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Music Academy of the West Fellows Conclude Immersion with New York Philharmonic

Posted January 19, 2017

Zarin Mehta Fellows New York Philharmonic

For the third consecutive year, the New York Philharmonic hosted a group of fellows from Music Academy of the West selected to participate in the New York Philharmonic Global Academy Fellowship Program — an immersion in the life of an orchestra musician.

From January 6 to 15 eleven fellows, selected by audition, came to New York as Zarin Mehta Fellows, working closely with Philharmonic musicians in one-on-one lessons, mock auditions, and chamber music coaching. They even rehearsed and played alongside Philharmonic musicians in Brahms’s Symphony No. 3 for the subscription concerts January 11–14, conducted by Music Director Alan Gilbert.

After the January 12 concert, Board Member Alec Baldwin — who supports the Global Academy Fellowship Program via The Hilaria and Alec Baldwin Foundation, Inc. — hosted a champagne reception. Above, the Zarin Mehta Fellows pose with guests including: Principal Timpani Markus Rhoten (third from left); New York Philharmonic Global Academy Director Michele Balm (fourth from left); Music Director Alan Gilbert (eighth from left); Alec and Hilaria Baldwin (center left); Principal Associate Concertmaster Sheryl Staples (center); President Matthew VanBesien (behind Ms. Staples); and Principal Clarinet Anthony McGill (sixth from right).

Santa Barbara's Music Academy of the West is the first U.S.–based partner in the New York Philharmonic Global Academy, which is connecting with institutions worldwide to train pre-professional orchestra musicians of the future by harnessing the Philharmonic’s deep resources for national and international collaborations. Described by Gilbert as “a window into the real life of the orchestral musician,” the Fellowship allows students to learn directly from Philharmonic musicians, a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

1. During a rehearsal break on January 10, Music Director Alan Gilbert announces to the Zarin Mehta Fellows that all of them had proven themselves well equipped to perform alongside the Philharmonic in the January 11–14 concerts:

2. Bunny horns? After a toast following the Zarin Mehta Fellows' first concert performing with the Philharmonic, Associate Principal Viola Rebecca Young photo-bombs Zarin Mehta Fellows Hyeree Yu and Ao Peng:

3. Michael Daley performs in Brahms's Third Symphony:

 4. Emily Switzer performs in Brahms's Third Symphony:

5. Zarin Mehta Fellow Minji Choi poses for a selfie with Mr. Baldwin at the January 12 post-concert reception:

6. "I kindly accepted his request for a #selfie," quips Zarin Mehta Fellow Rainer Saville in his Instagram post from the January 12 reception:

(Photos: top,3–5 Chris Lee; 2,6 Courtesy of Zarin Mehta Fellows)