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Youth Orchestra

Following a recent survey of our Youth Orchestra Program families, and given the current provincial orders, the KWS Youth Orchestra Program is not operating this winter. Please check back for updated information about our Fall 2021 programs.  Stay healthy and safe.

Established in the fall of 1966 as Kitchener-Waterloo Junior Symphony, the KWS Youth Orchestra Program (YOP) has developed into a fine multi-level orchestral training platform with four ensembles: Preludium Strings (entry level string ensemble), Youth Strings (junior level string ensemble), Youth Sinfonia (intermediate level string ensemble) and the Youth Orchestra (advanced level symphony orchestra). The YOP’s mission is to empower student musicians to discover their ensemble performance potential in a fun, challenging and safe environment. Our leading idea of inclusivity and versatility provides paths for nurturing future music enthusiasts, listeners, as well as professional and community musicians alike.

The KWS YOP season consist of weekly rehearsals (mid-September through April), sectionals coached by KWS musicians, specialized sessions with guest coaches and concert performances in Raffi Armenian Theater of the Centre In The Square. In addition, YOP offers community outreach performances, side-by-side (collaborative) performances among YOP ensembles, side-by-side performances of Youth Orchestra (advanced level symphony orchestra) with the KW Symphony, an annual Concerto Competition for YO members, retreats, music-filled trips to hear the KW Symphony, social activities and optional Chamber Music training under the tutelage of KWS musicians.

Barb Kaplanek
Education and Community Programs Manager- Youth Orchestra and Schools
519-745-4711 ext. 390
bkaplanek@kwsymphony.on.ca

Youth Orchestra Program Ensembles

Preludium Strings
Entry Level String Ensemble

Provides an introduction to orchestral performance for string players reading and playing at or above Grade 1 RCM (late pieces) or Suzuki Book I (late pieces). Please note that music-reading is a requirement. The provided RCM / Suzuki playing levels are suggested guidelines only.

Rehearsals: Tuesdays, 5:15 to 6:15 pm; September through April, Conrad Centre for the Performing Arts, 36 King St W, Kitchener

Conductor: Ella Weber

Fee: Fee for the full 2019-20 season is $360. The online registration and payment process will begin immediately after the spring audition for new successful candidates and all returning students. Registration and payment is required before the first rehearsal. Each additional YOP member from the same family is entitled to $60 discount off a regular registration fee.

The Youth Strings
Junior Level String Ensemble

Provides orchestral performance instruction for string players with some ensemble experience, reading and playing at or above Grade 3 RCM or Suzuki Book III. The provided RCM / Suzuki playing levels are suggested guidelines only.

Rehearsals: Tuesdays, 5:30 to 7:00 pm. September through April, Conrad Centre for the Performing Arts, 36 King St W, Kitchener

Conductor: David Wadley

Fee: Fee for the full 2019-20 season is $470. The online registration and payment process will begin immediately after the spring audition for new successful candidates and all returning students. Registration and payment is required before the first rehearsal. Each additional YOP member from the same family is entitled to $60 discount off a regular registration fee.

Youth Sinfonia
Intermediate Level String Ensemble

Provides instruction for string players with some ensemble experience playing at or above Grade 6 RCM or Suzuki Book V. The provided RCM / Suzuki playing levels are suggested guidelines only.

Rehearsals: Wednesdays, 5:30 – 7:00 pm, September through April, Conrad Centre for the Performing Arts, 36 King St W Kitchener

Conductor: Allene Chomyn

Fee: Fee for the full 2019-20 season is $470. The online registration and payment process will begin immediately after the spring audition for new successful candidates and all returning students. Registration and payment is required before the first rehearsal. Each additional YOP member from the same family is entitled to $60 discount off a regular registration fee.

Youth Orchestra
Advanced Level Symphony Orchestra

Provides the thrilling experience of advanced orchestral practice and performance of various masterworks in para-professional settings. In addition to the weekly rehearsals, sectionals coached by KWS musicians, retreats, specialized sessions with guest coaches, community outreach performances, side-by-side performances with other YOP ensembles and with the KW Symphony, chamber music concerts and full orchestral performances, Youth Orchestra members will have an opportunity to compete in the annual Concerto Competition. Applicants should play at or above Grade 8 RCM or Suzuki Book VII (Strings). The provided RCM / Suzuki playing levels are suggested guidelines only.

Rehearsals: Sundays, 1:00 to 3:30 pm, September through April, Wilfrid Laurier University, Faculty of Music.

Conductor: Matthew Jones

Fee: Fee for the full 2019-20 season is $550. The online registration and payment process will begin immediately after the spring audition for successful candidates. Registration and payment is required before the first rehearsal. Each additional YOP member from the same family is entitled to $60 discount off a regular registration fee.

Chamber Music Program
Available for all levels

The YOP Chamber Music Program (CMP) provides chamber music instruction for all instrumentalists. Existing and new groups are welcome, as well as individual candidates who based on availability will be organized in ensembles (trios, quartets, etc.).

Training is provided by members of the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony. The instruction focuses on leadership and abilities to follow, teamwork and active listening. The exploration of a wide range of chamber music repertoire is encouraged. This program provides a fun and challenging way to create music, hone skills and expand performance opportunities.

The CMP concert will be scheduled towards the end of the season; other opportunities may include outreach events and Centre In The Square lobby performances.

Fee: TBD based on number of participants and sessions.