The USC Thornton Strings department is a nationally distinguished top-tier program. Its eminent artist-teachers are distinguished in both individual instruction and coaching for chamber music. Exceptional standards of professionalism in performance and teaching have been upheld for more than a century by a faculty that has included Jascha Heifetz, Gregor Piatigorsky and William Primrose. More recent faculty have included Donald McInnes, Midori Goto, Glenn Dicterow, and the chair of the Strings department, Ralph Kirshbaum.

Strings students will have the opportunity to participate in the varied, professional-level performance groups on campus, including the USC Thornton Symphony, the USC Thornton Chamber Orchestra and many prize-winning chamber ensembles.



event calendar

Upcoming events

  • Strings Showcase

    Outstanding students of Thornton’s Strings program present an evening of solo and chamber performances.

    Ramo Recital Hall (BMH)

  • Music at Rush Hour: Harp Masterworks

    Harpists Caroline Wilkins and Seika Dong from the studio of Professor JoAnn Turovsky present an enthralling and varied program of music for harp, including the music of Paradisi, Faure, Renie and more!

    Ramo Recital Hall (BMH)

  • Music at Rush Hour: Music for Violin and Piano

    From Viennese Classical to French Romantic to Chinese Traditional, violinist Yuqi Li and pianist Hanbo Ma present an engaging program of music for violin and piano from around the world.

    Ramo Recital Hall (BMH)

  • Strings: Studio Showcase

    USC Thornton’s Strings students present an evening of solo and chamber works.

    MacDonald Recital Hall (MUS)

  • Strings: Chamber Music Showcase

    Select chamber music ensembles from the Strings program perform movements from classic repertoire.

    MacDonald Recital Hall (MUS)

  • Strings: Concerto Competition Finals

    Finalists from the Strings program perform virtuosic concert pieces and concertos as part of this annual competition.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • more videos


    news archive


    Sarah Rommel earns glowing review

    February 21, 2019

    In January, the Hans India Newspaper gave cellist and USC Thornton alumna Sarah Rommel (GRCT ’14, MM ’16) a glowing review for her performance with the ‘State of the Art’ (SOTA) Resonance Festival presented by British Airways at the Trident in India. In an interview with the newspaper, Rommel discussed… read more

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