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What We Do

Orchestral Programs

Orchestral Programs

DYAO has three main ensembles: Young Artists Orchestra (YAO), Conservatory Orchestra (CO), and String Ensemble (SE).  To determine which ensemble might be best for your student, please consult our proficiency standards below.  If you have questions, please contact us at

Young Artists Orchestra

The Young Artists Orchestra (YAO) is the most advanced of our ensembles.  YAO is conducted by DYAO Music Director Wes Kenney.  Membership is open to instrumentalists between the ages of 12 and 23.  Participation is determined by audition.  YAO performs four to six concerts per season, including one Side-by-Side concert with the Colorado Symphony.  Students receive regular professional coachings throughout the season and attend a two-day intensive retreat.  Concerts for the 2019-2020 season were performed at Boettcher Concert Hall and Lakewood Cultural Center.  Comprised of approximately 90 members, DYAO rehearses Saturday mornings from 9:00am-12:30pm. Past repertoire for the orchestra includes Bernstein’s Symphonic Dances from West Side Story, Brahms’ Symphonies 1, 3, and 4, Dvorak’s Symphonies 6, 7, and 9, and Prokofiev’s Romeo & Juliet Suite No. 2.

Conservatory Orchestra

The Conservatory Orchestra (CO) is an advanced level ensemble for students who want to continue their orchestral performance skills for advancement into the Young Artists Orchestra and collegiate programs.  The Conservatory Orchestra perform three concerts annually in conjunction with the String Ensemble. Students receive regular professional coachings throughout the season, and attend a two day intensive retreat.  Past repertoire includes Beethoven Symphony No. 1, Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony, and Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker and Swan Lake ballets.

Placement in the Conservatory Orchestra is by audition. Membership is open to musicians between the ages of 10 and 18. Conservatory Orchestra rehearses Monday evenings from 6:30pm-8:30pm. **On in-person seating audition days, the time may extend to 9pm**

String Ensemble

The String Ensemble (SE) gives young music students an opportunity to experience the great wealth of string orchestra literature. The ensemble is designed for those who have developed facility in bowing techniques, reading music, and using vibrato.  Comprised of approximately 40 members, the String Ensemble performs four concerts each season in conjunction with the Conservatory Orchestra.

Placement in the String Ensemble is determined by audition. Membership is open to musicians between the ages of 7 and 13. String Ensemble rehearses Monday evenings from 5:30pm-7:00pm. ** On in-person seating audition days, call time may be earlier, at 5:00pm**

Our Impact This Year

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