Eligibility and Proficiency

Eligibility requirements and string proficiency levels have been developed in order to ensure the highest quality musical, educational and social setting for all members. WYSO encourages students (and parents) to have realistic expectations and to apply for an audition at the level most appropriate for their musical development. Consulting with a private teacher or school music teacher is recommended. WYSO is designed to be a sequential orchestral program, however it is quite common for students to spend more than one season in the same orchestra.

Youth Orchestra

Youth Orchestra is open to string, woodwind, brass and percussion students who will be age 13 or older by September 1 of the new school year. The Youth Orchestra is WYSO’s premiere orchestra, performing advanced orchestral literature. Applicants should have several years of band or orchestra experience and perform individually at a pre-college or college level.

String Proficency

Violin/Viola

  • Facility in advanced positions
  • Established Vibrato
  • Violists should have knowledge of Treble Clef

Cello

  • Facility in 1st through Thumb Position
  • Established Vibrato
  • Knowledge of Tenor Clef and Acquaintance with Treble Clef

String Bass

  • Facility in Half through Thumb Position
  • Knowledge of Tenor Clef

Philharmonia Orchestra

Philharmonia Orchestra is open to string, woodwind, brass and percussion students who will be age 12 or older by September 1 of the new school year. Philharmonia performs orchestral literature at the high school and college level, and members receive regular sectional coaching on the repertoire being rehearsed. Applicants should have three or more years of band or orchestra experience and perform individually at an advanced high school level.

String Proficency

Violin/Viola

  • Facility in 1st through 5th Position
  • Intermediate Level Vibrato
  • Violists should have experience with playing in Treble Clef

Cello

  • Facility in 1st through 4th position, experience with playing in Thumb Position
  • Intermediate Level Vibrato
  • Experience playing in Tenor Clef

String Bass

  • Facility in Half through Thumb Position
  • Developing Vibrato

Concert Orchestra

Concert Orchestra is open to string, woodwind, brass and percussion students who will be ages 11 or older on September 1 of the new school year. This orchestra performs music for full orchestra at the high school and advanced middle school level, and members receive regular sectional coaching on the repertoire being rehearsed. Applicants should have two to three years of band or orchestra experience and perform individually at a standard high school or advanced middle school level.

String Proficency

Violin/Viola

  • RH position established, with finger flexibility. Arm drawing the bow straight and using the hand, wrist and forearm together.
  • Good LH position, hand/wrist and forearm in alignment, and flexible fingers.
  • Produce a clean, clear, centered pitch with an established bow stroke and good left hand finger placement.
  • Show signs of vibrato to improve and warm tone production.
  • Ability to perform basic bow style, legato, staccato, marcato, and spiccato along with accented notes.
  • Ability to perform a good pizzicato sound.
  • A basic ability to play in position, especially third position.

Cello

  • Forward and backward extensions, with an ability to play in second, third, and fourth positions. Basic knowledge of thumb position.

String Bass

  • Half, second, and fourth positions and a basic knowledge of thumb position.

Sinfonietta

Sinfonietta is open to string players who will be ages 10 through 15 on September 1 of the new school year. Sinfonietta performs various levels of string orchestra literature from standard middle school (class C) to high school (class A) level, and members receive regular sectional coaching on the repertoire being rehearsed. Applicants should have at least two years of private study or school string experience, along with some ensemble playing.

String Proficency

Violin/Viola

  • RH position established, with finger flexibility. Arm drawing the bow straight and using the hand, wrist and forearm together.
  • Good LH position, hand/wrist and forearm in alignment, and flexible fingers.
  • Produce a clean, clear, centered pitch with an established bow stroke and good left hand finger placement.
  • Show signs of vibrato to improve and warm tone production.
  • Ability to perform basic bow style, legato, staccato, marcato, and spiccato along with accented notes.
  • Ability to perform a good pizzicato sound.
  • A basic ability to play in position, especially third position. (Violin)

Cello

  • Forward and backward extensions, with an ability to play in second, third, and fourth positions.

String Bass

  • Half, second, and fourth positions.

Opus One

Opus One emphasizes technique development, incorporating instruction on fundamentals of scales, shifting, and bowing, in addition to formative ensemble skills experience. Opus One is open to string players who will be age 8-13 on September 1.

String Proficency

Violin/Viola

  • RH position established, with finger flexibility. arm drawing the bow straight and using the hand, wrist and forearm together.
  • Good LH position, hand/wrist and forearm in alignment, and flexible fingers.
  • Can produce a clean, clear, centered pitch with an established bow stroke and good left hand finger placement at times.
  • Ability to perform basic bow style, legato, staccato, marcato, and spiccato along with accented notes.
  • Ability to perform a good pizzicato sound.
  • A basic ability to play in position and beginning third position.

Cello

  • Forward and backward extensions.

String Bass

  • Half and third positions.

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