Ralph Kirshbaum

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland to award Ralph Kirshbaum with honorary degree

May 2, 2016

Cellist Ralph Kirshbaum, chair of the USC Thornton Strings department and Gregor Piatigorsky Chair in Violoncello, will receive an Honorary Degree from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS), in recognition of his contributions to the arts. In its announcement of the award, the Conservatoire noted that Kirshbaum “is indisputably one of the most significant artists […]


University of Pittsburgh to build museum honoring Marilyn Horne

April 28, 2016

The University of Pittsburgh’s Board of Trustees has approved the creation of a museum and exhibit center honoring opera legend and USC Thornton alumna Marilyn Horne. The mezzo-soprano was a recipient of the 1992 National Medal of Arts and the 1995 Kennedy Center Honors. She has also won four GRAMMY Awards for Best Opera Recording. […]


Keenan Reesor takes teaching position with Southern Virginia University

April 28, 2016

Pianist and USC Thornton Musicology PhD candidate Keenan Reesor (MM ’10, piano performance) has accepted a tenure track position as Assistant Professor of Music at Southern Virginia University, where he will begin teaching music history and piano in the fall. Reesor is a laureate of the Wideman and Virginia Waring International Piano Competitions and a […]


Student Jacob Broussard wins Mays Undergraduate Fellowship

April 27, 2016

USC Thornton Choral & Sacred Music undergraduate Jacob Broussard (BA ’18, choral music) is the recipient of a Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship. The program is the centerpiece of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s effort to increase diversity in the faculties of colleges and universities by assisting promising undergraduates in their academic endeavors. The fellowship identifies […]


Melissa Manchester premieres new musical in Houston

April 26, 2016

Musician, songwriter, and USC Thornton Popular Music faculty member Melissa Manchester recently premiered a new musical, The Sweet Potato Queens, at Houston’s Theatre Under the Stars (TUTS) Underground. Based on the well known book series by Jill Conner Browne, the musical tells the story of a woman learning to live on her own terms. The […]

James Horner

Houston Symphony premieres concerto by late composer, alumnus James Horner

April 25, 2016

The work of the late film composer and USC Thornton alumnus James Horner (BM ’74, composition) was honored by the Houston Symphony earlier this month. The Symphony, under conductor Michael Francis, presented the premiere of Horner’s last completed concert work, which was performed by the orchestra and four French horn soloists, two of whom were […]

Paul Young

Paul Young chats with APM’s “Marketplace”

April 22, 2016

Paul Young, director of the USC Thornton Music Industry Minors Program, was interviewed for American Public Media’s nationally-syndicated radio show, Marketplace, in a discussion about the long-term financial viability of the music publishing industry. Young explained that ownership of song copyrights can help keep publishers afloat in the midst of an overall music industry downturn. […]


Violinist, faculty member Martin Chalifour receives strong reviews for LA Phil performance

April 21, 2016

Violinist and USC Thornton Strings faculty member Martin Chalifour performed as the Concertmaster for the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s March 31st “From Bach to Schubert” performance and received warm reviews from the Los Angeles Times. Chalifour was featured alongside violinist Nathan Cole during the Bach Concerto for Two Violins and a brief Sinfonia in D and […]

Brian Asawa

Remembering Brian Asawa

April 20, 2016

Brian Asawa, a celebrated countertenor and non-degreed alumnus, died on April 18. He was 49. Asawa’s international career was studded with “firsts” — he was the first countertenor to be named Grand Prize Winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, win Seattle Opera’s Artist of the Year Award, earn the Adler Fellowship at the […]


Jeffrey & Todd Brabec quoted on the economics of “Hamilton”

April 19, 2016

Jeffrey Brabec and Todd Brabec, faculty members in the USC Thornton Music Industry program, were quoted in the New York Post about the landmark success of Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Pulitzer Prize-winning hip hop musical. The pair, widely regarded as leading experts in the economics of Broadway productions, discussed how the tongue-in-cheek story of the first […]

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