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Young Artist Award


Fulcrum Arts is proud to honor two outstanding high school musicians with our 2019 Young Artist Award in Music. This year two students were each given a $1,000 scholarship in recognition of their accomplishments in music, in support of their future endeavors.

Jeffrey Arrendondo
Nominated by the Scholarship Audition Performance Preparatory Academy

“Music has had such a great and positive impact on my life and my involvement with music has truly shaped who I am. I started playing the violin at the age of 6, and at that age I didn’t understand what it was to be a musician. I would show up to classes to just play the notes and that would be all.  I didn’t like the idea of giving up my free time, and like any other kid I would rather play outside or watch T.V. Be that as it may, now that I’m older I understand that music is so much more than just playing notes. Music to me is a way of letting go; it is a method of truly expressing myself in a way that I wouldn’t be able to do without it. However, this isn’t all that a life of music has given me. It has given me the opportunity to play and numerous venues including the Walt Disney Concert Hall and the STAPLES Center. Music has moved me all over California and given me the opportunity to meet so many amazing people. If I hadn’t started playing the violin all those years ago, I would be a completely person. Music has given me a purpose in life that I truly enjoy and if I had the chance to start all over, I would not change a thing.”

JR Santiago
Nominated by the Pasadena Conservatory of Music

“I am honored and so thankful to be one of the recipients of the Fulcrum Arts Award this year. I have been playing the flute since I was 13, and I currently attend Los Angeles County High School for the Arts. I have been a member of the Claremont Youth Orchestra, a finalist in the Mondavi National Young Artists Competition, and this summer I will be participating in Carnegie Hall’s National Youth Orchestra 2. 

Furthermore, I want to share what music means to me. Despite all the goals I have in mind and want to reach, music is so much more than what I want to accomplish for myself. Music and art in general is a selfless line of work, and it is all about sharing the product of all your hard work and sacrifices with your audience. Music to me is a vehicle of communication so much stronger than words, and it makes us feel something and can express something that words cannot explain. I think it’s especially striking that music brings people together, especially in performances or rehearsals with orchestras and bands. In that moment, they forget about their differences and focus on their common love for music. This all comes to show that music isn’t just sound waves; it’s an explosive expression of humanity, and something that we are all touched by. Simply put, music makes us more human.”

The Young Artist Award in Music is a legacy program of Pasadena Arts Council, and is made possible with support from the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts and Julie O’Reilly.