THE ENTERTAINER & PERFORMER
Dr. Phoenix, born March 23 as Abel Phoenix Delgado, is an Interlochen Center for the Arts Academy alum, former soloist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at age 21 and one of People Magazine’s “Heroes Among Us.” He is a performer in every sense of the word, entertaining audiences with his muti-faceted career as a conductor, flautist, singer and dancer. But he is also a force in the field of Transformational Executive Leadership and is passionate about gay rights and advocacy.
He has been privileged to work with many notable celebrities and luminaries including: Kristin Chenoweth, Josh Groban, Michael Tilson Thomas, Barry Manilow, Michael Kamen, John Lithgow, Steven Spielberg, Tom Hanks, Chris Botti, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Jeanne Baxtresser, Jeffrey Khaner, Matthieu Dufour, Jim Walker, Gary Woodward, Carl St.Clair, Alan Silvestri, Lucas Richman, Miguel Harth-Bedoya and Michael York.
Dr. Phoenix has been featured in the August 2006 and November 2006 issues of People Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Confidential, Hoy, the Interlochen Arts Academy Crescendo Magazine, International Musician, CBS Early Show, Despierta America, Univision’s Orgullo Hispano, Primer Impacto, Mega TV, Eye on LA/Vista LA, KNX 1070 Newsradio and Hot 92 JAMZ. He has also been contacted by the producers of the Ellen DeGeneres Show and Oprah. To view a complete archive of all press materials, please visit the “Press” section.
After an incredibly selective and rigorous yearlong search process, Dr. Phoenix was named the new Music Director & Conductor of the New Valley Symphony Orchestra in the fall 2012 and served in that capacity until 2015. And most recently he served as the Music Director & Conductor for Broadway, film and television star, Kristin Chenoweth. His extensive experience also includes serving as guest conductor for the Chamber Ensemble of Rome, Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra, Bay Area Rainbow Symphony and Golden State Pops Orchestra. One time engagements have included leading the orchestra at the 2005 Grammy’s Salute to Classical Music honoring Esa-Pekka Salonen, conducting the orchestra for Merv Griffin’s memorial service, appearing with the USC Thornton Symphony and Chamber Orchestras, and serving as Assistant Conductor for the Pasadena Symphony, as well as, Michael Tilson Thomas at Disney Hall. He is the founder of Harmony Project’s Summer Festival Orchestras, the Harmony Project Orchestra, and the Hollywood Youth Orchestra. Furthermore, he formed the LA Philharmonic’s EXPO Center Youth Orchestra which has been conducted by Gustavo Dudamel at the Hollywood Bowl as part of Youth Orchestra LA (YOLA). Dr. Phoenix studied conducting with John Barnett, former Associate Conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and former Music Director & Conductor of the Hollywood Bowl.
In addition to his solo appearances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at age of 21, he has appeared, and continues to appear, with several orchestras in Southern California. He actively freelances in Los Angeles, is a performer of choice for high-profile events and celebrity weddings, and records for film, television and video games. His orchestral experience includes serving as the principal flautist of the El Paso Opera for nine seasons, the Cypress Pops Orchestra and the Golden State Pops Orchestra (GSPO). Dr. Phoenix studied flute with Jim Walker (former principal flautist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic), Gary Woodward (former principal flautist of the Los Angeles Opera), Tyra Gilb at the Interlochen Arts Academy and Pauline Gray in his hometown of Houston, TX. His childhood teachers included Charlotte Royall and Christy Lockhart.
THE SINGER & DANCER
THE MODEL & ATHLETE
THE TRANSFORMATIONAL EXECUTIVE LEADER
Presently Dr. Phoenix serves as an Assistant Dean for the USC Thornton School of Music. Prior to this, he served as the first Executive Director for The Harmony Project, a non-profit organization that continues to offer music education to underserved children. He was instrumental in the development and growth of this organization during his four years as Executive Director, attracting national media attention. After stepping down to pursue his position at USC, he remained involved as Music Director & Conductor. Recently the Harmony Project was presented with the Coming Up Taller Award, the nation’s highest honor for humanities programs, at the White House by First Lady Michelle Obama. As a result of his involvement in the non-profit sector, he is sought out as a motivational speaker and independent consultant to facilitate strategic planning by grassroots organizations.
He is also active on several boards including the Los Angeles Philanthropic Committee for the Arts as Vice President, Young Musicians Foundation board of advisors and Luminario Ballet.
THE TRAINING & EDUCATION
Dr. Phoenix received his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the University of Southern California (USC) Thornton School of Music in flute/vocal performance and orchestral conducting, respectively. Most recently, he completed his Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA) degree at USC Thornton in flute performance, with elective fields in conducting, theory & analysis, and transformational executive leadership.
He began his musical training with general public school recorder class at age 7, private piano at age 8, flute at 10 and conducting at 14. By the age of 15 he had been accepted into the prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy where he quickly became the principal flute player of the Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra. From there, he went on to hold principal flute positions with pre-professional orchestras including the Houston Youth Symphony, Texas All-State Orchestra, the USC Symphony and Chamber Orchestra, and the Young Musicians Foundation (YMF) Debut Orchestra.
THE GAY ACTIVIST & PERSONAL STUFF
He resides in Los Angeles with his dogs Luna, Sox, Noel and Daisy. Luna and Phoenix have been fortunate to appear on several episodes of the National Geographic Channel’s the Dog Whisperer. He thanks Cesar Millan for successfully rehabilitating her and saving her life!