News from the 2019-2020 Academic Year

Dean Robert Cutietta

A message from Dean Cutietta to the USC Thornton community

June 1, 2020

Dear Thornton Community, Our hearts ache for our society after the murder of George Floyd, the deaths of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and the many others we have lost. These tragic events are happening while the Thornton community is still healing from the death of student Victor McElhaney who was murdered in March of last […]


Photo of Jason Issokson holding violin

Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra introduces violinist Jason Issokson in new video

May 31, 2020

The Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra recently introduced violinist and USC Thornton alum Jason Issokson (DMA ’11) as one of the newest members of the orchestra in a video interview and performance. In the video feature, filmed in November of 2019, he discusses how he was first introduced to chamber music, and performs Brahms’ Sonatensatz in […]


Bob Mintzer

Bob Mintzer to release Blue Soul collaboration on Strikezone Records this June

May 23, 2020

Blue Soul, a collaborative album featuring Jazz Studies faculty member Bob Mintzer, is soon to release on June 5 on Strikezone Records. The album is a collaboration with guitarist Dave Stryker, with saxophonist and arranger Mintzer leading the WDR Big Band, a Germany-based ensemble for which he is director and conductor. “Bob is one of […]


Ayoni Thompson

Ayoni Thompson interviewed by V Magazine

May 21, 2020

USC Thornton Popular Music student Ayoni Thompson was interviewed by V Magazine about her music and inspiration. The artist was the “Pick of the Week” in the magazine’s Creativity 01 series highlighting up-and-coming creatives. Thompson discusses how she got her start writing music, artists that have inspired her sound, and her creative process while writing […]


Gabriel Martins with cello

Gabriel Martins wins first prize in two classical strings competitions

May 19, 2020

Cellist and USC Thornton alum Gabriel Martins (BM ’19) has recently won first prize in two classical strings competitions. In February, Martins won first prize in the Senior Division of the 2020 Sphinx Competition, a national competition for Black and Latino classical strings musicians. He was awarded second place in the competition in 2018. As […]


Maahir Shah in studio

Maahir Shah wins Independent Music Award

May 18, 2020

New Music Production graduate Maahir Shah (BM ’20) recently won the Independent Music Award for Best Music Producer in the Dance/Electronica category for his album Electric. Released under his moniker, 5önikk, in the Fall of 2019, Electric is Shah’s first full-length project. Listen to the album on Soundcloud.    


Brian Robert Jones

Brian Robert Jones releases LP with band Human Natural

May 13, 2020

Bassist Brian Robert Jones (BM ’15), an alum of the USC Thornton Popular Music program, has recently released a debut LP, Only Human Natural, with his pop funk duo Human Natural. Jones and his bandmate, Hannah Winkler, began releasing music together in 2018. Euphoria magazine sang the album’s praises, writing, “Every single vocal stem, beat, […]


"320 Festival May 8-10"

New York Times highlights 320 Festival in weekend of live streamed events

May 8, 2020

The New York Times featured the 320 Festival in its roundup of the weekend’s top events to view live online. The festival kicks off today, May 8, for three days of music performances and educational sessions about mental health and the arts. For two semesters, students of USC Thornton’s Music Industry program have been hard […]


Remi Wolf

Remi Wolf releases two new singles to warm reviews

May 7, 2020

Popular Music alum Remi Wolf (BM ’18) recently released two new singles and music videos, “Woo!,” and “Photo ID” on Virgin EMI/Island Records, after releasing her EP You’re A Dog! in October of 2019. In an interview with Wolf, i-D Magazine calls “Woo!” “impossibly fun.” A recent Hypebeast review says “Remi’s vocal range truly shines […]


Lina Bahn

Lina Bahn pens advice to graduating college musicians

May 6, 2020

Lina Bahn, a faculty member in the USC Thornton Strings program, offers advice to musicians graduating from college in a recent online article. Bahn acknowledges that students graduating this semester are likely facing many questions about the future of their field in unprecedented times. Her advice to new graduates is to pull from the creativity […]


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