Mar. 25, 2020: The Reno Phil Announces Winner of The Oscar J. Fox Scholarship Award


RENO, Nev. (March 25, 2020) – In remembrance of Reno’s former Mayor, Bob Cashell, the Reno Phil is presenting a very special scholarship, created by Cashell, in honor of his grandfather and composer, Oscar J. Fox. This year’s Oscar J. Fox Scholarship Award goes to Reno Phil Youth Orchestra (RPYO) member, Benjamin Vandevert.

“The Reno Phil Youth Orchestra is very proud to present this award to a young musician in the making,” said Jason Altieri, Conductor of the Youth Symphony Orchestra. “I love watching our young musicians light with their involvement with the community.”

Benjamin Vandevert is a Sophomore in high school. He is homeschooled and takes classes through the Jump Start Program at TMCC. Ben has participated in RPYO for 8 years, and has enjoyed traveling with YSO to Carnegie Hall, Davies Hall, and Disney Hall. He is a regular participant in the RPYO concerto competition. Ben is a founding member of quartet Abandonné and is a member of Mariachi Los Pochos. He has played the violin for 11 years, and uniquely among his peers, enjoys scales. Ben looks forward to having his own private studio and continuing in his musical career.

Profound champions of the arts in the Reno community, Cashell and his wife, Nancy, established this award in 2013 in memory of Oscar J. Fox. He was a thoughtful leader in Reno’s music community at the turn of the 19th century, and published over 50 songs, the most famous being “The Hills of Home.”

This award is intended to help Reno Phil Youth Orchestra members further their musical education during the summer, in the orchestra’s off-season. Students may choose any regional summer music festival that intrigues them, with options ranging from traditional orchestral and chamber music to world music, contemporary performance, and jazz. Each year, one youth orchestra member is granted this scholarship and receive up to $2,000 to attend a summer music program of their choice.

“One of the best ways to encourage continual music education at a young age is through participation in this immersive summer program,” said Laura Jackson, Music Director and Conductor.