YOLA National Institute’s First Semester

The YOLA National Institute (YNI)—a free, in-depth training program for young musicians interested in pursuing a career in music—has wrapped the first semester of its first fellowship class, which began in July 2019. Twenty-two students from across the country are working together as a cohort over the course of the academic year, traveling together, investigating various career pathways, and supporting each other as they navigate the college application process or their first year of college. They are being introduced to a wide variety of artists, engaging in their own creative projects, and working to better understand themselves as they build their futures.

Already since July, musicians have traveled together to Edinburgh and London to perform alongside the LA Phil and collaborate with their peers locally; met monthly via videoconferencing; and began to explore their identities, prompted by questions such as:

Who am I?

Who are my people?

What do I want?

Each monthly videoconferencing session is led by Alex Laing (Principal Clarinet of The Phoenix Symphony), Evan Tobias (Associate Professor of Music Education at Arizona State University), and RE:FRAME Youth Arts Center in collaboration with the LA Phil’s Associate Director, Social Innovation Phil Bravo and Education Project Manager Angelica Cortez. Sessions have featured musicians such as LA Phil trumpet player Christopher Still and horn player and educator Annie Bosler.

The first year of YNI will culminate at the next annual YOLA National Festival and Symposium in July 2020.

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