Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, the Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles, and USC Thornton School of Music have partnered since 2017 in a comprehensive post-graduate program designed to increase diversity in American orchestras. The LA Orchestra Fellows regularly rehearse and perform with LACO, teach and mentor the young students of ICYOLA, and receive a graduate certificate from USC.

The Fellows will participate in a 2-year program, comprised of several mutually agreeable weeks of work with LACO that consist of orchestral services, chamber music coaching and concerts, a recital, mock auditions, and teaching artist opportunities through LACO’s Meet the Music initiatives and with ICYOLA. The LA Orchestra fellowship has a $5000.00 annual minimum guarantee and does not require the musicians to live in Los Angeles. Should a candidate choose to reside outside of LA County, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra will provide travel and housing for the weeks in which the fellow is a resident artist.  The LA Orchestra Fellowship also provides financial support for participating musicians to take auditions and accept work with other orchestras.

Successful applicants will be members of historically underrepresented groups in western classical music ensembles.

Malik Taylor

Malik Taylor is a young, gifted musician who hails from Los Angeles’ Inner City. His music career began at Bret Harte Middle School in South Central Los Angeles, where he was introduced to the horn by his middle school band teacher, Greg Martin. Martin assisted in helping Taylor participate in the UCLA Outreach Program, and at age 13, he was selected for the Los Angeles Unified School District Honor Band and the California All State Honors Band. He received the California State Senate Award, Los Angeles Mayor Award and Maxine Waters Award for music in 2011. After graduating from Bret Harte, Taylor was accepted to attend Los Angeles County High School for the Arts (LACHSA). While there, he performed in the Cal State University of Los Angeles Wind Ensemble and also became a member of the Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (ICYOLA), where he continues to serve as Principal Horn. Upon completion of LACHSA, Taylor attended Shenandoah University in Winchester, West Virginia for one semester. Upon returning to Los Angeles, he was admitted to the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California, from which he graduated in the spring of 2020. While at Bret Harte, Taylor studied with Bob Watt, former Assistant Principal Horn of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the first African American French horn hired by a major symphony Orchestra in the United States. Watt became Malik’s mentor, and he continues to serve as one of his primary teachers to this day. While at Shenandoah, Taylor studied with Joe Lovinsky, and he is currently in the studio of Steven Becknell, principal horn of the Los Angeles Opera. He has performed with the Pepperdine University Symphony Orchestra, Wind Ensemble and Opera Orchestra, the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic, and several prestigious orchestras and ensembles throughout Southern California. According to Taylor, “I’ll never forget the first time I blew into a French horn. It sent chills through my body! When I blew into that horn of over twenty-four feet of coiled brass, the sound exploded. It was a, glorious, mellow and beautiful sound and I loved it. I had found a voice to pursue my musical passions. I had no idea how many opportunities mastering this instrument would provide; I just wanted to play the French horn.”

Myles Yeazell

Myles Yeazell

Myles Yeazell recently completed his Bachelor of Music for Cello Performance at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) studying under Alan Rafferty. As he attends the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California as a member of The Los Angeles Orchestra Fellowship, he will earn his Graduate Certificate and will study with LACO Principal Cello Andrew Shulman. Yeazell began cello at the age of 12 and started taking lessons from Alan Rafferty and Sarah Kim in high school with the support of the Ben Carlson-Berne Scholarship Fund. As a senior, he placed as a national semifinalist in the 19th Annual Sphinx Competition and was a finalist in the 2015 Cincinnati Young Artists Cello Competition. In his freshman year at CCM he was a finalist in the 2017 Tennessee Collegiate Cello Workshop Competition. Yeazell has played in several masterclasses for cellists such as Melissa Kraut, Merry Peckham, William Grubb, Hans Jensen, Natasha Brofsky and Matt Haimovitz.