Alabama teenager selected to join National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America

Andrew Downs (

An Alabama high school bass player has been selected to join the first-ever National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America, Carnegie Hall announced this week.

Alabama School of Fine Arts 10th grader Andrew Downs will join the 120-member orchestra this summer.

The program includes a two-week residency at Purchase College, State University of New York, followed by an{}international tour with stops at Washington DC's Kennedy Center, followed by dates in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and London.

"It was really exciting, because it was my big goal this year to get into that," said Downs, who aspires to be a professional bass player.

Tour dates and venues for each city will be announced this spring.

"We have been thrilled at the response to our creation of the NYO-USA program," said Clive Gillinson, Executive and Artistic Director of Carnegie Hall, in a news release. "We are very excited, but not surprised that there is such a depth of world class talent among young musicians across the United States, and we know this first roster will be wonderfully strong. With the energy and skill demonstrated by these young players, we fully expect that the music-making of this orchestra will be completely inspirational for participants and audiences alike."