Welcome to the Peabody Youth Orchestra home page.  Please feel free to bookmark this page because we will use it for announcements and other communications to the Peabody Youth Orchestra community and potential members.

The primary goal of the Peabody Youth Orchestra is to enrich the lives of participating musicians, and their audiences, through the rehearsal and performance of orchestral repertoire at the highest possible level. Performing overtures, tone poems, complete symphonies as well as accompanying major concerti with guest soloists and winners of the annual Peabody Preparatory Concerto Competition helps the PYO to achieve this goal.

A result of this process of music making in the Peabody Youth Orchestra is that it cultivates in each member his or her own sense of responsibility, commitment, self-discipline, confidence and poise—key ingredients for success in any field. We encourage our students to appreciate high standards of artistic excellence, which can support the individual’s continuing musical understanding for a lifetime.

Being a youth orchestra that is truly regional, the Peabody Youth Orchestra has members from over 50 schools from the Baltimore Metro Area, Washington D.C. Metro Area, Northern Virginia, Southern Pennsylvania and Delaware. Graduates of the Peabody Youth Orchestra who choose music as a career are enrolled in schools such as: Eastman, Cleveland Institute of Music, Juilliard, The Curtis Institute of Music, College-Conservatory of Music—University of Cincinnati, Oberlin, The University of Maryland—College Park, Indiana University, Northwestern and of course, the Peabody Conservatory, to name a few.

The home base for the Peabody Youth Orchestra is the historic Miriam Friedberg Concert Hall. Opened in 1866, and built in neoclassical style, the  Miriam A. Friedberg Concert Hall is one of the oldest recital halls in America. With a split-level orchestra floor and small balcony, the hall seats 700.

The Peabody Youth Orchestra is open to advanced middle through high school age musicians in all strings, woodwinds, brass and percussion. This is the premiere orchestra in the Peabody Preparatory Orchestra program, concentrating on standard orchestral repertoire in a high-level learning and performing experience. Rehearsals are on Saturdays from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. at the Peabody Institute’s main campus in Baltimore. Two to three full-length concerts are given each year, including performances with faculty and guest artists as well as accompanying the winner of the Preparatory Concerto Competition.

Membership is open by audition and previous orchestra or ensemble experience is preferred. Everyone is welcome to audition for the orchestra regardless of whether or not the student studies privately in the Preparatory and whether or not the student plans to go into music as a career. (Only students who study privately in the Peabody Preparatory are eligible to participate in Preparatory recitals and competitions, including the Concerto Competition.)

Once you’re ready to register for classes and/or individual instruction, please visit our registration page.

Additional Audition Information

Chamber Music – for students interested in participating in chamber music, the Young Artists Orchestra (YAO) or Peabody Youth Orchestra (PYO), audition will serve as an audition for both the orchestra and chamber music programs.  Students will only need to prepare the requirements for the orchestra audition.  No additional solo work will be required.  For students who are only auditioning for chamber music, please sign up for a chamber music audition and follow the specific audition requirements for that program. More information on the Chamber Music program can be found here.


More about youth orchestra audition process and requirements