Emerging Artists Series

Crossroads School EMMI Chamber Orchestra and ensembles, Alexander Treger, conductor

February 4, 2024 | 6:00 PM

The Elizabeth Mandell Music Institute (EMMI) is a renowned high school music program. In addition to the outstanding college preparatory academic offerings at Crossroads, EMMI students study music theory, harmony, analysis, counterpoint, rhythm and ear training at the conservatory/college level. Chamber Orchestra classes meet twice a week and culminate in four annual concerts. Chamber Music classes also meet twice a week, and ensembles are coached by prominent Los Angeles musicians, culminating in two concerts a year. Solo recitals are presented monthly.

Students participate in master classes given by leading American and international artists. EMMI incorporates creative elements into the program, including improvisation, composition techniques and arrangement. As part of EMMI’s progressive curriculum, students attend cross-genre workshops throughout the year, including blues and jazz, Celtic styles and Carnatic music. In harmony with the Crossroads philosophy of developing each student’s full human potential, EMMI students attend symposiums on topics ranging from physical wellness and injury prevention to musical entrepreneurship for the 21st century. 

EMMI has performed at Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Bing Theater at USC and, most recently, at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Graduates of this outstanding program have gone on to prolific careers as concert masters, composers, opera singers and recording artists. 

The Institute was named in honor of the late Elizabeth Heller Mandell, a Crossroads grandmother and parent of alumni as well as a former Trustee of the School.

Alexander Treger, noted violinist, accomplished conductor, and gifted educator, was appointed Music Director of the American Youth Symphony in 1998. As the successor to Mehli Mehta, he is only the second conductor to lead the ensemble since it was founded by Mehta in 1964. Prior to being named Music Director of the American Youth Symphony, Treger guest-conducted the orchestra in 1994 and 1996. An inspiring teacher who enjoys working with promising young musicians, he has given numerous master classes around the world and held the position of Professor of Violin at UCLA for two decades, from 1977 to 1997.

A musician of many interests and talents, Treger has served as Concertmaster of the Los Angeles Philharmonic since 1985, although he continually devotes more of his time to conducting. He guest-conducted the Turku Philharmonic in Finland in 2001, 2002, and 2003, and stepped in at the last minute to conduct the Los Angeles Philharmonic, replacing the indisposed Franz Welser-Möst. He has also appeared as guest conductor with the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, California’s Music in the Mountains Festival Orchestra, the New World Symphony, and the Santa Monica Symphony. In addition, he served as the interim conductor of the UCLA Symphony in 1992 and was appointed the Music Director/Conductor of the Crossroads Chamber Orchestra in 1993, where he has developed a youth orchestra of the highest caliber.

Treger began his musical training at the age of five in his native Russia, where he studied violin and piano. By the age of thirteen, he had won numerous music competitions in his country, and was later chosen by the renowned violinist David Oistrakh to study at the prestigious Moscow Conservatory. He describes the six years he spent at the Conservatory being mentored by Mr. Oistrakh as “among the most influential on my development as a musician.” While a student there, he also took a great interest in conducting. After graduating, Treger became a member of the Moscow Radio Symphony and, subsequently, left Russia to become the Concertmaster/Soloist of the Israel Chamber Orchestra.

Treger arrived in the United States in 1973 and joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1974. He was appointed Assistant Concertmaster in 1978, promoted to Second Concertmaster two years later, and appointed Concertmaster in 1985, a position he still holds. Treger has won high praise for his numerous solo performances with the orchestra at the Music Center and the Hollywood Bowl, which have included concertos by Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Bartók, Mendelssohn, Sibelius, Shostakovich, and Prokofiev, under the direction of Zubin Mehta, Carlo Maria Giulini, Simon Rattle, Pierre Boulez, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Valery Gergiev, Yuri Temirkanov, and Esa-Pekka Salonen.

He has also appeared as soloist with a number of major U.S. orchestras, including the San Francisco, Denver, Dallas, and Houston Symphonies. An avid chamber performer, he has collaborated in concerts with such well-known artists as Radu Lupu, Yefim Bronfman, André Previn, Bernard Greenhouse, and Emanuel Ax.