HPYS welcomes all traditional orchestral instruments including:


  • Woodwinds: Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon.
  • Strings: Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass, and Harp.
  • Brass: French Horn, Trumpet, Trombone, and Tuba.
  • Percussion: Drums, Timpani, percussion accessories

As piano, saxophone and classical guitar are occasionally part of our ensembles, students of these instruments are also encouraged to contact the Symphony.

Or call (773) 217-8387

How to Prepare

Start early: Plan out your practicing schedule in advance and be sure to cover a bit of each section every day: scales, solo, and sightreading.

Start slowly: Don’t expect to perform perfectly on day one at concert tempo! Start out at 50% of tempo, and once you have achieved proficiency on multiple levels (pitch, rhythm, intonation, dynamics, articulation, phrasing, etc.), move on to 60%.

Be picky: The adjudicators will listen for more than just notes and rhythms – so you should too!

Listen: …to recordings, to your teachers, and to other friends and colleagues auditioning!

Ask for help: There are many qualified private instructors in the Hyde Park area, and many of them are familiar to the Hyde Park Youth Symphony. You can also contact the HPYS with any questions about the audition process.

What to Prepare

Scales: Perform with consistent rhythm and accurate intonation throughout. Play separately or slurred with a quarter note for each pitch at approximately 120 beats per minute for the quarter note.

Youth Symphony:

All: Perform any major or melodic minor scale up to four sharps or flats, two octaves.

Violins: Perform G and B-flat major, three octaves

Violas and cellos: Perform C and E-flat major, three octaves

For scale sheets, visit the IMEA website (click here for strings, click here for winds and use the “Junior Scale Sheet”) or contact the Music Director.

String Orchestra:

Be prepared to perform any two-octave scale up to two sharps or flats.

Solo: Prepare a solo or portion of a solo (of your choice) that best demonstrates your abilities. This should be a studied and prepared piece, not a work in progress. The solo should showcase your technical and musical abilities, as well as your preparation.

Sightreading: Be prepared to sightread a short excerpt from the orchestral literature.