Each student receives a music folder with his or her name on it at the beginning of the orchestra season. All music, whether photocopied or original, is the property of MYO and must be returned promptly after each concert. Markings made on music must be erased before the music is turned in. A small replacement fee may be charged for lost or damaged music.
Students must learn their inpidual music at home so that rehearsal time can be spent on musical concepts and development of the orchestra. Parents should help their child design an effective, regular practice schedule. We encourage students to ask their private music teacher for help with orchestra music.
MYO cannot be responsible for damage to or loss of instruments. Students must be responsible for their own instruments, and parents should be sure their household insurance policy provides adequate coverage.
Attendance at concerts is mandatory. Formal concerts are held in December and May. Check your calendar early -- if there are major conflicts (for example, statewide high school or SAT testing) we may be able to accommodate schedule shifts. Otherwise section players may have to be replaced for that concert. Each student must be respectful of his or her role in the concert. There are no stars in an orchestra – all instruments are important!
To establish a professional look, the following concert dress is required:
Boys: Black pants; white shirt; long, solid-color tie; black suit jacket (optional); dark socks; dark shoes.
Girls: Black long skirt or slacks; white blouse; dark socks or stockings; dark shoes.
Orchestra repertoire is selected by the conductor, string coach, and woodwind/brass coach. Each piece is selected with a concern for participation, challenge, balance and variety of genre for each section of the orchestra. At any given time, one or two sections of the orchestra may not have a part in a particular piece or movement. In orchestral literature the thirteen sections of an ensemble do not play in unison, but rather work together, some resting, others accompanying a solo line. All parts are integral to the whole. Students are encouraged to talk with the conductor or coach regarding their musical preference. However, students and parents must understand that all instruments will not be playing all the time.
Small ensemble performances may be available for interested students in some sections of the orchestra. String and woodwind ensembles have played for The Maine Children's Alliance, Kiwanis, Maine Family Planning, the Children’s Fund, the Bath Area YMCA, Brunswick Area Arts and Cultural Alliance and the University/College of Brunswick. We encourage and enjoy this community involvement. These groups are generally about 4 to 8 instrumentalists, and require an additional commitment of time for practice as well as for the performance.
As part of our commitment to the education and personal growth of our musicians, as well as to all Maine students, we do periodic outreach concerts at museums and schools in the area. These concerts are open to all MYO musicians and are generally a highlight of the season. MYO has played at schools all over southern Maine, as well as at the Portland Museum of Art and the Children’s Museum of Maine in Portland. These concerts may require students to miss school for a half day, and therefore are not mandatory.
MYO is unique in its concerto policy: High school seniors are given the opportunity to play one or two movements of a concerto at the annual spring concert. This is not mandatory, but gives many students the chance they may not otherwise have to play solo repertoire. Private instruction is encouraged and all solo choices must be made by November 1. Due to the nature of the early solo literature, these pieces often do not include all of the orchestra sections. For this reason, solos must be chosen by November to allow the conductor and coaches to balance the rest of the concert. Seniors who would like to play a concerto selection should talk to the conductor before November.
The annual membership fee for the orchestra is $175 (September–May). For two or more children in the same family, one child will pay the full membership fee and each additional child will pay $150. All fees must be paid in full by the second rehearsal in September. Please return your fee together with a registration form for each child. Forms are available on the MYO Web site or at the first rehearsal in September. Checks can be mailed to MYO or handed in at the first two rehearsals in September. All membership fees are non-refundable.
A small amount of financial aid is available for students who need assistance in paying their membership fee. Aid is usually awarded for partial rather than full tuition. In the case of a partial reward, the remainder of the fee should be paid in full by the second rehearsal date in September, unless special arrangements have been made.
For questions regarding membership fees, financial aid, or payment, please contact the MYO Board of Directors at P. O. Box 40, Yarmouth, ME 04096; (207) 751-8031.