Welcome! On this page, you will find information regarding the VYOA’s instrumental audition requirements. Please contact us at auditions@vyo.org if you would like additional information or clarification of the topics below. The online registration form for 2017-2018 season auditions is now open. New students, click here to sign up for an audition appointment.

Information current as of March 2017.

Audition Eligibility

Instrumental placement auditions for our orchestras are open to musicians currently in grades 3-12. Eligible instrumentalists will be in grades 3-12 at the beginning of next season; students who have graduated from high school are not eligible.

We find that most students need one to three years of experience on their instrument to develop the proficiency needed to play in our orchestras.  The VYOA’s Presto program (separate 6-week sessions in Fall and Spring) has an excellent history of providing young string players with their first orchestral experiences and has been the starting point for many of the string players who have reached our top orchestra.

To maintain eligibility for VYOA ensemble membership, students in elementary and middle school must concurrently participate in their school music program if one is offered. We strongly encourage our high school musicians to participate in their school music ensembles, recognizing that course scheduling may preclude them from doing so.

Students are also strongly encouraged to take private lessons to help master their VYOA ensemble music and guide their overall musical development.

New students can register online starting in March 2017 and will be contacted with an audition appointment time. All auditioning students, including current members of VYOA ensembles, must submit a completed registration prior to auditioning.

Audition Requirements

Instrumental auditions typically last 6 to 9 minutes and are sequenced in three parts:

  • Prepared Scales and Arpeggios that represent your current level of ability. See below for instrument specific requirements. No memorization of scales is required.
  • Prepared Solo Selection(s) (without accompaniment) that represent(s) your current level of playing ability. It is permissible to present two separate, contrasting solos if you wish. You will have approximately 5 minutes for performing solo repertoire; if your solo is significantly longer, you may be asked to skip a portion of it. Please bring two additional copies  of your solo music for the Audition Committee (these can be photocopies). No memorization of solo pieces is required.
  • Sight Reading:  You will play a short sight reading exercise aligned to the level of development you display in your prepared materials. Students are given ~30 seconds to silently review each exercise prior to playing it.

String Audition Requirements

Woodwinds/Brass Audition Requirements

Percussion Audition Requirements

Students are encouraged to consider their audition a significant and formal event, and should arrive to the audition with all necessary paperwork prepared, ready to perform.  Members of the VYOA artistic staff hear all instrumental auditions. Qualified students are offered placement in the appropriate VYOA ensemble based on the skills and experience level demonstrated in the audition. All students are notified of their audition results via email.