On Sunday, July 9, at 3 p.m., the Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (ICYOLA) will celebrate its 15th Annual Season Finale Concert at the Walt Disney Concert Hall, featuring a special tribute to The Temptations and Dr. Otis Williams, the only remaining member of the five original Temptations.

Otis Williams (NNPA)

Dr. Williams, who still tours and performs with his group in the U.S. and abroad, will be presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award from ICYOLA.

Upon receiving the news, Dr. Williams commented, “It’s a great honor to be the recipient of the Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles’ prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award. I’m 81 and Los Angeles is now my home.

“Music transformed my life, and I can only imagine all the wonderful possibilities that lay ahead for this world class orchestra. I was born in rural Texarkana, Texas and grew up in the inner city of Detroit. Berry Gordy and Motown gave The Temptations and many young artists from Detroit’s inner city a chance to make their dreams a reality. 

“That opportunity launched our iconic career. Now 60+ years later, I still love singing on stage and making music. I can personally relate to the life-changing opportunities that Charles Dickerson and ICYOLA are giving the orchestra’s youth.”

Charles Dickerson, (aka Chuck), is the founder, executive director, and conductor of ICYOLA. His professional career spans over 40 plus years of conducting performances throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and Africa.

His best-known work is “I Have A Dream,” a choral and orchestral setting of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s landmark speech, which was performed for the unveiling ceremonies the King Memorial on the National Mall in Washington DC. He has also arranged and conducted orchestral performances of the music of Duke Ellington, Stevie Wonder, Motown and others.

Through its Orchestra Program, ICYOLA presents an annual Season of 8 to 10 concerts that features both the standard orchestral repertoire and contemporary music that resounds within the community from which ICYOLA emanates and that it serves. The Concert Season concludes each year with a Season Finale at the Walt Disney Concert Hall.

ICYOLA boasts approximately 125 members aged 10 and above. ICYOLA offers intense after-school and summer break programs to youngsters in the inner-city communities of Los Angeles where they offer lessons on how to play an instrument, the fundamentals of music theory, and a rigorous literacy enhancement program through which they increase student’s reading, comprehension, listening and speaking skills.

ICYOLA sponsors include KTLA 5, Amgen, KUSC, Pann’s, Making Space, the Los Angeles Department of Arts and Culture, California Arts Council, and numerous Foundations including the Andrew Mellon Foundation, The Mohme Foundation, The Colburn Foundation, The Thelma Pearl Howard Foundation, the Guitar Center Foundation, and a host of private supporters.

Proceeds from the event benefit the ICYOLA Orchestra and Drum Corps, the Los Angeles Orchestra Fellowship, and the South Los Angeles Music Project.

For more information or concert tickets, visit https://icyola.org/.