Skip to main content


Hi! We are currently updating this page, and some information may be out of date.

Please click "Join" below to be taken to our newest page with up-to-date info.

Where are auditions held?


Current and prospective members must apply for a virtual audition online and submit audition videos and materials online through Acceptd, an online application and audition platform.

  • Live percussion auditions will take place at a later date. Percussionists should apply for an audition online before MAY 24, 2021.
When are auditions held?

Current members and prospective members can apply for a virtual audition starting Monday, April 19, 2021.  Audition videos can be submitted through Wednesday, June 9, 2021.  Summer auditions will run from August through September. Summer auditions are held to fill vacancies.

  • Live percussion auditions will be held on Saturday, June 12 and Sunday, June 13, 2021 at Proctors in Schenectady. Percussionists should apply for an audition before May 24, 2021.
  • Melodies of Christmas Chorale auditions will be held in September.
When is the audition application available, and where?

Current and prospective students can apply for an audition online starting Monday, April 19, 2021 through Wednesday June 9, 2021.

Is there an application fee?

Yes! A $50 audition fee is assessed through the Audition application process.  Audition fee waivers are available for those who qualify.  Contact Acceptd to apply for a fee waiver or speak with Lisa Stulmaker, Director of Finance.

What are the audition requirements for specific ensembles?

Current and prospective members audition by instrument and not by an ensemble.   After the audition process is complete, an independent team of adjudicators and conductors will place each member in an ensemble that will best nourish and support the member's personal and musical growth.

Experienced and advanced classical musicians are expected to prepare a series of orchestral excerpts.  Click here for more details 

When will I find out if I have been accepted?

Results are emailed to applicants by the end of June/early July.

Can I specify which ensemble or orchestra I would like to join when I sign up to audition?

Because of ESYO’s progressive program, you don’t specify on your application for which group you are auditioning. Instead, you choose an instrument by genre, e.g., trumpet – classical, or alto saxophone – jazz.  

Placement in a particular group within those categories is based upon your audition results.  If you choose to audition on two instruments, you must submit two applications.

Can I request a specific audition day/time?

With a virtual audition, you can submit your audition video materials online starting Monday, April 19, 2021.  All audition video submissions are due Wednesday, June 9, 2021. 

Where can I find information about tuition rates and financial aid?

2021-2022 Tuition Rates can be found here and information on financial aid can be found here.

How do I find the online orchestral excerpts?

Excerpts can be found here. Your audition confirmation email will also include information about how to find the online orchestral excerpts.

Which orchestral excerpts do I prepare?

To be considered for the more advanced groups, you need to prepare all the excerpts which can be found here.

What should I wear for my audition?

First impressions are important.  You do not have to wear a suit or fancy dress – we want you to be comfortable, but looking neat, clean, and put together is important.

How long is the audition?

Solo videos should be no longer than 3 minutes each.  Be sure to view the video submission guidelines before submitting your virtual audition. 

In-person auditions tend to be around 10 minutes.

What should I bring to the audition?

Online audition: Instrument and related supplies, a webcam or smartphone with a camera and built-in microphone, and music stand.  You do NOT need to submit an additional copy of your music.

NOTE: For in-person Percussion auditions we provide most instruments.

What will the judges be listening for?

Judges will be listening for tonality, intonation, rhythm and expression.

Do I have to have a private teacher?

If accepted into an ESYO ensemble, you are strongly encouraged to take private lessons so that you can keep up with the music.

Do I have to belong to a school orchestra or band while a member of ESYO?

If accepted into an ESYO ensemble, you are strongly encouraged to participate in your school music groups to the extent your schedule permits.  Mandatory school music activities do take precedence over ESYO rehearsals and concerts, so you will not be penalized if you have to miss an ESYO event because of a mandatory required activity.

This is something that you would discuss at the beginning of the season with your ESYO ensemble manager.

If you have other questions, please email Sue Lascoe, Director of Operations at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.