Winds and Percussion News from the 2020-2021 Academic Year

James Babor playing snare in tuxedo

James Babor to lead clinic at Percussive Arts Society Convention

November 11, 2020

James Babor, USC Thornton faculty and member of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, will lead a clinic on snare drum technique at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC) on Saturday, Nov. 14 at 3:30 pm. PASIC is one of the largest drum and percussion events in the world, featuring concerts, clinics, panels and presentations given […]


Malik Taylor plays the french horn in a plaza in downtown LA

Los Angeles Orchestra Fellow Malik Taylor featured on Spectrum News 1

October 7, 2020

Los Angeles Orchestra Fellow Malik Taylor, one of the four Fellows accepted into the second cohort of the Los Angeles Orchestra Fellowship, was recently featured in a Spectrum News 1 segment about the program. In the segment, Taylor appears with two of his earliest mentors to share his musical journey that led him to the […]


Vimbayi Kaziboni pictured wearing glasses and white shirt

Vimbayi Kaziboni appointed Artistic Advisor of Boston Lyric Opera

September 17, 2020

USC Thornton alum Vimbayi Kaziboni (BM ‘10) has been appointed to the newly created position of Artistic Advisor for the Boston Lyric Opera (BLO). In the position, Kaziboni will take a curatorial and leadership role in BLO, telling the Boston Globe that his goal is “to tell new stories and unheard stories.” One of the […]


Andrew Harrison holding saxophone on brick background

Andrew Harrison to launch new online concert series

September 1, 2020

USC Thornton alum and saxophonist Andrew Harrison (DMA ’15) will launch a new online concert series, Concert Cast, on Tues., Sept. 1. An advocate for contemporary saxophone music, Harrison will perform with pianist Jason Lo (MM ’12, DMA ’16) in a program that features works by Bozza, Eiunaudi, Rachmaninoff, Ravel, and more. The event will […]


Gina Luciani holding flute with headphones on

Gina Luciani to release original arrangement of Bizet’s “Carmen Fantasy”

August 31, 2020

USC Thornton alum and flutist Gina Luciani (MM ‘13) will release an arrangement of Georges Bizet’s “Carmen Fantasy” in September. A celebrated studio musician with an active following, Luciani’s version has been over 10 years in the making and features music for both flute and piano. Luciana was first introduced to “Carmen Fantasy” at the […]


Javier Morales-Martinez holding clarinet

Javier Morales-Martinez receives Music Academy of the West Fast Pitch Award

August 27, 2020

Undergraduate clarinetist Javier Morales-Martinez was one of three winners of Music Academy of the West’s Fast Pitch Awards in July. During the live online event, Morales-Martinez and other students pitched entrepreneurial ideas for new endeavors in classical performance, presentation and social impact, and received live feedback from industry professionals. Morales-Martinez pitched an initiative to create […]


Juan Pablo Contreras holding notepad and pencil

Juan Pablo Contreras appears on Trilloquy podcast with Garrett McQueen

July 30, 2020

Juan Pablo Contreras, Latin GRAMMY-nominated composer and a doctoral student in the Composition program, is a guest on the latest episode of Trilloquy, a podcast hosted by USC Thornton alum Garrett McQueen (MM ’12). On Trilloquy, McQueen hosts conversations about challenging the status quo and addressing inequities in classical music. In his interview with McQueen, […]


Picture of cellist's hand with bow

Twelve Thornton students and alumni among winners of 2020-2021 Beverly Hills National Auditions

July 26, 2020

Winners of the 2020-2021 Beverly Hills National Auditions (BHNA) were recently announced, and among them are a long list of 12 students and alumni of USC Thornton. Each year, the BHNA selects winners to be presented the following season in a series of monthly concerts across Southern California. In consideration of restrictions on in-person events, […]


Jim Self

Jim Self interviewed on podcast Chicago Music Revealed

July 20, 2020

Winds & Percussion faculty member and tuba player Jim Self was recently interviewed on the music podcast Chicago Music Revealed. In the episode, Self discusses his long career as a studio musician for films such as Jurassic Park and King Kong, as well as his recent album and history of collaboration with guitarist John Chiodini. […]


Yasmina Spiegelberg holding clarinet

Three Thornton artists join Yellow Barn Summer Artist Residency concert series

July 13, 2020

Three students and alumni of USC Thornton will appear as artists in residence at Yellow Barn this summer and perform in the organization’s first-ever virtual concert series: cellist and graduate certificate student Coleman Itzkoff (MM ’16); cellist Gabriel Martins (BM ’19); and clarinetist and artist diploma student Yasmina Spiegelberg (GCRT ’17). The three musicians will […]


News archive