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Empire State Youth Orchestras challenges and inspires young people to achieve excellence in music through intensive instruction and high-level performance opportunities.
Empire State Youth Orchestras is an "umbrella" organization of nine ensembles comprising over 300 young musicians ranging in grade level from 4th through 12th. As a regional organization, ESYO attracts students from over 75 public and private schools throughout eastern New York State, western Massachusetts, and southern Vermont. The nine performing ensembles (2 full orchestras, a wind orchestra, a string orchestra, two jazz ensembles, and three percussion ensembles) rehearse weekly with professional musicians as conductors and coaches. A season's schedule includes over 30 public concerts and benefit performances, requiring over 600 hours of rehearsal time. The Youth Orchestra, ESYO's most advanced group, regularly performs throughout the Capital Region, as well as at prestigious venues, such as Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood and Carnegie Hall in New York City.
Empire State Youth Orchestras is actively involved in community outreach. In addition to benefit concerts, ESYO has provided free private music lessons to underserved youth during the school day for the past 17 years. Current ESYO members also serve as Mentors to aspiring young musicians.
- Rebecca Calos
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