Auditions for Surrey Youth Orchestra

THANK YOU FOR YOUR INTEREST IN AUDITIONING FOR THE SURREY YOUTH ORCHESTRA!
The 2024/25 season audition is only open to wind and brass players.
If you are a strings player, please email us at [email protected]

Please visit the program page for more information about registration fees and schedules for the coming season.

Surrey Youth Orchestra welcomes musicians age 5 – 22 to audition for our 2024/2025 season.

If you are interested in joining the Surrey Youth Orchestra in the coming season from September 2024 to May 2025. please go through this page carefully and fill out an online audition request. We encourage each applicant to review each orchestra’s requirements to ensure they are qualified for the program before applying. *Former SYO members must re-audition each season. 

Audition Fee: $25.00 (non-refundable)


What does an SYO audition video entail?

  1. Fill out your online application form.
  2. Once your payment has been processed, you will receive a confirmation email including instructions on how to upload your video.
  3. Record a solo repertoire piece (or excerpt of a piece) of your choice (recording time maximum 5 mins) and a scale and corresponding arpeggio. Bowings, speed, and rhythm should be observed according to RCM standards. The scale and arpeggio should be the same RCM level (or higher) as the repertoire you submit. Please submit this by no later than August 15.

*Please note: All conductors will be involved in the orchestra placement process for students.  Students will be placed according to the level assessed by the conductors, not the level of the repertoire they auditioned with. The conductors’ decision will be considered final.


Students must be proficient at the following levels at a minimum to audition:
Piccolo Strings 

The youngest orchestra in the SYO family. Andrea Taylor is the conductor. This ensemble offers a starting point for beginner string players who want to join an orchestra.

Requirements: reading and playing at or above Grade 1 RCM or Suzuki book 1. Minimum age: 5 years old

  •  The video submission deadline is Aug 15:  please include (1) a solo of your choice, (2) a scale (3) a corresponding arpeggio
Prelude Strings

Conductor Andrea Taylor leads this orchestral experience for string players of new ability. The Prelude Strings is designed to teach beginning ensemble skills, musical interpretation as well as rhythm development, rehearsal etiquette, and note-reading skills.

Requirements: reading and playing at or above Grade 3 RCM or completing Suzuki book 1. Minimum age: 6 years old

Video Submission Deadlines: 

  • The video submission deadline is Aug 15:  please include (1) a solo of your choice, (2) a scale (3) a corresponding arpeggio

Intermezzo Strings

The Intermezzo Strings perform music that builds upon the theoretical and musical concepts covered in the Prelude Strings. Emphasis will be given to listening skills related to playing in a large ensemble. Conductor Andrea Taylor chooses contrasting repertoire to introduce students to various musical styles.

Requirements: reading and playing at or above Grade 5 RCM or Suzuki book 4. Minimum age: 8 years old

Video Submission Deadlines: 

  • The submission deadline is Aug 15: please include (1) a solo of your choice, (2) a scale (3) a corresponding arpeggio

Intermediate Symphonic Orchestra (NEW) 

Join Conductor Will Chen and our newly established Intermediate Symphonic Orchestra. We invite all instrumentalists who play strings, brass, or percussion to join our ranks. Our repertoire is varied and serves as an introduction to orchestral technique and style. Typically, students in the Intermediate Symphonic Orchestra advance to the Senior Orchestra.

Requirements: reading and playing at or above Grade 7 RCM or Suzuki book 6 for strings players, reading and playing at or above Grade 6 for winds and brass players Minimum age: 11 years old

Video Submission Deadlines: 

  • The submission deadline is Aug 15: please include (1) a solo of your choice, (2) a scale, (3) a corresponding arpeggio

Senior Orchestra

Under the direction of conductor Joel Stobbe, this premiere full symphonic orchestra is comprised of students who demonstrate strong musicianship and highly advanced technical level. The group performs a wide range of demanding orchestra repertoire.

Requirements: playing at or above Grade 8 RCM Minimum age: 13 years old

Video Submission Deadlines: 


What is the SYO time commitment?
The SYO season runs from September to May. SYO rehearsals generally take place from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM on Saturday mornings at the Surrey Christian Secondary Campus, 15353 92 Ave, Surrey, BC. The following is the rehearsal schedule for each orchestra:
 
  • Prelude Strings 9:00 AM-10:00 AM
  • Intermezzo Strings 10:30 AM-12:00 PM
  • Intermediate Symphonic Orchestra 9:30 AM-12:00 PM
  • Senior Orchestra 9:30 AM-12:00 PM
  • Piccolo Strings 12:15 PM-1:00 Pm

Each orchestra member is expected to regularly practice orchestra music during the week and seek individual assistance from their private teachers.

In addition to weekly rehearsals and season highlights, SYO hosts various events such as Chamber Music Workshops, Charis Music Camp, Scholarship Competition, and more exciting activities throughout the year. Join us!