If you're ready to make great music and great friends in an environment that is both rigorous and fun, YOEC is the place for you. Click the pull-down menu above for ensemble descriptions and audition requirements. See below for current general audition information.
YOEC's primary audition period is April 15th through May 15th for openings starting in September of the following school year. We hold open houses in th month of April for potential students to visit rehearsals and for families to see what we have to offer. If you are interested in attending an open house or in auditioning for the upcoming school year, please email us at email@example.com to introduce yourself and get our Google Classroom code and video recording instructions.
Have you just missed the audition period? Don't worry! We hear off-cycle auditions throughout the year and we can discuss opportunities for your child for immediate enrollment or the near future, depending on where we are in the current term. Please contact us via email and we will answer all of your questions.
Students who play bowed strings (violin, viola, cello, double bass) can audition for The Overture Ensemble (OVT), The Junior Symphony (JR), or The Essex County Symphony Orchestra (ECSO).
Advanced violin, viola, cello, and double bass students are also eligible to audition for The ABC! Ensemble (ABC; our jazz and world music ensemble). ABC only accepts 1 bass student (electric or upright) and only hold auditions for bass when there is a vacany.
Woodwinds, brass, and percussion
Woodwind, brass, and percussion students can audition for either The Essex Wind Ensemble (EWE) or ABC. Students auditioning for EWE must have 2 years of school experience (or 1 year with a private instructor) to be eligible to audition. ABC is for advanced students only. Top-scoring students in either these ensembles will be offered the opportunity to serve as needed in JR or ECSO on a time-sharing basis.
Piano, guitar, and harp
Harp students ages 12 and up can audition for JR or ECSO. Lever harp students can only apply for JR. ECSO applicants must have a 7-pedal harp. Due to space limitations, currently JR can have only one harpist and we only open auditions when there is a vacancy. For the same reason, ECSO is currently limited to 2 harpists.
Piano students can audition for any YOEC ensemble if there is a vacancy. Each ensemble accepts only one.
Guitarists ages 7 to 11 with 1 to 3 years of experience can audition for OVT on classical guitar.
Advanced guitar students ages 13 and up can audition for ABC if there is a vacancy. ABC accepts only one. An electric guitar (solid or archtop) is preferred.
First, email firstname.lastname@example.org to request our Google Classroom code. Once you have joined our classroom, let us know, so that we can add you to the audtition list. You will then receive instructions on how to submit your audition recording on Google Classroom.
Audition submissions for The Junior Symphony, The ABC! Ensemble, The Essex Wind Ensemble, and The Essex County Symphony Orchestra (ECSO) must include:
1.) A solo piece of the student's choice. Please see details on each ensemble's page for standard difficulty levels for each ensemble.2.) 3 scales (ONLY THREE), chosen by the student, from the list of required scales for your instrument on the ensemble's page.
The Overture Ensemble does not have minimum audition standards for string students. OVT accepts beginners on bowed strings with as little as 6 months of experience, and retains very advanced students if they are in grades 1 to 5. Please contact email@example.com for information on how to record an audition for OVT.
Because YOEC offers ensembles for students at nearly every level of study, from early beginners to conservatory-ready, we are able to place almost every student who auditions for us. If you have followed the eligibility guidelines for our ensembles, your child or teen will be offered a place with us.
Students who are in grades 1 to 12 AND are ages 6 to 18 may audition to be members of YOEC. Students on bowed strings may audition as early as within their first year of study. Woodwinds, brass, and percussion may audition if they have two school years of experience with their school ensemble, or one year of experience in they have a private instructor.
OVT, JR, and ECSO each have space for one pianist and one harpist. ABC has space for one pianist, one bassist (acoustic or electric), and one guitarist. EWE has space for one pianist and one bassist (acoustic or electric). Auditions for these single-chair positions will only be held when there is a vacancy.
Youth Orchestras of Essex County is open to all. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, creed, gender or gender identity, sexual preference, physical ability, or ability to pay.