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  • LAPA
  • Apr. 8, 2021




    Works by high school–aged Composer Fellows to be premiered online

    April 8, 2021


    LOS ANGELES, April 8, 2021 – The Los Angeles Philharmonic today announced the world premiere of new solo instrumental works by the 2020/21 cohort of the Nancy and Barry Sanders Composer Fellowship Program (CFP), which are available to view online here. The class of 20 high school students were invited to write solo pieces for members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, which the musicians then recorded from their homes during the lock down caused by COVID-19.

    The Nancy and Barry Sanders Composer Fellowship Program was founded 14 years ago by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steven Stucky. A one-of-a-kind opportunity for high school–age composers to become a part of the LA Phil’s thriving new music community, the innovative program offers its Fellows a high level of consistent and intensive focus on the process and production of music composition, preparing them for careers in composition and giving them the tools and freedom necessary to shape the future of concert music. Students develop their artistic voice as they grow a robust portfolio of works through an unprecedented level of access to one of the world’s leading orchestras.

    Under the direction of award-winning composer Andrew Norman, this year’s curriculum has been reshaped to accommodate the restrictions and health measures put in place due to the pandemic, with all activities now taking place online. Meeting weekly via Zoom, the Fellows have continued their regular sessions, including working in small groups and hosting discussions. Additionally, the digital format has allowed guest speakers from all over the world to join, including Gustavo Dudamel, Music & Artistic Director of the LA Phil; and composers Ludwig Goransson, Nico Muhly, Hitomi Oba, Nathalie Joachim, Caroline Shaw and Derrick Spiva, among others. CFP alumni who are now spread across the country have also been able to join digitally.

    Additional projects this year include works for string orchestra, percussion quartet, mixed chamber ensembles, and writing and recording solos for themselves on their instrument or voice. They also engaged in a new technology class where they learned about Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs)—notation software and recording and audio-editing software.


    The 20 participants of the 2020/21 Nancy and Barry Sanders Composer Fellowship Program are:

    Fariyan Alam, 18, senior, L.A. County High School for the Arts (LACHSA)

    Jaden Amersi Anselmo, 16, sophomore, Windward School

    Elijah Alexander, 18, senior, LACHSA

    Cole Brown, 18, senior, Marshall Fundamental Secondary School

    Clara Myers, 15, sophomore, Wildwood Middle-Upper School

    Norah Fong, 17, junior, South Torrance High School

    Noah Godard, 17, junior, Moorpark High School

    Willa Fine Hawthorne, 17, junior, Polytechnic School

    David Hernández, 18, senior, John Burroughs High School

    Joey Karz, 18, senior, Brentwood School

    Alexander Hurvitz, 18, senior, LACHSA

    Oliviana Marie, 18, senior, Laurel Springs High School

    Rachel Mugemancuro, 16, junior, Harvard-Westlake

    Mia Ruhman (Sue Tsao Composer Fellow), 18, senior, Palisades Charter High School

    Zola Saadi-Klein, 18, senior, LACHSA

    Sage Shurman, 15, sophomore, Flintridge Preparatory School

    Luke Sterling, 16, junior, LACHSA

    Aidan Vass, 17, senior, Westlake High School

    Chloe Elise Villamajor, 18, senior, The Buckley School

    Sydney Wang, 18, senior, La Cañada High School


    About the LA Phil

    Under the leadership of Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel, the LA Phil offers live performances, media initiatives, and learning programs that inspire and strengthen communities in Los Angeles and beyond. The Los Angeles Philharmonic orchestra is the foundation of the LA Phil’s offerings, which also include a multi-genre, multidisciplinary presenting program and such youth development programs as YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles). Performances are offered on three historic stages—Walt Disney Concert Hall, the Hollywood Bowl, and The Ford—as well as through a variety of media platforms. In all its endeavors, the LA Phil seeks to enrich the lives of individuals and communities through musical, artistic, and learning experiences that resonate in our world today.


  • Contact:

    Sophie Jefferies

    Lisa White