Leo Eylar is in his 24th year as Conductor and Music Director of the California Youth Symphony. He also teaches and conducts at California State University, Sacramento. In 1982 he received an International Rotary Foundation Fellowship to study conducting at the Hochschule für Musik in Vienna under the tutelage of Otmar Suitner. He received his undergraduate training at Northwestern University and the University of Southern California, where he graduated summa cum laude, and his master’s degree in conducting at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. From 1984 to 1989 he was co-concertmaster of the San Jose Symphony. Eylar has also guest-conducted extensively throughout Europe and Asia, including prestigious music festivals in Japan, Austria, France, and Australia. He has also been a frequent guest conductor of the San Jose Symphony. With a repertoire of over 250 symphonic works conducted, as well as numerous operas, Eylar brings a vast range of expertise and depth to his conducting. He is also a composer of international renown whose works have been performed at Carnegie Hall and many other venues throughout the U.S. and Europe. His Dance Suite for Trumpet and String Orchestra was recorded by the Seattle Symphony and his Rhapsody for Orchestra, premiered by the California Youth Symphony, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Recent commissions have included an octet for the German contemporary group “Ensemble8”, a Sonata for Saxophone and Piano commissioned by well-known saxophonist Keith Bohm, and a large-scale percussion quartet, Percussive Enigmas.