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For Young Musicians

Youth Soloist Competition Audition Information
Jessaly Zhu, pianist, 2018 KSO Youth Soloist

Advanced student performers audition for the opportunity to take the stage as a soloist with the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra. In 2018-19, the Youth Soloist performance will take place on Saturday, December 15, 2018, during our “Sounds of the Season” Concert at Chenery Auditorium.

The 2018 KSO Youth Soloist Competition winner is pianist Jessaly Zhu, a sophomore at Portage Central High School and Kalamazoo Area Math and Science Center, and student of Susan Wiersma Uchimura. Zhu will perform Saint-Saens' "Piano Concerto No. 2," 3rd movement, Presto, with KSO during the Sounds of the Season Concert on Saturday, December 15. Honorable mentions were awarded to Nicholas Hains, marimba, a Mattawan High School senior; Ranya Liu, violin, a Portage Central High School junior; and Mei Lanting, oboe, a Kalamazoo Central High School senior.

2018-19 Youth Soloist Competition Information

The 2018-19 Youth Soloist Competition is completed. Our 2019-20 Youth Soloist Competition will occur in October, 2019. Following is information about the 2018-19 competition for reference for those who may be considering a future audition.

Auditions took place on Saturday, October 27, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Miller Auditorium. Application and application fees were due by Friday, October 19, 2018.

Final Registration Date:
Friday, October 19, 2018
Note: Application due in the office by this date

Audition Date:
Saturday, October 27, 2018
Miller Auditorium, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Performance Date:
Saturday, December 15, 2018
Chenery Auditorium, 8 p.m.

Additional Questions and Contact:
Liz Youker - KSO Vice President of Education & Community Partnerships
(269) 349-7759, ext. 204

Scholarships for Private Lessons

Three scholarships are provided to students with financial need each year through the support of the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra League. One of the three scholarships is designated for a student with a physical disability. Once a student is designated as a scholarship recipient, the award is provided annually until the student graduates from high school or discontinues lessons. The application form will be posted when an opening is available. Area music teachers will be notified of the availability directly.

Private Lessons with KSO Artists in Residence at Crescendo Academy of Music

KSO and CAM partner to make professional orchestra musicians available as instructors for students in the community. Many KSO musicians, including KSO Artists in Residence, serve on the CAM faculty. Visit Crescendo's website or call (269) 345-6664 for availability and scheduling.

Student Performers Showcase

Area schools are invited to showcase their instrumental programs for KSO audiences. Small ensembles perform in the lobby as patrons arrive for a concert. Students receive complimentary tickets to attend the evening's concert. Contact us for available dates and to register.

Professional Training Programs for College Students

Master Classes and Artist Presentations

Selected KSO guest artists will offer master classes and workshops for students at WMU, K-College, and other area school and community music programs.

WMU Artist Scholars

KSO offers scholarships to outstanding WMU string students performing at a professional level. Students are recommended by WMU string faculty in consultation with KSO Music Director Raymond Harvey. Those students join the KSO violin and viola sections for the season.

Arts Administration Internships

Volunteer internships are an opportunity to explore and observe the inner workings of a nonprofit arts organization by assisting with projects in the Education, Development, Marketing/Public Relations and Operations departments. Contact the KSO Education Department for more information.