Winds and Percussion


The USC Thornton Winds and Percussion faculty consists of artists and teachers of national and international regard, and provides a level of artistic and technical development virtually unmatched in the United States. Emphasis on all aspects of performance, combined with broad musical preparation, produces graduates who are concert artists, recording artists for major motion picture and television studios, performers in major orchestras and ensembles, and members of the faculties of music schools throughout the world.

Undergraduate and graduate degrees, as well as non-degree certificates, are offered in: flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone, French horn, trumpet, trombone, tuba, and percussion.

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Upcoming events

  • USC Thornton Symphony: Tchaikovsky's Fourth

    Carl St.Clair leads the USC Thornton Symphony in a theatrical and musical presentation of Tchaikovsky’s impassioned Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36. The emotional urgency of Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36, is said to reflect the composer's struggles with health issues, a failed marriage, blackmail, his brother’s criminal activities, money problems, closeted homosexuality, and vicious rumors. In this performance, actors will bring Tchaikovsky's melodrama to vivid life with readings from his correspondences and program notes as the music unfolds. Presented by USC Visions and Voices; the Arts & Humanities Initiative.

    Bovard Auditorium (ADM)

  • USC Thornton Symphony: Dance as Music

    Drawing inspiration from dance, Sharon Lavery conducts the USC Thornton Symphony in two works originally conceived as ballet: Stravinsky's “Petrushka“ and Ravel's “Boléro.”

    Bovard Auditorium (ADM)

  • Faculty Recital: Antoinette Perry, Michele Zukovsky, James Walker & Ben Hong

    Pianist Antoinette Perry will be joined by faculty members Michele Zukovsky, clarinet, James Walker, flute, and Ben Hong, cello, in a wide-ranging chamber music recital. The program will include Beethoven's Bagatelles, Op. 119 for piano; Mieczyslaw Weinberg's Clarinet Sonata, Op. 28; Jon Kimura Parker's "Pan Dreams" for flute and piano; and Brahms' Clarinet Trio, Op. 114.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Thornton Edge

    Donald Crockett leads the Thornton Edge new music ensemble in a program of contemporary works by distinguished British and American composers. The performance will feature Harrison Birtwistle's “Carmen Arcadiae Mechanicae Perpetuum” and “Breakfast Rhythms” by Joan Tower.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Baroque Sinfonia: In stile moderno

    Rotem Gilbert leads the USC Thornton Baroque Sinfonia in a program of virtuosic music from seventeenth-century Italy. The concert will feature virtuosic Italian music by Claudio Monteverdi, Luzzasco Luzzaschi, Barbara Strozzi, Luca Marenzio and Dario Castello, as well as a fiery Vivaldi bassoon concerto performed by Leah Kohn.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • USC Thornton Symphony: New Music for Orchestra

    Donald Crockett, chair of the Composition program, leads the USC Thornton Symphony in this annual concert featuring original works by student composers. Over the past 25 years, the New Music for Orchestra (NMO) event has premiered more than 125 compositions, often leading to professional commissions and international recognition.

    Bovard Auditorium (ADM)

  • Percussion Ensemble

    Joseph Pereira, Thornton faculty member and principal timpanist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, leads the Percussion Ensemble in a wide-ranging program.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • USC Thornton Wind Ensemble: Songs & Dances

    H. Robert Reynolds and Sharon Lavery lead the Wind Ensemble in a program of songs and dances, with guest pianist Kevin Fitz-Gerald. The concert opens with Roberto Sierra's “Tumbao,” followed by Ernst von Dohnanyi's “Variations on a Nursery Song,” featuring guest pianist and USC Thornton faculty member, Kevin Fitz-Gerald. The second half of the program will include Leslie Bassett's “Lullaby for Kirsten,” Donald Grantham's “Phantasticke Spirites,” and “Five American and Greek Dances” by Robert Russell Bennett & Nikos Skalkottas.

    Bovard Auditorium (ADM)

  • Thornton Edge

    Donald Crockett leads the Thornton Edge new music ensemble in a program of contemporary works by distinguished British and American composers. The performance will feature Harrison Birtwistle's “Carmen Arcadiae Mechanicae Perpetuum” and “Breakfast Rhythms” by Joan Tower.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Composition Showcase

    The Composition department presents two concerts featuring new solo, chamber and vocal works by student composers. The celebrated program has included Pulitzer Prize finalists and major award winners among its recent alumni. The first program will take place at 3:00 PM and the second at 7:00 PM

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • USC Collegium Workshop: The Songbook of Anna of Cologne

    Adam Gilbert leads the Collegium Workshop in “The Songbook of Anna of Cologne,” a testimonial to the spiritual life of the German Rhineland in the Late Middle Ages. The program features German songs of devotion collected by Anna of Cologne, a follower of the “Modern Devotion” religious movement, around 1500 AD.

    United University Church (UUC)

  • Winter Gala: Brightest and Best – A Scholarship Fundraiser

    Celebrate the holidays in elegant style with the annual Brightest & Best winter gala, a scholarship fundraiser that provides substantial support for USC Thornton students. The event will feature 250 singers and instrumentalists ringing in the season with carols and songs in an evening of pageantry for the entire community to enjoy.

    Bovard Auditorium (ADM)

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    Thornton alumni receive orchestral and academic appointments

    June 22, 2016

    Four talented USC Thornton alumni have recently been selected for distinguished orchestral and academic positions throughout the region. Joe Morris (’12, clarinet) won principal clarinet in the Pacific Symphony, where he will performer under the direction of Carl St.Clair, who also serves as Artistic Leader and Principal Conductor of the… read more

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