PYSO Auditions

Live auditions for new members of the 2017-18 season were by invitation only based upon the results of preliminary recorded auditions that were due April 1, 2017.


Auditions are closed except for horn, trumpet and percussion. If interested in auditioning, please see the procedure below.


Advanced students up to and including college age can apply.

Audition Procedure
  1. Complete the online application form
  2. Submit a Preliminary Audition MP3
  3. If accepted, complete a Live Audition


Preliminary Audition

The preliminary round will consist of two excerpts. No solos are requested for the preliminary round. All applicants are required to submit a recorded audio audition (MP3 format) consisting of two excerpts. The preliminary round will be blind; in other words, the judges will not know the identity of the players, only a number.

There is no fee for the preliminary round of recorded auditions.

  • Audio auditions should be submitted in an mp3 format. Recording with personal or home devices is perfectly acceptable. Professional recordings are not necessary.
  • Ensure that acoustics are adequate.
  • Play excerpts in the order listed. Play them one after the other without pausing the recording.
  • Do not edit after recording. Recordings that are not continuous or that are edited will be disqualified.
  • Email your mp3 audition as an attachment to Your mp3 file should be labeled with your firstname-lastname-instrument. Your email should also have your firstname-lastname-instrument in the subject header.
    Example subject header: preliminary audition for John-Smith-Violin
    Example labeling of mp3 file: John-Smith-Violin.mp3

Mp3s will be reviewed by the Music Director and Instrument Coach. If invited to submit a video audition or for a live audition, you will be asked to pay an audition fee of $25.


Live Audition

If invited to take a live audition, please prepare a solo piece and excerpts. Scales and sightreading may be asked for during the live audition.

  • Bring a prepared solo from the standard repertoire, appropriate for your level of proficiency.
  • Do not bring an accompanist.
  • Please have an extra copy of the solo part, should they be requested by the adjudicators. Normally there is only enough time to hear about 1 minute of your solo, so please plan accordingly with cuts, playing only the exposition, etc.
  • While the solo is important, the judges are more interested in how well you play the required excerpts.
  • If you are playing multiple instruments within one category (flute-piccolo, various clarinets, oboe-English Horn, etc.) you only need to prepare and play ONE solo on your main instrument.
  • Scales: You should be able to play all scales in all major and all melodic minor keys. However, scales are usually not asked for during the live auditions.
  • Sightreading: The judges may ask you to sightread a very short excerpt during the live audition.
  • Excerpts: Please print your own copies of the excerpts following the links below. Click on the instrument name to follow the link for PDF’s of the excerpts. If you have difficulty downloading or printing the excerpts, please contact the PYSO office so that the excerpts can be mailed to you. There may not be time to hear all of the excerpts during the live auditions, but you should be prepared to play them all, if asked. Please pay particular attention to correct tempo, following the dynamics, and accurate intonation. It is advisable to listen to professional recordings to hear the excerpts in context (particularly for proper tempo), and to work on the excerpts at lessons with your private teacher.

What's Happening

4:00 pm Rehearsal @ Heinz Hall
Rehearsal @ Heinz Hall
Sep 24 @ 4:00 pm – 9:00 pm
4:00 Sign-in and Orientation and distribution of music 5:00 Pizza Party 6:00-9:00 PM – full orchestra rehearsal
1:00 pm Individual Sectionals (Vln I/Vla... @ Heinz Hall
Individual Sectionals (Vln I/Vla... @ Heinz Hall
Oct 1 @ 1:00 pm – 3:30 pm
Those students who celebrate Yom Kippur will be excused.
3:00 pm Individual Sectionals (Vln II) @ Heinz Hall
Individual Sectionals (Vln II) @ Heinz Hall
Oct 1 @ 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Those students who celebrate Yom Kippur will be excused.

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