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Thomas Mellan

Organ, Composition

Born in Lyon, France in 1995, Thomas Mellan an organist, composer, harpsichordist and pianist based in Los Angeles. In 2011, he was one of six organists invited to record on the official Walt Disney Concert Hall Organ DVD. He performed as Rising Star in the American Guild of Organists’ West Region Regional Convention and in the Centennial International Summer Organ Festival at the Spreckels Pavilion. As Young Artist of the Year, he performed his debut recital in the 23rd Organ Festival at St. Eustache in Paris, France in 2012. In 2018, he performed on the international organ festivals of Lille and St. Antoine l’Abbaye, in France. He gave the Ukrainian premiere of Messiaen’s Livre d’Orgue during an artistic residency at the Organ Hall in Lviv in the same year. In 2020, he was the first person to arrange and record Chopin’s 12 Études, Op. 10 on pipe organ. 

His catalogue of over thirty compositions includes orchestral, chamber and solo works. His work …on transcendence…,for five solo cellos and orchestra, was premiered by the Sakura cello quintet and the USC Thornton Symphony under the direction of Donald Crockett in 2016. Orest Smovzh premiered Mellan’s 35-minute cycle of six serial inventions for violin solo in 2020. He performed his Ballade de l’impossible as a guest of Cameron Carpenter at Walt Disney Concert Hall in 2019. Ballade de l’impossible was described as being “manically unpredictable” by Mark Swed in the Los Angeles Times. Stephen Tharp gave the European premiere of this ballade in Portugal in 2019. Compositions have been performed in Europe, the United States, and Asia. 

Mellan was the Outstanding Graduate of the masters class of 2019 and the undergraduate class of 2017 at the University of Southern California, Thornton School of Music. He graduated with a Master of Music degree in organ in 2019, and a Bachelor of Music degree with a double major in organ performance and composition in 2017. In 2020 he graduated with a Master of Music degree in composition at USC, studying with Donald Crockett. He studied organ with Cherry Rhodes at USC, and worked privately with Jean Guillou in Paris between 2012 and 2016. Mellan received the Presser Undergraduate Scholar Award in 2016. He was named one of the 20 under 30 young musicians pushing organ in new directions in the Diapason Magazine in 2019. He was awarded the Thornton Faculty Award in 2013, the most prestigious scholarship awarded to an undergraduate at the Thornton School of Music. 


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