The Fresno Summer Orchestra Academy (FOOSA), a project of Youth Orchestras of Fresno (YOOF) and Fresno State’s Department of Music, is holding its two-week intensive program June 10-24, on the Fresno State campus. The program centers around the FOOSA Philharmonic, a selective pre-professional level orchestra that provides graduate school, college and high school musicians the opportunity to learn from and work alongside professionals and faculty members.

“Our FOOSA tagline is ‘bringing the world to Fresno and Fresno to the world,’ and that is truly central to what we do,” said Julia Copeland, executive director for FOOSA and YOOF.

FOOSA Strings childrenThe two-week program will also offer a half-day, pre-college program with FOOSA Strings for younger and/or less advanced players. Those participating in each of the programs will experience daily orchestra rehearsals, lessons, individual practice and master classes.

More than 200 students and nearly 30 faculty from Germany, Italy, Asia and across the U.S. participate in the festival.

“We bring in internationally acclaimed teaching artists from conservatories and orchestras around the world — including those here in the Central Valley,” Copeland said. “Our students are also internationally representative, coming, like our faculty, from prestigious music schools around the world — but a large number of our students are from right here in the Central Valley.”

Under the guidance of Dr. Thomas Loewenheim, FOOSA artistic director, professor of cello and director of the Fresno State Symphony Orchestra, participants will perform from the categories of violin, viola, cello, bass, flute, oboe, English horn, clarinet, bassoon, French horn, trumpet, trombone, tuba and percussion. For the half-day string program, young players will perform in violin, viola, cello and double bass.

The advanced FOOSA Philharmonic group will tour to perform at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles on Friday, June 22, where graduate composition student, Mason Lamb, has written a new work titled “Solstice” to premiere for the occasion.

Also, members of the FOOSA Philharmonic will have the opportunity to participate in the FOOSA Concerto Competition, the winner of which performs as a soloist with the FOOSA Philharmonic at the culminating concert on Sunday, June 24.

The FOOSA Festival will include performances by students and faculty beginning June 14:

  • Student Showcase #1
    • Thursday, June 14 from 8-10 p.m.
    • Located in the Fresno State Concert Hall
  • Concerto Competition Finals
    • Friday, June 15 from 8-10 p.m.
    • Located in the Fresno State Concert Hall
  • Faculty Concert
    • Saturday, June 16 from 8-10 p.m.
    • Located in the Fresno State Concert Hall
  • Student Showcase #2
    • Monday, June 18 from 8-10 p.m.
    • Located in the Fresno State Concert Hall
  • Student Showcase #3
    • Tuesday, June 19 from 8-10 p.m.
    • Located in the Fresno State Concert Hall
  • Student Showcase #4
    • Wednesday, June 20 from 8-10 p.m.
    • Located in the Fresno State Concert Hall
  • Casella and Strauss at Disney Hall, Los Angeles
  • Finale at People’s Church

For a more detailed list of events, click here.

All concerts are free as part of FOOSA’s mission to give back to the community.

For more information about applying to perform as part of the FOOSA Philharmonic, click here.

~Photos above courtesy of FOOSA