CURRENT MUSIC DIRECTORS.
IYCA MUSIC DIRECTOR (2008-Present)
The 2008-2009 season marked a new era for IYCA, as conductor Dean Anderson began his tenure as IYCA’s Chief Music Director. A widely sought conductor, Maestro Anderson conducts the Montage Civic Orchestra, the Fullerton College Orchestra, the Dongshin Youth Orchestra, in addition to his duties with the Irvine Young Concert Artists.
In January 2011, Dean made history as the first American to conduct in Saigon since the end of the Vietnam War. Conducting the Ho Chi Minh Ballet Symphony for the 20th Anniversary of the Saigon Times, Maestro Anderson is a cultural ambassador of the highest order, embracing the worldly visions of IYCA.
In 2011 and 2012, Dean Anderson will be traveling with IYCA musicians to guest conduct in Vietnam (Saigon), Hong Kong, Thailand (Bangkok), India, Italy (Arezzo), England (London), and France (Paris).
Every concert begins and ends with a joint musical collaboration, where old friends meet new ones. It is where IYCA engages in cultural exchange at the international level, exemplified in our founding philosophy: “A World Apart…In Music Together.” As a cultural ambassador, Dean’s travels will facilitate IYCA to make new friends worldwide.
A proponent of modern music, Dean Anderson is a true visionary. In April 2010, Maestro Anderson invited a select number of IYCA students to Capitol Records (Hollywood) for an exclusive recording session. The students performed alongside seasoned professionals film music written by Kostas Christids and Minos Matsas. The music recorded from this eight hour recording session can be heard in the documentary With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story (2010).
DEAN ANDERSON: BIOGRAPHY
For over a decade, Dean Anderson has conducted orchestras at the professional, university, community, and youth levels. He has worked with artists such as Smokey Robinson, Manhattan Transfer, John Tesh, Jimmy Hopper, Lincoln Mayorga, and Arlo Guthrie.
As music director, Maestro Anderson has conducted the Columbia Civic Orchestra, the Stephens College Theater Orchestra, the Missouri Youth Symphony, the University of Missouri Chamber Soloists (founded), and the Orange County Symphony. Additionally, he has been invited to guest conduct the Capistrano Valley Symphony, the Rose Chamber Orchestra, the Cerritos College Orchestra and the Yakima Season’s Festival Orchestra.
A versatile conductor, Mr. Khomik Anderson has collaborated with various artistic organizations such as the Chance Theater, the La Habra Depot Theater, the Maverick Theater, and the Biola University Theater Department. Productions under his music direction include Cabaret, I Love You You’re Perfect Now Change, A Grand Night for Singing, the Fantasticks, Company, Closer than Ever, FIG:RO (Retro Opera), A Chorus Line, Snow White, Nuncrackers, Anything Goes, Fiddler on the Roof, Chicago, and Into the Woods. He has conducted several ballet performances with the Anaheim Ballet including productions of Peter and the Wolf and Nutcracker.
Mr. Anderson studied conducting at the University of Missouri – Columbia with Edward Dolbashian. He has also studied under Gustav Meier, Marin Alsop, Mark Gibson, Mihail Agafita, and Don Thulean.
Currently music director at Fullerton College Symphony, Mr. Khomik Anderson also conducts the Montage Civic Orchestra, the Dong Shin Youth Orchestra, and the Irvine Young Concert Artists (www.
IYCA FOUNDER & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR (2005-Present)
Violinist Albert Wu began playing the violin at the age of ten and actively teaches in Irvine, California. Albert Wu has performed in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Florence, Milan, Taipei, Seoul, and Tokyo. After a concert in 1994, the “LA Times” wrote Albert to be “a promising young violinist with intellect, intensity, and lyricism.” In 1998, Albert made his solo debut in Budapest, Munich, Vienna, and Salzburg. In 2001, Albert Wu was invited by Ms. Claire Hodgkins to perform in a special centennial recital for the Jascha Heifetz Society.
