Music Academy fellows performed for a live audience on June 15, 2017 at Hahn Hall. Photo: From The Top

Music Academy fellows performed for a live audience on June 15, 2017 at Hahn Hall. Photo: From The Top

Santa Barbara, CA — Fellows from the Music Academy of the West will appear on an upcoming episode of From the Top, the hit NPR radio program featuring America’s best young classical musicians and hosted by acclaimed pianist Christopher O’Riley. The show will feature performances and interviews with fellows of the Music Academy and a world premiere by composer Conrad Tao. It will air nationally the week of October 2 and in Southern California on KUSC, Sunday October 8 at 6PM, and is available for streaming and podcast at The episode was taped before a live audience June 15, 2017 at Hahn Hall in Santa Barbara, presented by the Music Academy of the West.

Featured on the broadcast

20-year-old 2017 solo piano fellow Michael Davidman from New York, New York performing I. Allegro agitato from Rachmaninoff’s Piano Sonata No. 2 and “Vissi d'arte” from Act II of the Opera Tosca, by Giacomo Puccini; 20-year-old 2017 oboe fellow Tanavi Prabhu from Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania performing I. Elégie from the Sonata for Oboe and Piano by Francis Poulenc; 19-year-old 2017 violin fellow Daniel Kim from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania performing Introduction and Tarantella, Op. 43 by Pablo de Sarasate; and 20-year-old 2017 cello fellow David Bender from Franklin, Tennessee performing III. Rasch und mit Feuer from Schumann’s Fantasiestücke, Op.73.

The world premiere of “Asymptotes” by composer Conrad Tao is performed by 2017 viola fellow Erin Pitts; 2017 clarinet fellow Arianna Beyer; and pianist Christopher O’Riley. The performance of “Asymptotes” is part of From the Top’s New Music Series, which shares the beauty and power of contemporary American music as performed – and in some cases, composed – by exceptional pre-collegiate classically-trained musicians. Support for year one of the New Music Series is provided by the Aaron Copland Fund for Music.

To download high resolution photos of the June 15 taping, photo credit From The Top, please click here.


About From the Top

From the Top is America’s largest national platform celebrating the stories, talents, and character of classically-trained young musicians. Through live events, NPR and YouTube broadcasts, scholarships, and leadership programs, From the Top empowers these extraordinary young people to engage and inspire music lovers of all ages. Support for From the Top’s radio program is made possible through grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation. It is also supported through the generous contributions of individuals and institutions as well as public radio stations. From the Top’s founding partners are New England Conservatory and WGBH.  From the Top is an independent non-profit organization proudly based in Boston’s vibrant cultural district.  Learn more at


About the Music Academy of the West
The Music Academy of the West is among the nation’s preeminent summer schools and festivals for gifted, young, classically-trained musicians. At its ocean-side campus in Santa Barbara, the Academy provides these musicians with the opportunity for advanced study and performance under the guidance of internationally renowned faculty artists, guest conductors, and soloists. Admission to the Academy is strictly merit based, and fellows receive full scholarships (tuition, room, and board). The Academy’s distinguished teaching artists roster has included famed soprano Lotte Lehmann, composers Darius Milhaud and Arnold Schoenberg, cellist Gregor Piatigorsky, pianist Jeremy Denk, and current Voice Program Director Marilyn Horne. Academy alumni are members of major symphony orchestras, chamber orchestras, ensembles, opera companies, and university and conservatory faculties throughout the world. Many enjoy careers as prominent solo artists. In 2014 the Music Academy entered into a four-year partnership with the New York Philharmonic, resulting in unprecedented training and performance opportunities for Academy fellows, and Summer Festival residencies for Philharmonic musicians. The Music Academy of the West cultivates discerning, appreciative, and adventurous audiences, presenting more than 200 public events annually, many free of charge. These include performances by faculty, guest artists, and fellows; masterclasses; orchestra and chamber music concerts; and a fully staged opera. The Music Academy celebrated its 70th Anniversary during the 2017 Summer School and Festival from June 12 to August 5 at the Academy’s scenic Miraflores campus and in venues throughout Santa Barbara. For more information, visit


Released: September 28, 2017

Music Academy of the West contact:

Kate Oberjat

Director of Marketing and Communications

Music Academy of the West



From the Top program contact:

Erin MacCurtain
617-437-0707 x103

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