Thursday, June 11
In This Issue...

  • Mr. Edmons' Message
  • SDYS 2020 Conservatory Virtual Celebration
  • Brenna is Back!
  • SDYS Youth Leadership Student Council
  • This Week in Music History
  • Student Interview with Helen Zhu, Ovation Flutist
  • General Information, Other Events, and Opportunities
Mr. Edmons' Message

Dear SDYS Musicians and Families,

I hope that you are all doing well and comfortable at home.  

As our 2019-2020 season comes to a close, I wanted to share with you my deepest appreciation and admiration to every student in SDYS for your incredible dedication, talent, and all of your outstanding achievements together. Our final weekly Zoom meetings at all ensemble levels last weekend were a beautiful testament to the power of music to inspire and unite all of us in the celebration of music and music education. You are truly an inspiration to us all and I am so proud of you! Because of you, the joy and beauty of music has continued to grow and flourish each week at SDYS throughout the season and during our months at home. To all of the SDYS parents, thank you again for your incredible support and for the trust that you have given us to be your partners in music education this season. Please remember to join us for our exciting End of Year Celebration event on Saturday, June 13 at 2pm where beautiful music through the collective talent of all of our SDYS musicians will truly shine!

Thank you all again so much for the joy and inspiration you have brought to all of us and to SDYS during this incredible 2019-2020 this Season together.

With Very Best Wishes,

Mr. Edmons
Music Director
SDYS 2020 Conservatory Virtual Celebration
Saturday, June 13 @ 2:00 pm

Please join us for our final 2020 Conservatory Virtual Celebration, highlighting the outstanding accomplishments of our SDYS Conservatory students. The program includes video compilations from our 13 ensembles, selected original student compositions, a tribute to graduating seniors, and more...including some special surprises!

Tune in this Saturday at 2:00 pm! Please see the following link to join us:

We can't wait to celebrate all of our SDYS students' successes and creative collaborations. See you on Saturday!
Brenna is Back!

Conservatory Program Coordinator, Brenna Casey, is back from maternity leave. Congratulations on your happy and healthy baby, Brenna!
*NEW* SDYS Youth Leadership Council

The SDYS Youth Leadership Council is a youth-led group of SDYS musicians who want to get more involved, connect with other SDYS musicians, and contribute positively to the future of SDYS.

Participants must have parent/guardian permission to join.

Students will be joining a group, monitored by SDYS staff at all times. Invitations will be sent directly to student's email following submission of this form:

Please see to review the online safety measures we are following for this group and all other online interactions.

Thank you for your interest in this new SDYS youth-led initiative!

Lauren Rausch, Conservatory Program Manager
Kaitlyn Korogy, Community Program Manager
Ellie Lee, SDYS Youth Leader
Noor Alramadan, SDYS Youth Leader
This Week in Music History
Student Interview with Helen Zhu, Ovation Flutist

How long have you been playing the flute? 
8 years!

How long have you been at SDYS?
7 years...I am old.

Despite everything that has happened, what were some of the highlights of your senior year? 
Eating lunch with my friends in the chem classroom tops most things, but all the casual discussions in my literature and psychology class and struggling to play piccolo in the school musical are close seconds.

Congratulations on graduating high school! Where are you going to college and what is your major? 
Thank you so much :D I'm going to UC Berkeley undecided.

Congratulations on your admittance to UC Berkeley! What topics interest you?
I’m undecided because I want to do more exploring. For now, I know I enjoy making things and coming up with original ideas as well as problem solving and puzzles, so that could mean a job in computer science, but economics, data science, and cognitive science seem to fit those interests as well. I also want to teach high school math at some point in my life, so a degree in education is also on the table. The TLDR [too long; didn't read] is that ... I hope my future will be as fulfilling as possible.

Will fall 2020 classes look like for you? Will you live in Berkeley?
I'm excited and anxious to say that classes will be hybrid, and I will be living on campus.

Do you want to keep music in your life in the future? If so, how do you plan to do that? 
Definitely! For college, I plan on joining the music department at Berkeley. Whether I pursue a degree or just partake in ensembles is still to be decided. When I’m out of college, I want to have a small (like 3 kids max) private flute studio. My final hope is to be invited to play at all of my friends' weddings and get gigs every now and then because of my brilliant wedding performances.

Do you have any advice for younger students on applying for colleges? 
Before I started writing my apps, a friend from SDYS said to just go to a nice place like a coffee shop and think about all the times in high school that made me happy or feel good about myself. For some reason I never did that and that was my biggest mistake. Instead, I kept fixating on my mistakes, consequently making the first part of senior year way more stressful than it should’ve been. So to anyone about to apply to college, be proud of yourself; the good and the bad. Acknowledge how hard you worked and cherish all the good times you had. Best of luck to you all!

Is there anything else you’d like to add?
I really miss everyone, and I hope everyone’s staying safe.

Thank you for the great interview, Helen! SDYS wishes you all the best in your future.
Register Now for ChIMES@Home Summer 2020 Session
Monday June 22 – Friday August 14
Cost: $125 per family

This 8-week session is for parents/caregivers and children ages 0-5 (and any other members of your household that would like to join in the fun too!)

You and your child will share meaningful music-making experiences together at home. Interactive LIVE classes and creative videos will have you singing, dancing, playing instruments and learning new skills!

Session includes:

  • 2 live-streaming classes each week 
  • New video posted every week, plus at-home musical activities, tips and resources
  • 1 Instrument Kit per family 
  • On-demand access to all ChIMES videos and live class recordings 
  • 1 live “ChIMES Check-In” session


The SDYS office is closed, and all rehearsals in Balboa Park are suspended until further notice. Staff are available via email and are working to provide opportunities for students to learn remotely. We are continuing to evaluate this fluid situation and will contact you regarding program updates. Please visit for any new information.

Educational Resources

Learn more about programs for preparing for college, summer intensive study, conservatory and collegiate opportunities from our promotional partners.
General Information, Other Events, and Opportunities

The events listed below are for information only. They are not sponsored or evaluated by, and do not have a connection with SDYS. Musicians are not allowed to exceed the maximum permitted absences according to the Musician's Handbook by participating in any events listed below.

As a courtesy reminder, please respect the privacy of all students and families. Please do not use emails from SDYS to send personal messages to other students or families.
Anna Sharp
Conservatory Program Assistant
Financial Support Provided by the City of San Diego.
This activity is supported in part by the California Arts Council, a state agency.
Learn more at