South Carolina Philharmonic

Youth Orchestras

Founded in 1964, the S.C. Philharmonic Youth Orchestras (SCPYO) offer exceptional orchestral playing experience for young people throughout the Midlands. Each year more than 200 students participate in three orchestras, comprised of the very best student musicians. Membership in the SCPYO program is open to students throughout the state, ages 8 through high school, on an auditioned basis.

Alumni in the S.C. Philharmonic

The S.C. Phil is especially proud of the following professional players who are alumni of the Youth Orchestras:

  • Mary Lee Taylor Kinosian, Concertmaster
  • Ashley Horvat, Associate Concertmaster
  • Amy Herin, Assistant Concertmaster
  • Susan Cramer, violin
  • Audrey Wade Harris, viola
  • Ryan Knott, violin
  • Sarah Land, violin
  • Mary Lou Schweickert, trombone
  • Cyndi Williams, horn

See more images in our photo gallery!

2017/2018 Concerts

All concerts are held at the Koger Center for the Arts.

General admission tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students.
  • Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017, 3:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018, 3:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 29, 2018, 3:30 p.m.

Tickets may only be purchased at the ticket kiosk in the Koger Center lobby one hour before start time.

Three Ensembles

The SCPYO offers three competitive ensembles for players of different abilities:

Strings Orchestra

Players in the Strings Orchestra polish their skills under the tutelage of Meredith Miller. These musicians gain valuable orchestra experience in a chamber-sized ensemble comprised of each string instrument. 

Repertory Orchestra

Conducted by Hayden Denesha, this is the SCPYO’s intermediate orchestra. It performs unabridged pieces from the standard orchestral repertoire, as well as some advanced level arrangements. 

Youth Orchestra

The SCPYO’s most advanced full orchestra, the Youth Orchestra is conducted by Neil Casey. It performs professional-level repertoire and frequently performs side-by-side with the S.C. Phil. 

Joining the Youth Orchestras

Why join?

  • All SCPYO ensembles are conducted by leading music educators.
  • Concerts are presented three times a year at the Koger Center for the Arts.
  • Serious music students are given the opportunity to play in an orchestra with the finest young players in South Carolina.

Membership requirements:

  • Have at least some playing experience
  • Participation in your school music program if one is available
  • On-time payment of membership dues ($220 for 2017/2018 season)
Please call 803.771.7937 or email for more information.

2017/2018 Auditions

Below, please find and read the audition information sheet, a student information sheet that needs to be filled out completely and turned in at your audition, and music excerpts for you to prepare for your audition. Then, click the link at the bottom to schedule your audition time.




Prepare all excerpts for your instrument + solo piece of your choice. Scale requirements on "Audition Information" sheet above.
In addition to a solo piece of your choice. Scale requirements on "Audition Information" sheet above.
Students auditioning for the Strings Orchestra are to prepare a solo piece of their choosing. Scale requirements on "Audition Information" sheet above.


Supplemental auditions for all instruments are to be held Sunday, Sept. 10, 2017 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the USC School of Music.