A pupil of Haroutune Bedelian, Mischa Lefkowicz, Jan Tawroscewicz, Mehli Mehta, Yuval Yaron, and Franco Gulli, Albert studied at UC Irvine and Indiana University. He has also studied under Janos Starker, Gyorgy Sebok, Peter Schmidl, the Juilliard String Quartet, the Cleveland String Quartet, and concertmasters of the Vienna Philharmonic and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestras.
In addition to winning top prizes in the finals of the Bach Young Artists National Competition (1998), the National ASTA Violin Competition (1992), and the Pacific Symphony Chinese-American Violin Competition (1992), Albert has also been the first prizewinner in the Musical Clubs Competition, Exchange Clubs Talent Search, and numerous other national violin competitions. In 2005, Albert Wu was invited to judge the Korean Youth Music Festival Competition alongside Irvine Mayor Sukhee Kang.
An active proponent of modern music, Albert has performed, recorded, and championed works by composers Tyzen Haiao, Claude Baker, David Dzubay, Don Freund, and Eugene O’Brien. A recording made on February 1999 won a Special Prize Award in the ASCAP Foundation Morton Gould Young Composer’s Competition. In 2003, Albert recorded for the Society of Composers in Jason Haney’s An die Musik. In the past, he has also recorded Hollywood film scores, musical scores for Disneyland’s Magic Music Days, performed alongside Il Divo in a music video for Universal Pictures, and at Capitol Records in Hollywood with members of the IYCA orchestra.
An active teacher, Albert Wu has served on the violin faculties at Vanguard University, Santa Ana College, Orange Coast College, the Yamaha Music School, the Tustin Music Center, the Corona del Mar High School Orchestra, and at Irvine’s University High School. In June 2003, Albert performed alongside ten of his outstanding private students in New York’s Carnegie Hall as members of the La Primavera Orchestra while an additional eight performed as members of the University High School Symphony Orchestra.
In the past, Albert has performed as first violinist in the Pacific Symphony Orchestra, the Opera Pacific Orchestra, and the LA Opera Orchestra. He has been the Concertmaster for the LA Classical Ballet Orchestra, Four Seasons Symphony, The Greater LA Metropolitan Orchestra, Costa Mesa Symphony, OCC Symphony, UCI Symphony Orchestra, La Primavera Orchestra, and the Chicago Pops Orchestra. He has also been Associate Concertmaster for the Indiana University Concert Orchestra (1997), the American Youth Symphony (under Mehli Mehta in Los Angeles, California in 1992), and the Camerata Orchestra. In 1998, he was 1st violinist in the Indiana University Philharmonic Orchestra and in the Pacific Music Festival Orchestra in Japan, touring and concertizing. To this date, Albert has performed under such great conductors as Kurt Masur, Christoph Eschenbach, Myung-Whun Chung, and Mehli Mehta. In Nov 2001, Albert was personally invited by Maestro Mehli Mehta to record Richard Strauss’ Death and Transfiguration at UCLA with former American Youth Symphony alumni’s.
An active chamber musician as well, Albert has performed chamber music in Japan with Peter Schmidl, principal clarinetist of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. He has also performed chamber music for the prestigious Taiwanese American Music Festival, sponsored by the Taiwanese American Cultural Association. In August 2005, Albert performed chamber music with his students for the Chance Theater’s Annual Fundraiser, during which the Anaheim Arts Concil, the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce, Arts Orange County, the Fullerton College Theater Arts Department, the LA Music Center, the Long Beach Playhouse, Newport Theater Arts Center, and Lufthansa Airlines were all present.
Chamber music was a focal point in 2005 as Albert performed alongside his students in chamber music performances for the Irvine City Council, the OC Philharmonic Society, and dozens of Orange County hospitals and charity organizations.
In 2001, Albert participated in six concerts in New York’s Carnegie Hall, performing with the New England Symphonic Ensemble. The NESE also extended an invitation to perform in South Africa, England, and Scotland. In June 2003, Albert again performed in Carnegie Hall, this time alongside his private students, in the Four Seasons Youth Symphony.
In 2005, Albert founded the Irvine Young Concert Artists (www.
