Phoenix Youth Symphony

Expanding Horizons Through Music
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August Auditions (late auditions) for 2020-2021 will be held via audition videos using the Acceptd online audition platform. All online video audition submissions are due on Saturday, August 8, 2020 at 4:00 pm.

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Learn from the best

Orchestral Training

Conducted by professional musicians. PYS’ seven ensembles offer outstanding learning and performance opportunities.

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Discover a new love

Music Memory

Music Memory is a cultural enrichment program designed to enhance understanding and appreciation of symphonic music.

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Test your skills


The Sixty-first Annual Young Musicians Competition and Grand Prize/Scholarship Auditions were held on January 9 & 10, 2021 at MCC Performing Arts Center. YMC Winners Luncheon date to be announced.

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Latest News

UPDATE PLAN FOR FALL 2020: In place of our large ensembles PYSO will be offering an enhanced, weekly in-person Chamber Music Program for all participant in the fall 2020. If you are viewing from a phone or tablet, scroll down for more information.  The first rehearsal will be delayed until after Labor Day to allow PYSO more clarity and preparation for our plans.

PYSO Board President, Michael Potter, was interviewed on Fox 10 AZAM on July 17, 2020.  Watch the interview HERE!

Registration forms for the 2020-2021 season are posted on the ensemble pages.  Login to your ensemble using the password sent with your acceptance information.  Registration forms and payments/deposits has been extended to Sunday, August 9, 2020 at 11:59 pm.  If you have question please contact the orchestra manager.

August Auditions (late auditions) for the 2020-2021 season will be held via audition videos using the Acceptd online audition platform in place of live auditions.  Submission deadline is Saturday, August 8, 2020 at 11:59 pm. To apply for the August Auditions please click on the Acceptd logo on the Auditions page.  You will be redirected to the PYS Acceptd landing page for application. August non-refundable audition fee is $35.  Requested scales for the video auditions have been posted on the Auditions page.

Some of the PYSO Ensembles have new names for the upcoming season.  The names of the ensembles are:

Prelude Strings
String Orchestra
Wind Orchestra (formerly Symphonic Winds)
Philharmonic Orchestra (formerly Symphonette Orchestra)
Symphony Orchestra (formerly Youth Symphony)

PYS has been interviewing the 2020 graduating seniors in a feature called SENIOR SPOTLIGHTS 2020.  CLICK HERE to meet Youth Symphony trombonist, Gracie Potter.

Congratulations to PYS Artistic Director, Youth Symphony Conductor, and Resident Conductor, The Phoenix Symphony, Matthew Kasper.  Maestro Kasper is a recipient of this year’s The Sir Georg Solti Career Assistance Award. The award, which named 20 recipients this year, recognizes outstanding young American conductors.

CLICK HERE for the latest issue of PYS’ quarterly newsletter, Grace Notes.  Past issues are available on the About Us page.

Watch Matthew Kasper, Phoenix Symphony Resident Conductor (and PYS Music Director and Youth Symphony Conductor) on Arizona PBS “Art in the 48”:

The Phoenix Youth Symphony is actively seeking candidates to fill our newly established position of Executive Director. CLICK HERE for more information.

CLICK HERE to watch Arizona Morning Fox 10 News at Music Memory on February 4, 2020.

Congratulations to the 2020 Young Musicians Competition Grand Prize Winner, Ethan Yang (violin), and Otranto Prize Winner, Daniel Walker (flute).  They performed their concertos, accompanied by The Phoenix Symphony, at the Side-by-Side Concert on Wednesday, February 5th at 6:30 pm at Phoenix Symphony Hall. Congratulations to all of the 2020 Scholarship Winners:  2020 YMC Scholarship Auditions Final Results.

Congratulations to all of the Junior and Senior Division Winners of the 60th Annual Young Musicians Competition held on Saturday, January 4th.  The  complete list is posted on the Competition page.


Practice information and the weekly rehearsal order are posted on the Musicians Corner page each week.


The 2020-2021 Handbook will be posted on Musician’s Corner soon.


Shop at Amazon or Fry’s and support PYS! It’s easy. Click here for details.

Upcoming Events

Phoenix Youth Symphony Orchestras Update Plan for Fall 2020 Season

In place of our large ensembles PYSO will be offering an enhanced, weekly in-person Chamber Music Program for all participant in the fall 2020.

Chamber music is one of the foundational building blocks not only for a great orchestral player, but also a great overall musician.  Our conductors have been looking to add more chamber group options over the last two years to enhance our students experience and we are excited to have the opportunity to offer such a valuable experience.  Chamber ensemble instruction also adds components of leadership and teamwork, sharpening the life-long, transferable skills of working together in a small group setting to achieve excellence. Students will be divided into either a chamber ensemble (i.e. quartets, quintets, choirs) or a chamber orchestra. The Chamber Orchestra will allow for distancing in the orchestra set up in an appropriate rehearsal space.

PYSO students will receive personalized and group instruction from PYSO Conductors as well as coaches from the Phoenix Symphony, ASU and other high-level professionals.

Chamber music ensembles will also allow PYSO to meet required city, state, county and venue guidelines regarding social distancing, group numbers, masks and help to ensure we provide as safe an environment as possible to our students, staff and families.

PYSO is actively searching for multiple performance opportunities in the fall that could include live audience and live streaming concerts in professional venues throughout Arizona. We are in constant conversation with our partners at Symphony Hall, Mesa Center for that Arts, Scottsdale Center for the Arts and various churches regarding venue access.

If, after consideration, you are not comfortable with your child participating in person, please reach out to us regarding possible virtual only offerings we may have in the fall and feel free to contact our Operations Manager, Todd Betz at [email protected] with any questions or concerns.

PYSO Safety Precautions 2020-2021

New Dates:

The registration deadline will be Sunday, August 9th at 11:59 pm in order to give families ample time to consider participation in PYSO.

The first rehearsal will be delayed until after Labor Day to allow PYSO more clarity and preparation for our plans.
Specific start date will be posted when available.

The Fall Retreat has been postponed until Spring 2021.  After consulting with the camps and our conductors, we realized we would not be able to provide the full camp experience with restrictions and safety guidelines in place.  The retreat is a vital part of the PYSO experience, and it is important that our students and families are offered the full experience in a safe setting.

Spring retreat details to come.


 extended to Su





 Rehearsal Notices

2019-2020 Season Schedule

String Orchestra, Wind Orchestra, Philharmonic Orchestra, Chamber Winds & Symphony Orchestra
Rehearsals at 6:30 pm at Central High School unless otherwise noted:


Prelude Strings 
Rehearsals at 6:00-7:45 pm at Paradise Valley Methodist Church (PVUMC)


Weekly Rehearsal Schedule and Information on Musician’s Corner page each week.

Absence Form

Click here to submit an absence form. Please read absence policy carefully.


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