Musicians who are financially disadvantaged
Through our Opportunity Scholarships, SYO is able to support musicians from families with an average income of $61,000 per annum. This included families who are refugees, on disability pensions, single parents and tertiary students with limited income. The scholarships cover participation, camp and tours fees, ensuring no young person with the talent to be selected for our Orchestras is excluded due to income.
Moving from Orange, NSW to Sydney to study at the Sydney Conservatorium posed many financial challenges for me. My family is unable to support me while I study in Sydney as they face financial strains at home, so I have supported myself throughout my time at university. As the cost of living in Sydney quickly adds up each week, I find it hard to commit financially to extra activities during the week. Thanks to your help, I can participate without straining to find the money to pay for SYO.
Regional Musicians Scholarships are based on the distance musicians live from Sydney, supporting them to travel to Sydney to participate in the weekly orchestral training program.
The Regional Summer School School Scholarships cover all fees and provide travel and accommodation bursary for regional musicians. This fund has allowed SYO to triple the number of regional musicians engaging in this program over the past three years.
The Macquarie Group Regional Musician Scholarship is awarded to a musician from a regional area who achieves the highest audition rank. This scholarship covers the full cost of a senior musician each year. This scholarship is generously supported by Macquarie Group staff.
The SYO outreach programs with support from this fund, supports 3 regional hubs, in the Central West (Dubbo), North West (Tamworth) and South Coast (Bermagui/Bega). Each year SYO tours an Orchestra to each of these hubs and provides:
- School Concerts
- Community Concerts working with local orchestras and choirs
- Orchestral Training Workshops in partnership with NSW Regional Conservatoriums of Music
Western Sydney Youth Orchestra
SYO began focused its reach into Western Sydney in 2017 with the establishment of the Western Sydney Youth Orchestra. Since this time the orchestra has grown and is now an important part of the Western Sydney arts community. The orchestra works with Casula Powerhouse Arts Center, Riverside Theatres Parramatta and FORM Dance Company and present concerts across the region.
In 2020 WSYO worked with FORM Dance Company (Parramatta) and Fling Physical Theatre (Bega) to produce ENCOUNTER, which premiered at the Sydney Festival, this first SYO Orchestra to ever be part of this internationally acclaimed event.
Founding Partners of the Western Sydney Youth Orchestra
Western Sydney Schools Initiative
Keen address issues of access and inclusion, SYO developed the Western Sydney Schools Initiative. Aimed at not only providing access to orchestral concerts in schools but by providing opportunities for young people from two disadvantaged schools in the Granville area to access instrumental lessons and groups ensemble programs.
Supported by the Crown Resorts and Paker Family Foundations, the Western Sydney Schools Initiative will run for 3 years and provide a valuable opportunity for SYO to develop a template for providing access to music education in disadvantaged communities.