George Shaw is a rapidly rising composer who has worked on Hollywood and independent films. He is a versatile composer with the skill for crafting rich orchestral tapestries as well as producing cutting edge electronic music to match the visual images in movies. George has received 3 best score nominations for the 2007 Film & TV Music Awards, won Best Music in a Short at the Garden State Film Festival Movie Music Competition, and 5 Gold Medals at the Park City Film Music Festival.
George is working with producers who are at the forefront of creating online content. Recent collaborations with “YouTube Personalities” include NigaHiga (who has the #1 most subscribed channel on Youtube), Kevjumba, and Wong Fu Productions. Shaw scored the NigaHiga/Wong Fu film AGENTS OF SECRET STUFF, which garnered over 3 MILLION views in the first 5 days of it’s release.
George has scored a plethora of feature films, including ASIAN STORIES, which stars James Kyson Lee from NBC’s HEROES, and SAILFISHwhich celebrated the resolve of Chinese athletes, and was released theatrically in China during the 2008 Beijing Olympics. George’s TV work includes producing music tracks for performances onAMERICA’S GOT TALENT, and he has also licensed music to shows such as AMERICA’S GOT TALENT, SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE, MILLIONAIRE MATCHMAKER, MOMMA’S BOY, MY ANTONIO, and OBSESSED.
In addition to composing, Shaw made his mark as an orchestrator working on noteworthy films includingGHOST RIDER (starring Nicolas Cage), DARWIN AWARDS (starring Winona Ryder, Joseph Fiennes), KISS, KISS, BANG, BANG (starring Val Kilmer, Robert Downey Jr.), ROBOTECH: THE SHADOW CHRONICLES, and CHASING GHOSTS (starring Michael Madsen). Shaw’s string arrangements can also be heard on Nural’sdebut album “The Weight of the World” from Hopeless Records, and singer/songwriter Kari Kimmel’s first solo album “A Life in the Day.”
Shaw studied composition and film scoring at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, taking part in its world-class Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television program. He also participated in the 2004 ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop and the 9th Annual BMI Conducting Workshop. In 2007, he was a fellow in Film Independent’s Project: Involve, a filmmaker mentorship program that paired him with Emmy-nominated composer Christopher Lennertz (MEET THE SPARTANS, ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS, MEDAL OF HONOR: EUROPEAN ASSAULT, SUPERNATURAL).
Shaw plays clarinet, piano, guitar, and a variety of exotic woodwind instruments from around the world, and enjoys shredding on Rock Band’s video game drums! George resides in Los Angeles, where he can surf and snowboard in the same day.
Kostas Christides was born in Thessaloniki, Greece. He started his musical studies when he was six years old. When he finished high school he moved to London and graduated from the London College of Music where he studied Piano, Composition and Orchestration and also received his Masters degree in Composition. He is also a graduate of the University of Southern California’s Advanced Studies Program in Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television.
Being passionate about film music since he was teenager – when he started his over 1200 soundtracks collection-, Kostas commenced working in various projects right after school.
With numerous credits to his name as a composer of original scores and an orchestrator, Christides’ accomplishments have included among others, compositions for the films, With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story, Love Happens (Universal), Black Tulip (Fox), Perkins 14 (Lions Gate), Dark Ride (Lions Gate), The Drone Virus, 29 Reasons To Run, Eduart, Crime Time Animation Series and orchestrations for, The Hurricane(Universal), Spiderman 3 (Sony Pictures), Wonder Boys (Paramount),Swordfish (Warner Bros.), The Shipping News (Miramax), The Core(Paramount), The Exorcism Of Emily Rose (Sony Pictures), andUntraceable (Paramount).
Kostas has been awarded for “Best Original Music” at Bare Bone International Film Festival and “Best Impact Of Music” at Park City Film Music Festival for his work in the film “29 Reasons To Run”
He has also received, the “Best Original Score” award at the “Greek State Film Awards 2006″ for his work in the German-Greek production “Eduart”.
PAST MUSIC DIRECTORS.
IYJA MUSIC DIRECTOR (2007-2008)
Cosima Luther began playing the violin at the age of 5. She began performing two years later at the Colorado Renaissance Festival, where she was involved with for seven seasons. A versatile musician, Luther can perform Scottish, Irish, Cape Breton, Shetland, Appalachian, Swing, Country and Bluegrass music in addition to her classical training. Ms. Luther has performed in Canada, France and Germany.
