Strings News from the 2017-2018 Academic Year

Thornton alumni form the Delirium Musicum Chamber Orchestra

April 5, 2018

Violinist and USC Thornton alumnus Etienne Gara has recently teamed with a number of Thornton alumni to form the Delirium Musicum Chamber Orchestra, a conductorless ensemble focused on music from the Baroque through the contemporary. The group’s roster includes violinists Mishkar Núñez-Fredell (MM ’09, DMA ’17), Yu-Eun Kim (GCRT ’17), and Sun Jung Lee (DMA […]


Michael Tree, violist of the Guarneri Quartet, dies at 84

April 3, 2018

Violist Michael Tree, a founding member of the Guarneri Quartet, died on March 30 in New York City at the age of 84. The acclaimed musician joined the USC Thornton Strings faculty in the fall of 2014 and taught at the school for three semesters. Initially trained as a violinist, it has been said that […]


Philip Marten appointed Assistant Concertmaster in Cincinnati

March 29, 2018

Violinist Philip Marten, a former student of USC Thornton Strings faculty member Glenn Dicterow, has been appointed Assistant Concertmaster of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Marten currently performs as a first violin with the Kansas City Symphony and previously served as concertmaster of the American Youth Symphony.


Faculty and student chamber performance of Franck Piano Quintet well received

March 27, 2018

David J. Brown of LA Opus recently reviewed a chamber music performance of César Franck’s Piano Quintet in F minor M.7 by USC Thornton faculty members Glenn Dicterow (first violin), Bernadene Blaha (piano), and Karen Dreyfus (violin), with students Benjamin Lash (cello) and Mann-Wen Lo (violin). The performance was part of the Second Sundays series […]


Francisco Fullana releases debut album

March 14, 2018

Violinist and USC Thornton alumnus Francisco Fullana (GCRT ’15) has released a debut album, “Through the Lens of Time,” recorded with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Carlos Izcaray. The album is centered on Max Richter’s contemporary reworking of Vivaldi’s iconic Four Seasons and also includes works by Schnittke, Salvador Brotons, […]


Gabriel Martins wins second place at the Sphinx Competition

February 6, 2018

Gabriel Martins, a junior cellist at USC Thornton, earned a prize for the second year in a row at the Sphinx Competition, a national event for Black and Latino classical string players. Martins took second place, earning a $20,000 award, but was the top cellist. Violinist Rubén Rengel won the Senior Division. Last year, Thornton […]


Three USC Thornton cellists save the day at Walt Disney Concert Hall

January 22, 2018

On Friday, January 19th, three USC Thornton cellists took to the stage of Walt Disney Concert Hall for a daring musical rescue mission, of sorts. When Los Angeles Philharmonic soloist Robert deMaine was unable to perform the U.S. premiere of Bernd Alois Zimmermann’s daunting modernist Cello Concerto at the last minute, conductor Susanna Mälkki invited […]


Applications now open for the Los Angeles Orchestra Fellowship

December 13, 2017

close The USC Thornton School of Music, Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (ICYOLA) and Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra (LACO) have teamed up to launch a post-graduate fellowship program for musicians from underrepresented communities on the verge of launching careers in orchestral performance. The West Coast’s first comprehensive orchestral fellowship program for top-tier string […]


Lina Bahn offers auditioning advice on The Violin Channel

December 6, 2017

The Violin Channel recently turned to USC Thornton Strings faculty member Lina Bahn for its “Ask the Pros” series on the topic of auditioning for music schools. In addition to offering advice about preparation, Bahn pointed to the shortcomings of the audition process as opportunities to grow and develop as a musician. Her tips for […]


Violin alumni win orchestral positions

November 30, 2017

Two USC Thornton Strings alumni have recently won orchestral positions. Helen Kim (BM ’09) was appointed principal 2nd violin of the San Francisco Symphony in the spring of 2017. And Michelle Black (BM ’11) won a first violin position with the Indianapolis Symphony in May. Both were students of faculty member Margaret Batjer, who serves […]


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