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AUDITION DEADLINE: We are accepting audition applications on a rolling admissions basis throughout the season.

The Youth Orchestras of Charlotte is dedicated to nurturing the musical talents of youth in the greater Charlotte area. We strive to instill life-long values of teamwork, responsibility, commitment, community, problem-solving, creativity and cultural appreciation in our students from all social and economic backgrounds. As a beacon of artistic excellence, we develop and inspire the next generation of leaders through the study and performance of chamber and symphonic music. 


Our ensembles are led and coached by a team that includes musicians of the Charlotte Symphony and area music educators. Our Music Director, Dr. Ernest Pereira, has nurtured the talents of the region’s finest young musicians for over 30 years. His inspiration, experience and dedication has enhanced and elevated the musical training of many talented students from both North Carolina and South Carolina.


Benefits of Membership:

  • Being part of a community of musicians that shares a passion for music making and challenging repertoire
  • Masterclasses with nationally recognized guest artists, such as David Kim (Concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra), Mark O’Connor, Hyeyung Yoon, Amadi Azikiwi and university professors
  • Perform with guest soloists
  • Guest performances by nationally recognized ensembles, such as Heifetz on Tour
  • Sectionals with members of the Charlotte Symphony
  • Audition experiences
  • Chamber music and community performance opportunities
  • Travel opportunities in select years (i.e. Kennedy Center Performance in 2020)
  • Opportunities to be a featured student soloist
  • Advancement and leadership opportunities within the ensembles
  • Retreats and social events throughout the season


We have openings in all groups and in all sections. Acceptance and placement is a competitive, merit-based process in which each musician must meet requirements for consideration.

Due to the continuation of the pandemic, we are proceeding with video auditions in lieu of our usual live auditions.  Because of the constraints of this past season, current members (‘20-‘21) of the YOC program do not need to re-audition for the 2021-22 season. Only those members who would like to audition on a different instrument, move up into the Preparatory Orchestra or the YOC need to participate in this round of spring auditions.  All current and new members who are offered positions will take seating auditions within the first two rehearsals of next season to establish seating/part assignments. 

In order to view your video audition requirements; you must select your ensemble, group, instrument and program in the 'Apply Here!' column to your left. From here, you will be taken to the audition requirement information (i.e. specific scales listed; if required for your instrument) for your particular instrument/ensemble.  

Complete and submit the on-line audition application form with the video submission by the listed deadline. All candidates are required to pay a non-refundable $25 audition fee.

  • Select your ensemble, group, instrument, program
  • Input your information
  • Upload your audition materials
  • Enter coupon code
  • Submit your audition

Suggestions for video auditions:

The judges want you to demonstrate what you can do. Prepare all of the requirements listed for your instrument/ensemble on the YOC video audition sheet. The judges are listening for rhythmic accuracy, appropriate tempos, intonation, pitch accuracy, tone, musicality, and technical fluency.

A few tips about your audition recording:

  • Aim for the best possible audio and video quality.
  • Upload your audition as a single recording; no editing
  • Keep a copy of your audition recording file for your records.
  • DO NOT send your audition recording in an email

Questions: Contact Chris Rydel at