Cosima Luther went to high school at the Denver School of the Arts where she served as concertmistress of the DSA Orchestra. She has also performed with the Colorado Youth Symphony Orchestra, the Denver Young Artists Orchestra, and the Colorado Youth Sinfonia. In 2002 and 2003, she studied under Carol Cowan at the Aspen Music Festival. In 2004, Ms. Luther studied in Heidelberg, Germany through the Pepperdine Chamber Music Program.
In 1999, Luther co-founded Rocky Mountain Fiddle Camp (RMFC) with her father and brother, a popular summer music festival featuring students and artists from around the world. To date, Luther continues to manage the RMFC, along with her teaching duties there.
A pupil of Mitchell Newman, Sara Banta, Lisa Dondlinger, and Tony Cason, Cosima Luther received her BA in 2006 from Pepperdine University, where she served as concertmistress of the Pepperdine Symphony Orchestra and a member of the Pi Beta Phi sorority. Luther studied under Eudice Shapiro, Suli Xue, and Larry Livingston and USC where she earned her Masters degree.
IYCA MUSIC DIRECTOR (2007-2008)
Josh Roach was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona. He moved to California to study music performance, conducting, composition, and scoring for motion pictures and television at the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music. While at the Thornton School, Josh worked under the tutelage of Los Angeles Philharmonic trumpeter Boyde Hood, conducting teacher and former Thornton Dean Larry Livingston, and composition teachers Rick Lesemann, Jack Smalley, and David Spear. In addition to his work at USC, Josh has also attended the Eastern Music Festival in Greensboro, North Carolina, attended California State’s “CSU Summer Arts” program in Fresno, and participated in the California Conducting Institute with John Farrer (Bakersfield Symphony), Donald Thulean (Spokane Symphony), and Daniel Lewis (Pasadena Symphony/USC Thornton Symphony). Josh currently enjoys a professional life full of diversity, allowing him to use his talents as a conductor, trumpet player, composer/arranger, film music editor, music educator, and administrator. As a freelance musician, conductor, and educator, Josh has worked with Turner Classic Films, DreamWorks Pictures, PBS, the University of Arkansas Fort Smith, the United States Air Force Heartland of America Band Brass in Blue, Thornton Symphony, Phoenix Symphony Youth Guild, Paradise Valley (AZ) school district, Scottsdale (AZ) Community College, Mesa (AZ) Community College, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Phoenix Symphony, Los Angeles Jewish Symphony, and various recording studio orchestras in Los Angeles. As an administrator, Josh currently serves as the personnel/ensemble manager for the University of Southern California’s Thornton Symphony and Chamber Orchestras, working with musicians such as Larry Livingston, Carl St. Clair, Midori Goto, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Andre Watts, Thomas Ades, Shelly Berg, Patrice Rushen, Lamont Dozier, the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association and John Williams.
Joslynne Blasdel received her Bachelor of Music Degree and Teaching Credential from California State University Long Beach and Master of Arts Degree from the American Band College at Southern Oregon University. She has been teaching Instrumental Music at WHS for nineteen years, and has been honored as Teacher of the Year for the Irvine Unified School District. She has over 400 students in her award winning program and was recently appointed department chair for the WHS Fine and Performing Arts Department. In addition to her responsibilities at WHS, she is an active member of C.B.D.A., C.M.E.A., C.O.D.A., I.A.J.E., C.A.D.T.D., M.E.N.C. A.S.T.A. and S.C.S.B.O.A. where she served a two-year term as vice-president of High School Honor Groups. Miss Blasdel continues to perform on french horn and percussion as well as guest conduct for many Southern California music productions.
IYCA GUEST CONDUCTOR (2008)
Dr. Hickman received a Ph.D. in Music Literature from U.C. Berkeley in 1979, and has taught in the music departments at the University of Hawaii, U.C. Irvine, and C.S.U. Long Beach. During that time, he has been active as a performer, music educator, and writer.
