Skip to page content

2022 YOLA National Festival Applications are now open! Read below for application requirements, timeline, and more.

The YOLA National Festival is back in-person this summer at YOLA’s new home, the Beckmen YOLA Center.

An intensive summer orchestra festival with top-tier ensembles, the YOLA National Festival is for young musicians from Sistema-inspired programs and programs similarly invested in youth and community development through music.

Musicians will convene in Los Angeles from July 25 - August 3, 2022 for 10 days of learning with the festival’s amazing faculty, guest artists, and performances with world-renowned conductors. Participation is free—travel, lodging, meals, and programming are provided to musicians at no cost. The 2022 program will feature two ensembles: the Symphony Orchestra for musicians aged 14-18 and the Chamber Orchestra for musicians aged 12-14.

The festival’s purpose is to connect civically-minded young musicians from diverse regions across the country. Bringing together this community who share a common interest of achieving musical excellence serves as the nexus for the progressive future of music education while modeling the future of orchestral ensembles.

COVID-19 Update

Due to the ever-evolving COVID-19 pandemic’s continued effects, the full program and offerings of the 2022 YOLA National Festival will be announced on April 1, alongside audition results. The health and safety of our young musicians are our highest priorities, and our decisions will be dependent on guidance from the California Department of Public Health, the LA County Department of Public Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Please note, travel and in-person activities for the 2022 YOLA National Festival may be impacted by changes, orders or recommendations set forth by the California Department of Public Health, the LA County Department of Public Health and/or the CDC due to the severity of COVID-19 and/or any surge in cases or new variants. Any changes to the Festival schedule will be communicated ahead of time to all participants. The LA Phil reserves all rights to make changes to the Festival schedule and programming, and COVID-19 protocols at any time. 

In accordance with the LA Phil’s Vaccination Policy, all musicians, faculty, and staff participating in the YOLA National Festival will be required to be fully vaccinated and boosted if eligible. Fully vaccinated means two weeks have passed since receiving a second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or one dose of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. Boosters will be required for those eligible. Additionally, testing will be conducted at least once during the YOLA National Festival. 

YOLA National Festival applicants are recommended to submit proof of vaccination and booster dose via the Accepted application platform, but proof of vaccination will be required by June 1, 2022. While exemptions to vaccination can be accepted, it is very rare for them to be approved and are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Proof of vaccination, and booster dose if eligible, will be required by June 1, 2022.

Application Information & Timeline

Your application involves these core components:  

  1. To begin: Create an account or log in to the Acceptd platform via the Apply Now link

  2. Fill out the application which includes parent/guardian information, educational, and musical background

  3. Upload your musical audition (2-3 excerpts and scales) and personal statement videos*

  4. Submit a recommendation from a program manager or teacher

  5. Upload the required consent forms

*Instrument specific excerpts and details about the personal statement are available on our Audition Requirements page.

 

 All applications are submitted through the Acceptd platform:

Apply Now

Applications due FEB 15
Questions? yola@laphil.org

 

Once you have created your login on our application platform Acceptd, we suggest you download the application checklist linked in the Application Materials list below, begin practicing your required excerpts, and be sure to get support from a teaching artist or program manager for your musical audition and your personal statement.

Application Timeline

January 9: YNF Virtual Seminario
January 23: YNF Virtual Seminario
February 15: Applications close
February 21: Recommendation Due
April 1: Notification distributed to applicants / YOLA National Institute (YNI) applications open to select musicians of the YOLA National Symphony Orchestra
April 15: YOLA National Institute (YNI) Applications close
May 11: YNI Student Notification
July 25–August 3: YOLA National Festival

Eligibility Requirements

Young musicians applying for the YOLA National Festival must meet the program and age requirements in order to participate in the YOLA National Festival. 

Program Requirements

All applicants must be enrolled in an El Sistema-inspired program, or a program that is similarly invested in youth development practices. While each program operates differently, there are basic tenets which this Festival aims to support.

For full details about program eligibility, please download our Eligibility PDF. If you have any questions about whether your music learning program meets eligibility requirements, please email us at YOLA@laphil.org.

Symphony Orchestra

High school musicians between the ages 14-18 can apply to the Symphony Orchestra. Excerpts for the Symphony Orchestra can be found on our Audition Requirements page. Applicants who are 14 years old and apply to the Symphony Orchestra will automatically be considered for the Chamber Orchestra. 

Chamber Orchestra

Musicians aged 12-14 can apply to the Chamber Orchestra. Musicians who are 14 years old can either apply for the Symphony Orchestra to be considered for both Chamber and Symphony Orchestra or choose to apply only for the Chamber Orchestra. Excerpts for the Chamber Orchestra can be found on our Audition Requirements pageAll applicants should only submit one application, with one set of excerpts.

YOLA National Festival Staff

Conductors

Gustavo Dudamel
Music & Artistic Director, Los Angeles Philharmonic

Additional conducting faculty will be announced as confirmed

 

Faculty

Flute 

Jennifer Grim, University of Miami, Associate Professor of Flute  

Oboe 

Claire Brazeau, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Principal Oboe; California State University Long Beach, Bob Cole Conservatory of Music, Oboe Faculty 

Clarinet 

Mariam AdamChineke Orchestra and Chamber Ensemble, Principal Clarinet; International Soloist and musician 

Bassoon 

Lecolion Washington, Community Music Center of Boston, Executive Director 

French Horn 

Annie BoslerUniversity of California Irvine, Lecturer, French Horn; El Camino College, Applied Music Instructor 

Trumpet 

Herb Smith, Rochester Philharmonic

Trombone 

Burt Mason, Chamber Orchestra of New York, Principal Trombone, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Associate Musician, Juilliard Music Advancement Program, Trombone and Low Brass Instructor

Percussion 

Ruben Hernandez, San Diego Youth Symphony, OPUS, Teaching Artist 

Violin 

Mariesther AlvarezBoston String Academy, Director, Violin Faculty; Longy School of Music of Bard College, Teacher Education 

Simon Bernardini, Berliner Philharmoniker 

Mellasenah Edwards, Baltimore School for the Arts, Music Department Head 

Benjamin HoffmanRedlands Symphony, Principal Second Violin; Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra 

Cosima Luther, YOLA at EXPO, Violin Teaching Artist 

Lauren Rausch, John Hopkins Peabody Preparatory, Director, Young People's String Program & Coordinator, Tuned-In Program 

Tiffany Rice, The Windsor School, Boston, MA, Director of Performing Arts and Music Faculty 

Viola 

Chris Jenkins, Oberlin Conservatory, Associate Dean and Liaison to the Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion 

James WoomertAtholton High School, Columbia, MD, Director of Orchestras 

Cello 

Troy StuartJohn Hopkins Peabody Preparatory, Cello & Chamber Music Faculty 

Terrence ThornhillPaterson Music Project, NJ, Teaching Artist; Northern New Jersey Youth Orchestra, Assistant Conductor

Bass 

David Connor, Houston Symphony Orchestra - Community Embedded Musician 

Chantal Incandela, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Press & Communications Manager

More about YOLA National

For a full list of FAQ’s, please see the FAQ document linked in the above Student Application Materials section. If you have any further questions, please email YOLA@laphil.org.