Welcome to Youth Orchestras of Essex County

We Are Three Orchestras and One Ensemble

of more than 90 musicians from eighteen towns, led by five outstanding conductors who make beautiful classical -and more!-  music on Mondays and Wednesdays during the school year. We play four concerts to a combined audience of about 700 people in the Winter and Spring. Two of our annual concerts are held at South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC), and the others are community service performances.

We have socials for students and parents several times a year, and sectionals for musicians at least five times a year.  Join us!

Mission Statement

We provide a diverse group of musically talented young people the opportunity to participate in an affordable, high-level orchestral experience and cultivate a lifelong love of music.

Join Us

Our orchestras and ensemble offer a musical opportunity for ages 7 to 18, generally second grade through high school.

Placement in the three orchestras and ABC Ensemble is based on an audition. With conductor approval, some musicians will play with the higher-level orchestra, particularly if they have been with us for a long time and have the musical ability and maturity for more intense rehearsals.

In some instances, a musician new to us will benefit from a semester with a less advanced level before moving to another orchestra. Some advanced players in the youngest orchestra may be offered an opportunity to play one piece with the advanced orchestra. Conductors make all placement in a manner they feel best benefits the individual musician and the orchestra as a whole.

Auditions are held in spring and early summer for the next season, starting in September.  Some auditions are available in the fall, space permitting.  We also hold auditions in January for students who wish to join us for the spring session. Please see the “Join us” page for more information.

YOEC Winter Concert_120





YOEC Winter Concert_98 YOEC Winter Concert_39















Visit YOEC Orchestra’s YouTube Channel