We are thrilled you have chosen to apply for OYSA’s Philharmonic & Symphony Orchestras! Please read the information below carefully. You will find everything you need to know and more in this section.
How Do I Audition?
- Click below to be start the process. It’s that easy!
- During registration you will be asked to pay an online $10.00 audition fee. Upon confirmation of payment, you will be redirected to SignUpGenius where you will select a date and time to audition.
- Please register early! Audition dates/times are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Registration will not be accepted after May 7th.
- Audition requirements are listed below under the Auditions FAQ section.
Below are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive regarding the OYSA program and the audition process. (click for information)
- Program FAQ
- Auditions FAQ
What is a full orchestra?
A full orchestra is a musical ensemble that includes instruments from all four common instrument families: string, woodwind, brass and percussion. The Olathe Youth Symphony Association is made up of two full orchestras (Philharmonic and Symphony), and one strings-only group (Prelude Strings).
When are rehearsals?
Rehearsals take place on Monday evenings, 6-8pm, from September to mid-April, except for certain holidays. Prelude Strings rehearsals run January to mid-April from 6-7:30pm.
Where are rehearsals located?
Rehearsals take place at Olathe South High School.
When are concerts held?
Concerts are held at Olathe South High School.
What is the financial commitment?
$170 per concert season for Philharmonic and Symphony members.
Are there other commitments?
No, but parents who volunteer for such things as stage set-up and tear down, stage decorating crew, and music library maintenance are not only greatly appreciated but critical to the success of our organization.
Can students participate in OYSA but not participate in his or her school band or orchestra program?
No. The Olathe Youth Symphony Association is designed to enhance, not replace their school instrumental music programs. Each student selected for membership in the OYSA program must sign an agreement committing to participation in his or her school music program on the respective instrument they play in the OYSA. If a school music program is not available where the student attends, the student must be enrolled in weekly private lessons with a well-qualified instructor.
Do students need to have a private instructor to participate?
No. Private study is not required in order to participate, but it is strongly encouraged. Statistically, students who study privately are more successful performing the challenging music required by OYSA members.
Is financial aid available?
Yes. If there is a financial need please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org explaining your situation. Payment plans are also available upon request. Requests must be made by July 1st.
Who is eligible to audition?
Talented musicians in grades 6 through 12 residing within the Greater Kansas City Metropolitan Area and surrounding region. College students are not eligible. Every student must audition each year regardless of previous OYSA participation. Placement is competitive and based on audition score. Students will be judged on tone, intonation, rhythm, technique, musical interpretation and scale proficiency.
My child has never auditioned. Is it difficult to get accepted?
As long as the audition shows a high level of preparation and attention to the appropriateness of their solo, they will be successful. Please ask your school band or orchestra director for help.
When and where are auditions?
Auditions take place each spring for the following season. All auditions take place at Olathe South High School.
When will I know my audition date and time?
Instantly! You will have access to select your own audition date and time, upon completing the audition application.
How long is each audition?
Each audition is approximately 5 minutes in length.
What if I need to request a different time?
You will have access to change your own audition date/time through SignUpGenius.
What are the performance requirements for the audition?
Philharmonic Orchestra Audition Requirements (grades 7-9, Intermediate Level)
- Scales: Scale requirements are different for every instrument. Each instrument is assigned two 1-2 octave scales depending on each student’s current experience level. Click here to view the requirements for your instrument. PERCUSSION REQUIREMENTS are also available on this link.
- Solo: Perform a solo (1-3 minutes) of your choice that demonstrates your most advanced technical and musical ability on your instrument. Make sure your school’s band or orchestra director helps you choose appropriate music for this type of audition. The solo will be unaccompanied and DOES NOT need to be memorized.
Symphony Orchestra Audition Requirements (grades 9-12, Advanced Level)
- Scales: Play two scales of your choice (one major and one minor) that demonstrates your experience and most advanced technical ability on your instrument. Students must play 2-3 octave scales at a slow to moderate tempo. All scales must be memorized. No vibrato please!
- Solo: Perform a solo excerpt (2-3 minutes) of your choice that demonstrates your most advanced technical and musical ability on your instrument. The solo will be unaccompanied and DOES NOT need to be memorized.
Sight-Reading: Only students chosen to audition for a leadership position by the Music Director will be asked to sight-read.
SYMPHONY PERCUSSION ONLY
- Solos: Perform two solos (2-3 minutes each) that demonstrate technical and musical ability. One solo must be on a mallet instrument and the other on either snare or timpani.
- Sight-Reading: Rhythmic sight-reading on snare drum.
- Please Note: The Youth Symphony will provide the following audition instruments: timpani, xylophone, marimba, snare drum. Students are required to bring their own sticks and mallets to the audition.