NOYO to hold August auditions as participation booms

Staff Report

The Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra performs at Finney Chapel in Oberlin.

The Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra performs at Finney Chapel in Oberlin.

Courtesy photo

Area music students are invited to audition for the Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra’s 2017-2018 season.

Auditions will be Aug. 3 at Elyria High School and Aug. 26 at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music.

Additionally, the Summer Symphony, Lorain County’s only weeklong string day camp for middle school-aged students (grades four to nine), is accepting applications for students ages nine to 14.

The camp consists of daily musical instruction and team building activities at the Oberlin Conservatory School of Music from Aug. 6-13 and concludes with an outreach concert.

For more information on auditions or the Summer Symphony, including signing up, visit or email

NOYO’s student enrollment has grown from 70 to 170 over the past three seasons. The explosion has caused a significant budget increase, with tuition revenue topping $50,000 in the 2016-2017 season, compared to $23,000 in the 2014-2015 season. Additionally, ticket sales have drastically increased and concerts often draw crowds of 500 or more.

“We are ecstatic with the upsurge in participation, and we’re very excited for more growth this coming season,” said executive and artistic director Andrew Machamer. “We’re honored to be filling what was clearly a very real need in our community, and we’re hoping to see even more students audition and enroll this year.”

As the organization has grown, staff changes continue to accommodate and reflect the quality and diversity of the different ensembles and programs. Most recently, NOYO welcomed David Pope as director of the Philharmonia Orchestra, the organization’s flagship ensemble. Pope is the orchestra director at Elyria High School and Norwalk Middle School, the director of the Case Western Reserve University Camerata Orchestra, and a senior conductor and co-director of Florida State University’s Summer String Orchestra Camp.

Additionally, Katie Holaway has joined NOYO’s staff as director of the Amati Strings, an ensemble for grade school string players, and Andrew Machamer will continue as director of the Wind Symphony, Lorain County’s only extracurricular ensemble for middle school band students.

Both ensembles are now in their second year and are on track to double in size compared to the previous season.

This year, NOYO will hold its first Composition Competition. NOYO students will be invited to submit an original composition to be performed by Oberlin Conservatory students at the Bop Stop in Cleveland in May 2018.

With the success of the previous additions to the ensemble roster, NOYO has announced a new composition- and improvisation-based chamber ensemble, NOYO Lab Group. Students will explore new ways of making music together and collaboratively compose a piece to be premiered at in May. Colin Holter, NOYO general manager, will direct the ensemble.

All NOYO students will perform the National Anthem at the Lake Erie Crushers game on Tuesday, Aug. 22 at Sprenger Stadium in Avon Lake.

The Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra performs at Finney Chapel in Oberlin. Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra performs at Finney Chapel in Oberlin.

Courtesy photo

Staff Report