He currently serves as the music director for the Los Angeles Classical Ballet and the Four Seasons Symphony. As a ballet conductor, Dr. Hickman has given numerous performances in the region over the last fifteen years, including the American debut of the Guangzhou Ballet, the first Chinese company to perform Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker in the United States. In addition to the Four Seasons Orchestra, he has conducted several other local professional orchestras, including the Irvine Symphony and the Hollywood Symphony, which enjoyed several successful concert tours to Taiwan. Dr. Hickman has also been invited to perform as guest conductor with the San Diego Symphony, the Chicago Pops, and an international orchestra and chorus for a performance of Carl Orff’s Carmina burana at the Sydney Opera House.
In 1994, Dr. Hickman established one of the premiere youth symphonies in Southern California, La Primavera. The group won a gold medal in an international music competition held at the Sydney Opera House in 1996 and has traveled extensively, performing in Vienna, Budapest, Prague, Antibes, Venice, Florence, Rome, Beijing, Shanghai, and New York (Carnegie Hall). Based on his work with young musicians, the Los Angeles Times named him “Arts Volunteer of the Year” in 1998, and the Orange County Board of Education honored him as “Educator of the Year” in 2008. In addition to working with youth orchestras, Dr. Hickman has been an active clinician and adjudicator and, between 1999 and 2001, served as the Vice President of String Education for the Southern California School Band and Orchestra Association.
Dr. Hickman has written a book entitled Reel Music: Exploring 100 Years of Film Music, which was published by W.W. Norton, Inc. in 2006. He has also authored four articles in the prestigious New Grove Dictionary of Music, published several editions of symphonies and string quartets, contributed to two prominent college music textbooks (The History of Western Music and The Enjoyment of Music, published by Norton), and is currently working on a book for Scarecrow Press dealing with Miklós Rózsa’s music for the epic film Ben Hur.
IYCA GUEST CONDUCTOR (2011-12)
Mario Miragliotta was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Son of Italian and Japanese immigrants, he came to the U.S. in 1990 to further his musical knowledge.
Mr. Miragliotta was a rising young conductor when a car accident left him paralyzed and hospitalized for two-and-a-half months. Relying on his sheer determination and love for music, he successfully conducted the American Youth Symphony at Royce Hall from a wheelchair a mere seven months after his injury to a standing ovation.
This past Summer he was invited to guest conduct in Mallorca, Spain. The performance took place at Castle Bellver, a 14th century castle built in the Gothic syle. Orchestra members and the audience were deeply touched and expressed that the performance level achieved by the orchestra was a highlight during the organization’s history.
Renowned conductor Sergiu Commissiona, called him a “Natural talent, who explores the depths of music… an exceptionally and naturally gifted conductor.”
David Zinman, Music Director of the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich finds Mr. Miragliotta to be “…very gifted and talented. On the podium Mario is very confident and has clear interpretative ideas, which enable him to transmit his ideas of style, sound, balance and phrase. His excitement and passion for music inspires musicians as well.”
Larry Livingston, Music Director of the Thorton Symphony calls Mario “…a miracle incarnate. His beautiful conducting and deep spirit are an inspiration to everyone.”
Mr. Miragliotta has appeared as a guest with some of best youth and professional orchestras in the country and abroad: Orquestra Simfonica del Conservatori Superior de Musica de les Illes Balears (Spain), Aspen Festival Orchestra (invited by David Zinman), American Youth Symphony (Royce Hall, Los Angeles), Interlochen Center for the Arts Orchestra, San Diego Unified Honor’s Orchestra (Copley Symphony Hall), Cabbrillo Chamber Orchestra (with Fred Benedetti), Sinfonia Cultura (Sao Paulo, Brazil).
He has also served as Music Director of the Classics 4 Kids Philharmonic, Santa Barbara Youth Symphony, and University of Southern California Community Orchestra; resident conductor and teacher at the Idyllwild Arts Academy; associate conductor of the Colburn Chamber Orchestra, and Disney’s Young Musician Symphony Orchestra, assistant conductor of the USC Thorton Symphony, and teacher at the Idyllwild Summer Festival Orchestra and Tatui Encontros, Brazil.