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Students Demonstrate Benefits of LAMusArt’s Tuition-Free Music Programs

Roses, kittens, castles, and a galaxy far, far, away – these are just some of the whimsical musical themes presented by LAMusArt students at this year’s Concierto de Primavera.

On Sunday, April 26, 2015 over 300 guests attended the annual concert at the East Los Angeles College Performing Arts Theatre in support of 88 local student musicians, teaching artists, and tuition-free programs that enable them to engage in music education and performance. Each year LAMusArt tuition-free programs, such as the Youth Orchestra Program and the Music Outreach Partnership Program (MOPP) with KIPP L.A. schools, provide over 150 hours of music instruction to local East Los Angeles youth.

Student members of tuition-free programs gain experience in ensemble performance and repertoire, with opportunities to present their work to live audiences. Support from community members, foundation sponsors, and parents allow these programs and students to thrive each year.

LAMusArt vocal leading ladies opened this year’s Concierto de Primavera, beginning with first-time Concierto vocalist Cadiz Salazar, who performed a playful rendition of the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic, “My Favorite Things.” A special duet of “Castle on a Cloud” from Les Miserables musical was sung by Brianna Arias and Azucena Ortega, who were followed by Adriana Ortega and her performance of “God Help the Outcasts” from Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Closing the first act was pianist Samantha Fang, who wowed the audience with her performance of “The Serpent’s Kiss” by William Balcolm.

Student ensemble members of tuition-free programs were next to perform. Timothy Maloof, MOPP Teaching Artist, led our youngest violin, viola, and cello students on a series of orchestral performances. They were followed by members of the Junior Orchestra, featuring pianist soloist Alejandra Ortega, and led by LAMusArt Musical Director, Dr. Gideon Rubin. Next, members of the Youth Orchestra Strings and Percussion ensembles performed, led by Dr. Rubin and Teaching Artist Eddie Trager, respectively.

To close the show in high musical fashion, the full Youth Orchestra ensemble, conducted by Dr. Rubin, performed the Star Wars crowd-favorite: “The Empire Strikes Back” by John Williams. The high energy performance and resounding score merited an audience standing ovation to close the show.

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