FIND ME AN ORCHESTRA
I am between the ages of 6 and 16 and I play the violin, viola, cello or double bass
I am in high school or university and I play the violin, viola, cello or double bass
I am between the ages of 12 and 18 and I play a woodwind, brass or percussion instrument
I am in high school or university and I play a woodwind, brass or percussion instrument
SYMPHONIC ORCHESTRAL PROGRAM
|THE SYDNEY YOUTH ORCHESTRA||Open to String, Woodwind, Brass & Percussion musicians aged up to 25 years. Approximate minimum standard AMEB AMus or equivalent.|
|SYO PHILHARMONIC||Open to String, Woodwind, Brass & Percussion musicians aged 12+. Approximate minimum standard AMEB Grade 8 or equivalent.|
|SYMPHONIC WIND ORCHESTRA||Open to Woodwind, Brass & Percussion musicians aged 12+. Approximate minimum standard AMEB Grade 6 or equivalent.|
|PETER SEYMOUR ORCHESTRA||Open to String, Woodwind & French Horn musicians aged 12+. Approximate minimum standard AMEB Grade 7 or equivalent.|
|WESTERN SYDNEY YOUTH ORCHESTRA||Open to String, Woodwind, Brass & Percussion players aged 12+. Approximate minimum standard AMEB Grade 5 equivalent.|
ORCHESTRAL FUNDAMENTALS PROGRAM
|STAGE 1, String Orchestra||Open to string musicians aged 6+. Approximate minimum standard AMEB Grade 1 or equivalent.|
|STAGE 2, String Orchestra||Approximate minimum standard AMEB Grade 3 or equivalent.|
|STAGE 3, String Orchestra||Approximate minimum standard AMEB Grade 4 or equivalent.|
|STAGE 4, Sinfonia||Open to String, Woodwind, Brass & Percussion musicians aged 12 and over. Approximate minimum standard AMEB Grade 6 or equivalent.|
WHO CAN JOIN SYDNEY YOUTH ORCHESTRAS
Any musician aged between 6 and 24 who regularly studies with a professional instrumental teacher may audition for an SYO ensemble.
THE SYO ANNUAL TRAINING PROGRAM
Sydney Youth Orchestras aims to nurture talented young musicians to reach their full potential. The seven key elements of our program are outlined in the SYO Orchestral Training Framework.
Auditions are open from July to September every year. Auditions involve playing a short piece of your own choice, a set number of orchestral excerpts selected for your instrument and preferred ensemble, as well as technical work (scales, arpeggios, etc.) and sight-reading.
Both new and current members are required to audition, which is standard practice for all state-based youth orchestras in Australia. The two main reasons for this practice are:
- Individual players progress at different rates. Placements are based on playing ability in the context of all auditionees, not on membership length. Each year there will be some players from an orchestra who are ready to face the challenges of another ensemble and there are those who will benefit more from continuing with their current group.
- There are new members auditioning for Sydney Youth Orchestras each year. By hearing all players, new and existing, auditioning for an orchestra, we can be sure that our standards are high, and that placement is fair and appropriate for everyone. This provides balance within each ensemble and maximum benefit for its members. Frequently Asked Questions.
- Complete our Expression of Interest form if you’re interested in hearing about 2019 auditions.
With limited places available each year, it is a significant achievement to be offered a position in an SYO ensemble. Successful applicants must commit to their orchestra for the whole year. Weekly training runs to the NSW Public School terms calendar for all ensembles except The Sydney Youth Orchestra whose rehearsals are scheduled to complement the tertiary calendar. Musicians are occasionally required to participate in extra rehearsals or workshops outside scheduled rehearsal times. More information about the 2017 rehearsal schedule.
Fees comprise only 35% of the full cost of the SYO Annual Training Program. The balance is funded through the generous support we receive from Government, donors, and our corporate sponsors. For those young musicians who are invited to take a place in one of our orchestras, their cost of participation is less than $10 per hour. All fees are non-refundable. View more information about fees and payments.
REGIONAL NSW STUDENTS
SYO welcomes young musicians who are based in Regional NSW. A tailored rehearsal schedule including a flexible attendance plan and adjusted contribution payments is available for successful applicants who live at a distance which hinders ability to attend each week (i.e. over 200km away). Please contact SYO to discuss this further and to apply to audition via video.
SYO, with the very generous support of the SYO Foundation and many private donors, provides a number of full or partial scholarships. There are two categories of Scholarships available:
Opportunity Scholarships – Support financially disadvantaged young people
Principal Chair Scholarship – When sponsored scholarships are offered to the Principal Chairs of the Symphonic Orchestral Program and are based on merit.
To apply for an Opportunity Scholarship please tick the box on the audition application form. If you would like to support financially disadvantaged young people through Opportunity Scholarships or sponsor a Principal Chair Scholarship more information can be found here or please contact us.