biographical information

  • Educational background

  • Letter of recommendation

  • Short essays

  • Two composition samples, represented by:

    • Score (PDF only) – required

    • Audio or video recording (MP3, M4A, WAV, AIFF, MP4, AVI, MIDI) – optional, but encouraged

Learn more about eligibility and application requirements here, or email

Important Dates

April 1, 2019

Applications open 

June 2, 2019

Applications close

June 28, 2019

Admissions decisions released

Early September

2019-2020 program begins


Apply Now