With support from the New York State Council on the Arts, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra is pleased to invite applications for two (2) fellowship positions for pre-professional musicians from underrepresented communities for each calendar year.

Designed to build skills and industry knowledge vital to a 21st-century career in the arts, the program will provide exposure and training across the core operating functions of a professional chamber orchestra. Fellows will receive support from the entire Orpheus team, and benefit from a unique combination of artistic and administrative experience, including:

  • Immersion in the Orpheus Process™, the distinct model which governs all aspects of the organization
  • Mentorship by dedicated Orpheus musician and Artistic Directors
  • Cross-departmental work experience, including marketing, development, artistic planning, education, and operations
  • Focused project in Orpheus program area; coordinated with fellow based on interest
  • Participation in rehearsals and artistic planning and board meetings
  • Funding and general support to self-present a recital in New York City
  • Other funding for career development expenses such as audition travel, instruction, and instrument repair/supplies

Total award stipend of $6,000 includes $2,500 for rehearsal participation and administrative hours for project work and departmental support plus a $3,500 career development fund towards recital development and other expenses. Applicants who do not yet have a professional career will be eligible; current students studying towards a bachelor’s or graduate degree are preferred.

Applications open in early December and close mid-January. Fellows will be announced late January, with the program slated to begin early February.

Gabrielle Skinner, Viola

Gabrielle Skinner is a violist and educator working primarily in Houston, Texas; New York City and New Haven, CT. A versatile and accomplished musician, she holds her bachelor’s degree from Cleveland Institute of Music and is expected to graduate with her master’s degree from Rice University in May 2018.


Gabrielle recently won the Harmony Fellowship with the New Haven Symphony where she will be performing with the symphony as well as working in the community and local schools. Along with that, Gabrielle is also working as a fellow with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. Ms. Skinner is passionate about teaching and is devoted to empowering young minds with the power of music. She has participated in programs dedicated to bringing relief to those in need at both the Cleveland Clinic and Texas Children’s Hospital. She is also an active member with the Sphinx Organization, a group dedicated to bringing diversity to the arts.


Gabrielle is educated in Suzuki Pedagogy and Viola Pedagogy and has maintained a private studio in addition to teaching at Cleveland School of the Arts and Rice University.  Gabrielle also enjoys freelance work; a recent highlight was performing with 2Cellos on their Texas tour showcasing their new album. Ms. Skinner has studied with leading viola pedagogues Kirsten Docter and Ivo van der Werff, both of whom have largely shaped who she is as a musician today.


Ms. Skinner has performed in masterclasses for Heidi Castleman, Jeffrey Irvine, Jutta Puchhammer-Sédillot, David Holland, Mark Jacobs, Sabina Thatcher and Roger Tapping. She has also performed in chamber music masterclasses for David Geber, Mark Steinberg, Cavani String Quartet, Miami String Quartet, Brooklyn Rider, American String Quartet and Jupiter Quartet. She has been a scholarship recipient to programs throughout the United States, earning fellowships to Aspen Music Festival, North American Viola institute, Meadowmount School of Music, and the Strings Music Festival.  In 2016, Gabrielle became a founding member of the Kamila Quartet, with whom she attended the Robert Mann Institute in January 2017. In her free time, Gabrielle enjoys playing chamber music, knitting, and watching cooking shows. Gabrielle plays a custom made 2012 viola by Geoffrey Ovington.

Where Are They Now? 

Learn about past Fellows and what they have been up to since their time at Orpheus.

Ian Tyson, clarinet

Ian is a New York City based clarinetist. He has performed with orchestras, chamber groups, and given solo recitals in such prestigious venues as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and Merkin Hall. He was previously a clarinetist with the United States Air Force bands, performing with the concert band, woodwind quintet, clarinet quartet and Dixie band. A champion of new music, Ian recently commissioned the piece Crystal Cathedral from composer Leanna Primiani. Also a dedicated pedagogue, Ian teaches clarinet at New York Conservatory of Music and Arts and also maintains a substantial private studio. He has performed and given master classes throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, and Africa. As a teaching artist with Daraja Music Initiative, he works in Tanzania teaching students to play the clarinet and helping to conserve the African Blackwood tree. Ian received a DMA from Stony Brook University, MM from Michigan State University, and BM from Miami University (OH). His principal teachers include Alan Kay, Anthony McGill, Frank Ell, and Michele Gingras.


Khari Joyner, cello

Quickly emerging as one of the leading cellists of his generation, Khari has a following both nationally and abroad as a versatile soloist, chamber musician, and ambassador for the arts. He has performed with the Atlanta, Buffalo, New World, New Jersey, and Sphinx Symphonies, and has collaborated with artists ranging from Magnus Lindberg, Barbara Hannigan, and Hubert Laws. Some of his most recent accomplishments include his being awarded a career grant from the Leonore Annenberg Fellowship for the Performing and Visual Arts, the William Schuman Prize for outstanding achievement and leadership in music at Juilliard’s 109th Commencement ceremony, winning first prizes in the Juilliard Concerto Competition and 12th Annual Sphinx Competition, and giving a private performance in the Oval Office for President Obama. He is currently completing his candidacy as a C.V. Starr Doctoral Fellow of Juilliard’s prestigious Doctor of Musical Arts program. In addition to concertizing, Joyner serves as Teaching Assistant to his former teacher Joel Krosnick, and also pursued a mathematics concentration in an exchange program with Columbia University, while studying in Juilliard’s Accelerated BM/MM program.

Celia Hatton, viola

Immediately following her Fellowship, Hatton toured with Orpheus Chamber Orchestra throughout Japan and performed at their 2016 Annual Gala event. She begins her 2016-17 season with performances in Richmond with Orpheus member, James Wilson, for the Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia. She then begins a six week national tour with conductorless chamber orchestra Sphinx Virtuosi. As an Honorary Ambassador to the city of Chuncheon, she will return to South Korea for the fourth time, performing chamber music for the New York in Chuncheon festival. Hatton will then serve as Assistant Principal in the Santo Domingo Festival Orchestra in the Dominican Republic. In addition to performing, Hatton and cellist Natasha Brofsky manage Music for Food, a charity chamber music concert series that donates 100% of ticket sale proceeds to Broadway Community, a program that provides meals, showers, and shelter for those in need in New York City.

Alexander Davis, bassoon

Just before finishing the Orchestral Program at Manhattan School of Music and the Orpheus Fellowship in May, Alexander was chosen to be the new fellow with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Beginning Fall of 2016, Alexander performed with the Detroit Symphony under the direction of Leonard Slatkin and Bob Williams through their African American Orchestral Fellowship Program.