Celebrated conductor visits Alhambra Honor String Orchestra


Renowned conductor and violinist Dr. Yvette Devereaux visited the Alhambra Middle School Honor String Orchestra in February and conducted a clinic for the student musicians, bringing her own compositions and arrangements. Her conducting career is widespread and includes appearances at Carnegie Hall, the Conductors Guild Institute, Juilliard, and the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.


“The students greatly benefitted from her presence and experience as an outstanding violinist, performer, educator, and conductor, who is devoted to helping young people develop their talents and gain exposure to the arts,” said Janet Jones, director of the orchestra.


As a violinist, Dr. Devereaux has performed and recorded in both jazz and classical groups, as well as with prominent pop artists. She was a regular member of the Gerald Wilson Jazz Orchestra and performed and recorded with Nancy Wilson, Stevie Wonder, Herbie Hancock, Natalie Cole, John Clayton, Celine Dion, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, and Alicia Keys, among others. Dr. Devereaux is also an active advocate for music education, and contributes much of her time to helping students in underprivileged communities, as well as throughout the United States, to gain musical exposure and experience. 


Dr. Devereaux earned a masters degree in music from the Peabody Conservatory of Music (John Hopkins University) and her bachelors degree from Chapman University. She holds a doctorate in philosophy from Felton University. Dr. Devereaux currently teaches private students and classes at the South Pasadena Music Center and Conservatory.


The Alhambra Middle School Honor String Orchestra is comprised of dedicated string students from the 13 elementary/middle schools in the Alhambra Unified School District, who meet as an ensemble once a week. These students have been playing their instruments from two to five years or more. They will perform a concert in the spring at Alhambra High School auditorium, along with the Middle School Honor Band, directed by Dave Batti, and the Alhambra High School Stage Jazz band, directed by Mark Trulson. This year the spring concert will be on Thursday, May 7 at 7:00 p.m.


“We were indeed honored to have Dr. Devereaux visit our Honor Orchestra and offer her time, expertise, and music. Since we also enjoy learning and playing a variety of musical styles, including jazz and improvisation, she was appreciated both as a jazz and classical violin virtuoso. It was a fun day for music,” Director Jones said.


Photo A: Dr. Yvette Devereaux conducts a clinic for the Alhambra Middle School Honor String Orchestra in February.


Photo B  L-R:  Dr. Yvette Devereaux, Orchestra Director Janet Jones, AHS students Lavinia Chen and Adam Russell. Lavinia and Adam help Director Jones with the orchestra.


Photo C: Dr. Yvette Devereaux has conducted at Carnegie Hall, Juilliard, and the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. 


(Posted 4/2015)