Colburn Chamber Music Society
Colburn Conservatory of Music’s flagship ensemble brings stages to life across Southern California
Ambassador Auditorium Subscription Available
OCT 1, 2022 · Ruth Reinhardt conducts Brahms, Bartok, and Desenclos*
OCT 29, 2022 · Courtney Lewis conducts Dvořák, Ligeti, and Elgar
NOV 19, 2022 · Yehuda Gilad conducts Brahms, Shostakovich, and Coleridge-Taylor*
JAN 28, 2023 · Simone Menezes conducts Tchaikovsky, Crusell, and Guarnieri
FEB 25, 2023 · James Conlon conducts Beethoven and Schubert*
MAR 26, 2023 · Lionel Bringuier conducts Rachmaninoff, Berlioz, and Boulanger
APR 23, 2023 · Stéphane Denève conducts Ravel, Strauss, Korngold, and Frank
*Ambassador Auditorium concert
Tickets for the October 29, January 28, March 26, and April 23 concerts will be available soon.
The Colburn Orchestra is generously underwritten by Eva and Marc Stern.
Renowned guest artists are joined on stage by Conservatory of Music students and faculty for a series of intimate performances.
Full Series Subscription Available
SEP 18, 2022 · David Rejano, Trombone
OCT 16, 2022 · Tessa Lark, Violin
NOV 6, 2022 · Andy Akiho, Percussion
DEC 4, 2022 · Afendi Yusuf, Clarinet
FEB 12, 2023 · Marc Coppey, Cello
APR 2, 2023 · Jon Kimura Parker, Piano
The Colburn Chamber Music Society series is generously supported by the Henry Family.
Thank you for joining us for Colburn’s 2022 Open House. Please fill out the form below. Enjoy your class!
Thank you for your donation to the Colburn School. Please fill out the form below.
The Community School is excited to announce the return of choral ensembles this fall! Students ages 5-18 can develop their musicianship, vocal technique, and ensembles skills in one of our three choirs directed by our new Choir Director, Adrian Dunn.
Adrian Dunn is an accomplished singer, composer and conductor. Mr. Dunn holds a Bachelor and Master of Music degree in Voice from The Music Conservatory at Roosevelt University with additional musical studies in opera at The Sibelius Academy of Music in Finland.
Mr. Dunn is a MacArthur grant recipient for this original work, Hopera: A Hip Hop Opera. He has opened for international Hip Hop Recording Artist, The Roots, at Indiana University, and he served as principle vocal coach for Kanye West’s artist development program, Donda’s House. He was a featured artist and vocal coach for the live DVD recording of the Higher Ground Gospel Choir in Helsinki, Finland. He has toured throughout the United States, South Africa, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Scandinavia.
Auditions for the 2022-23 academic year will be held on Saturday, August 20 in Mayman Hall from 12-4 pm. Sign up to audition using the link below:
Choral Audition Sign-Up Form
*We encourage students to audition even if they do not have a song prepared.
The Colburn Community School welcomes students of all ages and ability levels. Learn from renowned faculty at Los Angeles’ premier performing arts school, located in downtown.
Fall instruction begin Monday, August 22
*New students receive a discount if they enroll during the Open House
Students can register online or register by email.
2022-23 Schedule of Classes (PDF)
Register By Email (PDF)
To register by email, please send the completed PDF form to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please see the 2022 Fall Semester Update page for the latest information on online and in-person instruction.
Learn About Summer 2022 Class Offerings on our Summer with Colburn page.
We recommend that students and parents regularly review our academic calendars for updates. The Colburn School only observes holidays noted on our calendar. We do not follow the Los Angeles Unified School District calendar or that of other districts.
2022-23 Academic Calendar (PDF)
At the Colburn Community School of Performing Arts, students of all ages and ability levels can receive one-on-one instruction on any instrument, including voice. Our esteemed faculty share their expertise to help students develop their musicianship, technique, and confidence.
