Music Director | Leo Eylar
The Senior Orchestra is our premiere symphonic ensemble, comprising approximately 110 outstanding instrumentalists. The extremely high level of technical and musical excellence allows the orchestra to perform a wide range of demanding orchestral repertoire, from Classical and Romantic period masterpieces to world premieres. Since its inception in 1952, CYS has had only three conductors in its 71-year history, and has toured to more than 22 countries across four continents. Conducted by CYS Music Director Leo Eylar, the Senior Orchestra provides exceptional training and performance opportunities as well as a yearly weeklong summer camp of intensive rehearsing and daily sectionals with top Bay Area professional musicians. Orchestra members receive individualized sectional sessions on a regular basis throughout the season. The Senior Orchestra embarks on international tours every other year, and performs four to six concerts per season.
The CYS Senior Orchestra performs at numerous venues throughout the Bay Area, and is currently expanding its performance schedule in the East Bay and run-out performances throughout California.
Sundays: Calltime 2:15, Rehearsal 2:30 - 5:30 PM
Extended rehearsals at the discretion of the Music Director
Summer Camp & Workshops
The CYS Senior Orchestra begins its season preparing new music at the annual CYS Summer Camp, which takes place in the beautiful setting of Redwood Glen, located in the Santa Cruz mountains. During this intensive one-week camp held in early August, CYS Orchestra members combine musical instruction with social activities to forge new friendships in a beautiful camp setting tucked beneath the majestic redwoods.
During the regular season, sectional workshops are held once per concert cycle led by prominent professional symphony musicians of the Bay Area.
California Youth Symphony was the first American youth orchestra to tour overseas. Historically, every other year the California Youth Symphony embarks on an international tour. These professionally managed tours provide students with first-rate performing opportunities abroad, as well joint collaborative musical events with local youth symphonies, cultural sightseeing excursions, and activities.
Graduating Senior Concerto Competition
The CYS Senior Orchestra holds an annual Concerto Competition in December, offering its current graduating seniors an exciting opportunity to showcase their talent on our season finale concerts in May. Winners perform either a movement from a concerto or a one movement concert piece accompanied by the CYS Senior Orchestra.