Youth Orchestra To Take Stage Nov. 24


Henry Shin, the new music director and conductor of the Glendale Youth Orchestra. Courtesy photos

The Glendale Youth Orchestra will perform its season-opening concert at the historic Alex Theatre in Glendale on Sunday, Nov. 24. This marks the 31st season for the GYO, which was formed in 1989 by a group of music lovers and school teachers in Glendale.

The program, titled “New Adventures,” will feature an overture from Giuseppe Verdi’s opera, Nabucco; Symphony No. 9 in E minor and Op. 95 “From the New World” by Dvorak; and The Jedi Steps and Finale from Star Wars: The Force Awakens by composer John Williams. Dozens of students from local L.A. County schools will be performing the musical compositions.

“We have 52 members from all over Los Angeles County,” said Mara Kelly, GYO board president and alum. “About 55 percent live in Glendale and the others live in neighboring cities such as Pasadena, San Marino, Arcadia and San Gabriel. More than half of the orchestra are returning members, and every member auditions each season. The age range of our performers is from 8 to 22 years old.”

The performance will also mark the debut of the orchestra’s new music director and conductor, Henry Shin. He is replacing Brad Keimach, conductor emeritus, who retired in May after 19 seasons. Shin also serves as director of orchestra at Pasadena City College and is the music director and conductor of the nationally acclaimed Harmony Project Orchestras, Hollywood, the Valley Philharmonic Orchestra in Porter Ranch and the Kadima Conservatory Philharmonic in Pacoima.

The GYO is funded in part by a grant from the L.A. County Arts Commission. The GYO was founded to provide an opportunity for young musicians to perform a great orchestra repertoire in a professional venue.

“Our audiences always comment on the high-quality of the music and the professional manner in which the concerts are presented,” Kelly said. “There will be a wide range of musical styles that will be presented at the upcoming concert. Our concerts are reasonably priced, and everyone always has a wonderful time. People always tell us that if they closed their eyes, they would not know they were listening to a group of high schoolers.”

General-admission tickets cost $15; students, children and seniors are $12. Groups of 15 or more receive 15 percent off. Tickets can be purchased from the Alex Theatre box office. For more information, call (818) 243-ALEX or visit

Members of the GYO during a past concert.
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Kamala Kirk is a contributing writer for the South Pasadena Review, San Marino Tribune and The Quarterly Magazine. Kamala formerly served as Managing Editor of Beauty Launchpad Magazine, West Coast Editor of American Salon Magazine, and Digital Editor for E! Online. A native of Hermosa Beach, California, she is a proud USC Trojan and pug mom to Wrigley the Pug (@pugofpasadena).