Students enrolled in private lessons also gain access to additional performance opportunities at Colburn, including Friday Night Recitals, the Winter and McAllister Honors Recitals, and master classes with renowned guest artists. Additionally, these students qualify for a 50% tuition discount on any music theory group class – these classes are instrumental in any young musician’s development as it helps them explore and understand the inner workings of their craft.
All students interested in private lessons must first submit an inquiry using the form below.
Approximately 14 days after submitting your inquiry, you will be notified by the appropriate department chair to set up an interview and/or audition in order to determine placement.
For 2022-23 private instruction pricing, please see page 3 in the Schedule of Classes. Need-based scholarships are available for qualifying students.
The Community School is proud to offer a wide selection of student ensembles, giving students of varying ages and ability levels the opportunity to collaborate with their peers and develop their musicianship.
Auditions for the 2022-23 academic year are open for the following ensembles:
All other ensembles may accept auditions depending on ensemble needs. Please submit an inquiry for more information.
Since its inaugural year of 2013, the Herbert Zipper Scholars program has offered comprehensive, tuition-free music education to the most talented young musicians from low-income families in the Los Angeles area.
The scholarships given to the Zipper Scholars is substantial, and a particularly special component of the program is its “whole student” approach. Each Zipper Scholar has a complete and custom curriculum curated for them so that they are given every tool necessary to excel and realize their talent. In addition to coursework, ensemble participation, and private lessons, their education includes juries, performances, and the camaraderie that comes from meeting other young musicians on the Colburn campus.
In the 2021-2022 school year the Herbert Zipper Scholars program budget was $337,000 and supported 36 students with scholarships ranging from $3,400 – $11,270.
With the entire pathway at Colburn, from Early Childhood to Band, Strings, Harp, and Herbert Zipper Scholars, students from some of the lowest income areas of Los Angeles and the least represented minority communities have access to a Colburn education at every stage of their musical development.
The Zipper Scholars program is designed to deliver a comprehensive and meaningful education that ensures that each Scholar is prepared for postsecondary education and is ready to thrive as a student artist. Their progress is measured across several metrics: increasing level of difficulty of repertoire; improved confidence and mastery of instrument; deeper musical comprehension through music theory classes; successful audition and placement into applicable ensembles and continued improvement in seating and ensemble placement; sustained high level of inter- est and commitment to musical studies; participation in recitals, competitions, and festivals; and positive feedback from panels in annual juried recitals. In addition, the Zipper Scholars’ academic life is diligently monitored, as a well-rounded education is paramount to a student’s success.
As part of our “whole student” approach, each student benefits from an academic advisor who mentors them throughout their studies at Colburn. Upon graduation, each Scholar will take with them confidence, experience, knowledge, and preparedness to continue their studies in a 4-year college, university, or music conservatory.
Spend your summer with Colburn and immerse yourself in your art. Our on-campus intensives and seminars allow participants to enhance their skills with expert instruction from Colburn’s esteemed faculty and an array of renowned guest artists.
The Colburn Summer Chamber Music Intensive provides focused ensemble playing for the serious chamber music student. Students will be grouped into a trio, quartet, or quintet and learn an entire work during their time together. Along with rehearsals, students will participate in stage presence activities, team building, master classes, and other group-building activities. Coaches from the Ed and Mari Edelman Chamber Music Institute will provide instruction, along with other chamber music professionals.
Additional lessons may be available upon request. Program subject to change based on enrollment.
10:30 am–4:30pm daily
13-18 years old
Students who were not in the 2021-22 Ed and Mari Edelman Chamber Music Institute must submit the following:
Current Colburn chamber music students do not need to submit the video, but the application form is still required.
Students can choose to apply for Week 1 (July 3-9), Week 2 (July 11-16), or the whole 2-week program. Students will need to have an upper intermediate level of playing. Prior chamber music experience is recommended, but not required. The program is open to string instruments (violin, viola, cello, and double bass) and piano. Non-Colburn students are welcome and encouraged to apply. Pre-formed groups are welcome to apply and will be kept together. Continuing Colburn Community School students are eligible for an automatic discount.
