The New York Philharmonic

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Young People’s Concert: Youth as Creator

Mar 05


On the 25th anniversary of the New York Philharmonic Very Young Composers Program, we celebrate the power of children’s imaginations and showcase their captivating ideas. The Orchestra will perform works created by participants in Very Young Programs based in New York City, Finland, Israel, and Shanghai, as well as by Jon Deak, the program’s founder and director who hosts the concert.

Young People’s Concerts are intended for children ages 6–12 and their families. All are welcome, but each person requires a ticket.

All attendees, including children, will be required to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19 with a vaccine authorized by the World Health Organization or the Food and Drug Administration. Children under 5 years of age, who are currently not eligible for vaccination, will not be permitted entry.

In addition, all guests attending Philharmonic performances must maintain appropriate face coverings in accordance with current CDC guidelines.

For our current health and safety guidelines, please visit

Learn more about Young People’s Concerts.

Young People’s Concert: Youth as Creator


2:00 PM





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Alice Tully Hall


1 Hour
No Intermission


Saevar Rodine

Tyr and Fenrir

Jon Deak

B.B. Wolf, for solo bass

Very Young Composers of PS 199

Selections from The Colorful Variations

Paloma Alonso

Sweating Bullets

NY Phil Very Young Composer Mio Mićić

Raft Dino Spies

Aino Hartonen

Two Worlds

Wendi Wen

Lady Liberty in a Thunderstorm (World Premiere)

Very Young Composer Naama Rolnick

Keep Walking

Isai Rabiu

Selection from Wonder (World Premeire)

Camryn Cowan

Harlem Shake


  • James Blachly


    James Blachly is a Grammy Award–winning conductor dedicated to enriching the concert experience by connecting with audiences in memorable and meaningful ways. His world premiere recording of English composer Dame Ethel Smyth’s 1930 masterpiece The Prison, released on Chandos Records, won a 2021 Grammy Award, was shortlisted for a Gramophone Award, and was widely acclaimed by The New York Times, The New Yorker, San Francisco Chronicle, Financial Times, The Guardian, and many others. 

    James Blachly serves as music director of the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra and of the Experiential Orchestra, and is in increasing demand as a versatile guest conductor in diverse repertoire. In 2021 he made his debut at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in Celebrating Arvo Pärt, a concert featuring the world premiere of Pärt’s O Holy Father Nicholas. In 2022 he holds a week-long residency at Montclair State University, culminating in an immersive concert featuring the music of Jessie Montgomery.

    In 2020 Blachly was invited to serve as the associate editor and orchestral liaison for the African Diaspora Music Project, directed by Dr. Louise Toppin. He is the co-founder of Make Music NOLA, an El Sistema–inspired program in New Orleans in its 11th year, and in 2015 he was the only US conductor to be invited to Venezuela to participate in their 40th anniversary Young Conductor Showcase.

    A strong supporter of composers of our time, Blachly has commissioned and premiered more than 50 works, and in recent seasons he has collaborated with soloists including Julia Bullock, Dashon Burton, Helga Davis, Sarah Brailey, Andrés Cárdenes, Michael Chioldi, Karen Kim, Andrew Yee, Paul Jacobs, Michelle Cann, and Ashley Jackson.

    As a composer, his music has been performed at The Stone and Zankel Hall, in Europe and across the US, in an audience with the Pope, and has been broadcast live on the CBC.

    Learn more about James Blachly
  • Jon Deak

    Bass and Co-Host

    Jon Deak is Artistic Director of the Very Young Composers of the New York Philharmonic, an international, award-winning program he founded in 1995 in which children in grades 4–9 compose and orchestrate their own music to be performed by the New York Philharmonic and many other orchestras and ensembles. Under his leadership the New York Philharmonic has given more than 100 World Premieres of works written and orchestrated by children 13 years of age and under, and the program has spread to 60 locations on four continents.

    Learn more about Jon Deak
  • Jordan Millar


    Fifteen-year-old Brooklyn composer Jordan Millar studies piano and began composing at age nine in the New York Philharmonic Very Young Composers Program. At 10, her piece The Rhythm of Life was performed at a Very Young Composers Showcase immediately before a Young People’s Concert (YPC) with composer John Adams. Her Boogie Down Uptown was performed at a YPC and during the New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Park, and was featured in The New York Times.

    Learn more about Jordan Millar
  • Jessica Mays

    Guest Speaker, Co-Host

    Jessica Mays is a composer, pianist, and songwriter based in New York City and her hometown of Denver, Colorado. She also manages the New York Philharmonic Very Young Composers Program. Her music has been performed both locally and abroad by a wide variety of soloists, ensembles, and orchestras including the New York Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra, Playground Ensemble, Ensemble Paramirabo, Ensemble Lunatik, Blackbox Ensemble, Thin Edge New Music Collective, The Labo de musique contemporaine de Montréal, and many others. She has been featured by a variety of festivals as composer and performer, including the Chelsea Music Festival, Loon Lake Live, and the Cluster Music Festival. She has written arrangements for large and small forces in a variety of projects with the Colorado Symphony. Her music has received praise from such major publications as The Boston Globe and the Boston Musical Intelligencer.

    Learn more about Jessica Mays
  • Isai Rabiu

    Guest Speaker

Special Thanks

Support for Young People’s Concerts is provided by The Theodore H. Barth Foundation, The Brodsky Family Foundation, and Sally E. Cummins.


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