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San Diego Youth Symphony is proud to spearhead a special project, featuring an important message, on behalf of the San Diego region’s music education community.

Before the pandemic, SDYS commissioned nationally acclaimed composer Brian Balmages to write a new piece of music that would be premiered by our Inspiration level string groups in March of 2021. The final work, which Brian wrote just as the pandemic was beginning, reflected his own personal struggle to find meaning in music in the face of a global pandemic. And the result, an inspiring work called “(You Are) Amazing” is his response.

Click Here to Watch the Premiere of (You Are) Amazing on YouTube

Brian recognized that every child, across the world, was being impacted. He also knew that his music could provide solace and meaning for them. When young people play this music, he wants them to know that their teachers, their musical family, and the entire music education community would be there to support them…not just at that moment, but for tomorrow and every day after.

Brain BalmagesWhen SDYS received “(You Are) Amazing”, we knew that this special music could be a force to bring our community together. We decided to have every string student in SDYS perform the work to amplify Brian’s message. But we also invited students and teachers from across San Diego and Tijuana to get involved. SDYS is proud to collaborate with teachers and students from All About Music, Civic Youth Orchestra, East County Youth Symphony, Fortissimo, La Jolla Music Society’s Community Music Center, Sinfónica Juvenil de Tijuana, Villa Musica, and some very special guests to virtually perform this special work, share the message that music education matters more than ever, and tell San Diego that our music education community stands ready to do its part after this life-changing year.

Join us for the exciting world premiere video of “(You Are) Amazing” featuring almost 350 young people in performance from across the San Diego region.  

Help us celebrate music education across our community!

Please consider sharing our video to your social media channels.


San Diego Youth Symphony