The Musical Theatre Intensive for high school and college artists gives musical theatre artists an exhilarating two-week intensive in dance, acting, and voice with an informal presentation at the conclusion. Led by Colburn faculty with extensive experience in the industry, students will build on their strengths and techniques, as well as their individual skillsets and personalities on stage.
Program subject to change based on enrollment.
High School and College Students
Monday-Friday, 10 am–6 pm
Across his final years, in Southern California, in the early 1960s, Ernst Toch used to characterize himself as “the world’s most forgotten composer,” and even though the joke betrayed a certain wincing validity, it was as nothing compared to the fact of the origins of his musical vocation, seventy five years earlier, in Vienna, Austro-Hungary, which were almost unprecedented in their oddness. Born (1887) into a modest Jewish family a mere generation out of the eastern shtetls, this musical prodigy had to develop his own talents against the family’s express wishes and in complete secrecy (learning to sightread by watching a tenant violinist and to compose by copying out Mozart quartet pocket scores). By age seventeen he had already composed six string quartets, and at age 22 he was able to suspend his medical studies, having been awarded the coveted quadrennial Mozart Prize, which came with a fellowship to a conservatory in Frankfurt, Germany. He enjoyed considerable local success in the years leading up to the First World War (his own work evincing a certain late Brahmsian flavor), but in 1914, a fierce patriot, he returned to Vienna and volunteered as an infantry officer and was thrown into the meatgrinder of the Italian front, barely surviving, and emerging from the experience a changed man, or at any rate a transformed composer.
Returning to Germany, he shot to the forefront of the spiky, propulsive Neue Musik movement, quickly becoming one of its most celebrated proponents, with all manner of compositions receiving performances by the era’s foremost musicians. In addition, he became a regular fixture at the annual experimental music festivals, pioneering an entirely new genre with his spoken chorus creations (including the “Geographical Fugue,” a sort of Weimar precursor to rap). Walter Gieseking performed Toch’s first piano concerto over fifty times, that is until Hitler’s ascension to power, whereupon he promptly dropped it from his repertoire.
As Toch’s musical world shuddered to a stop all around him, he now fled first to Paris, then London, then New York (where he founded the composition department at the University in Exile at the New School) and, at the urging of his new friend and advocate George Gershwin, on to Hollywood, where his modernist idiom was prized for chase scenes and horror effects (and garnered three Academy Award nominations). He also threw himself into teaching—university (USC) and private (Andre Previn, among others)—in a frenzy of distraction, all in an effort to earn money for affidavits to rescue friends and large family left behind. His own creative efforts dried to an agonized trickle, and especially after the horrific revelations on the far side of the war (fully half of his family and countless friends had perished in the Holocaust), he fell into profound despair, culminating in a devastating heart attack in 1948 which almost killed him, after which he gave up extraneous activities and gave himself over exclusively to his own work.
As if making up for lost time, his last fifteen years proved his most prolific. At age fifty Toch threw himself into an entirely new genre, at least for himself, composing seven symphonies, the first three of which (profoundly, wrenchingly autobiographical) were awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1955. There were as well countless piano suites, string quartets, orchestral works, a Scheherazade opera, another spoken chorus piece—all to no seeming avail, for he had become as if lost to time. Always an independent spirit (leader and follower of no school) who insisted on striking a balance between innovation and tradition, he was now regularly getting dismissed by both the avant garde and hidebound traditionalists. Hence that sense of being so thoroughly forgotten. After he died in Santa Monica, in October 1964, the drafts of yet another string quartet were found by his bedside.
But there has been an upwelling of interest in Toch across more recent years, orchestral performances, museum shows (back in Vienna), the premiere of that last opera, and a veritable surge in CD recordings. Most excitingly, his work seems to be being rediscovered by a new generation, who prize it for the mastery of its craftsmanship and the depth of its inspiration.
— Lawrence (Toch) Weschler
For more, see the long-form piece, “My Grandfather’s Last Tale,” included in Weschler’s collection Vermeer in Bosnia, and also, with other pieces about the whole émigré scene in Southern California, in the archive of his website, at www.lawrenceweschler.com.
Images courtesy of Toch Archive, UCLA Library Department of Special Collections, and the Weschler/Toch Family
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