Brass: Caster J. Teoh, director of Torrance
Strings: Yao Wang, director of Irvine
High String TA: Sunny Yang (Irvine)
Hails from Penang, Malaysia, Caster was appointed Principal Trumpet with Dream Orchestra of Los
Angeles since 2015. While in universities in the United States, he was one of the finalists in the Maia
Quartet competition and was awarded outstanding Pi Kappa Lambda award. Caster has been performing
with many professional ensembles, including the Malaysian Philharmonic, Brazilian Symphony,
Baltimore symphony, Kumamoto International Orchestra, Qatar philharmonic, Quad City Symphony,
Cedar Rapids Opera, National Symphony of Malaysia etc. under numerous conductors and artists, such
as Kees Bakel, Michael Tilson Thomas, Marin Alsop, Kurt Mazur, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Carl St. Clair and
many more. During the summers, he has performed in many countries, including Brazil, Italy, Japan,
China Korea, Belgium, Taiwan, Australia, Thailand, Canada, etc. A doctorate graduate from the
University of Southern California (USC) Thornton School of Music, Caster was inducted as a member of
the Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society in 2007 and 2013. While at school, he was also a Fulbright scholarship
student and has been awarded 2013 outstanding Brass Chamber Music award. For the past summers,
Caster has been performing in many world-class music festivals, including the International Winter
Music Festival in Brazil, Alba music festival in Italy, Domaine Forget Academy in Canada etc. In 2014, he
was invited to perform Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 with West Coast Chamber Orchestra. His
primary teachers include Andrew Balio, Boyde Hood, David Greenhoe, Stephane Beaulac, John Bourque
and William Theis. Aside from being an orchestra musician, Caster has been served as conductor at
Youth Orchestra LA at LAPhil and also brass Instructor at California Summer School for the Arts. Besides
this, Caster also served as recording artists in Hollywood studios, where he had recorded multiple
commercials, movies soundtracks throughout the years. Moreover, Caster has also appeared in many TV
channels, including Channel 18, doing interviews and performances. Caster is a much sought after
teacher of trumpet and other brass instruments. His students have won numerous music awards,
admitted to credited universities, such as San Francisco Conservatory, Michigan University, Rice
University, Eastman School of Music, Indiana University, Oberlin College, Manhattan School of Music,
national trumpet competition, International Trumpet Guild competition, etc.
Yao Wang, a cellist, was born in Xinjiang, China, and began cello study at the age of five with his father. After attending Shanghai Conservatory in China from 2004- 2005, he completed his Performer’s Certificate at La Sierra University in Riverside under the study of Professor Pin Fei Tang. Accepted to the Thornton School of Music, University of Southern California, Yao began study with Eleonore Schoenfeld in 2006, and have received his Bachelor of Music degree in cello performance as a full scholarship student under the instruction of Professor Alexander Suleiman (Student of Deniel Shafran and Natalia Gutman) and Daniel Rothmuller (a form principal assistant cello of Los Angeles Philharmonic). In 2013, Ya has received his Master Degree of music performance under the instruction Dr. Marek Szpakiewicz in Azusa Pacific University.
In 2000 Yao was awarded 2nd Prize in the National Competition and top prize in the Central Conservatory String Competition in China. In 2002 he received a full scholarship to the Itzhak Perlman Music Program, and performed with Perlman in that year. Also in 2002, Yao was featured soloist in a performance of the Elgar Cello Concerto with Xinjiang Philharmonic. Yao won 1st Prize in the American String Teachers' Association competition in Redland, Los Angeles and California State divisions in 2005, followed by a full scholarship to the International Cello Master Program Gregor Piatigorshy Seminar that year. He attended ASTA’s Summer Institute for Chamber Music in 2007. In 2008, he became one of winners in Sigma Alpha Iota Competition. He has been invited to play in many concerts in Los Angeles, Hollywood and he has been principal cellist of the Corona Symphony Orchestra from 2008to 2010. During his Master degree studying at Azusa Pacific University (2010-2013), Yao was pointed to be a teaching assistant of the cello studio in Azusa Pacific University. In 2013, Yao played as a soloist with Corona Symphony Orchestra, and he was invited immediately after the concert to give cello master classes and lecture recitals in La Sierra University, California State University Dominguez Hills, Los Angeles City College.
Not only to the cello performance, but also to the conducting practice, Yao has great interest and passion to it. In his primary school studying, Yao had shown the talent on his conducting. He was appointed to conduct the student choir from his primary school at sixth grade and had received a great success. Later, he had won choir conducting awards many times from his high school, the Attached middle school of Xinghai Conservatory of Music, Guang Zhou, China. In 2011, Yao has decided to take conducting practice as a major study under the instruction of Professor Christopher Russell in the Azusa Pacific University. He conducted the Azusa Pacific University Symphony Orchestra on the September 23rd, 2012 for his debut practice in the U.S. for the public. Yao currently play principal cello in Dream Orchestra and teach cello in Yaola Orchestra.