Announcements of schedule changes, upcoming concerts, and other pertinent matters will be posted on our Web site. Occasionally we also e-mail students and parents or hand out written announcements at rehearsal; musicians are expected to take written announcements home to their parents. We suggest that parents ask each week if any announcements were made at rehearsal or any papers sent home.
Auditions are held at the beginning of the orchestra season each fall and spring. Students auditioning for the first time are asked to schedule a 5- to 10-minute audition with the conductor before the first rehearsal in September. Returning students may have a less formal audition as part of the first rehearsal to determine seat assignments.
Each student’s placement in the orchestra will be based on his or her audition, previous participation in the orchestra, leadership qualities and attendance record. Every seat in the orchestra is of equal importance! Mid-year auditions may be held on an as-needed basis.
At the discretion of the conductor, changes of chair position or rotation of parts may occur at any time in the year.
A detailed calendar of rehearsal and concert dates will be handed out at the beginning of each season, and will appear on the MYO Web site. Rehearsals are not held during Yarmouth school holidays.
Fine Arts Credit
A fine arts credit for participation in MYO and inclusion of MYO on high school transcripts (all instruments) is available at most area schools for students who are members in good standing for the entire year. This includes meeting all attendance requirements. If you would like MYO to contact your high school to arrange for the credit on your transcript, please ask us to do so; it is not done automatically.
Like many nonprofit organizations, MYO relies heavily on its annual fundraising appeal. Membership fees do not cover all of our expenses. You can help us by responding to this annual appeal and also by providing us with additional names for our mailing list. If you know of people or organizations interested in supporting MYO (e.g., friends, grandparents or other family members, or businesses), we would appreciate it if you would send us their names and addresses. All gifts are tax deductible.
You may be able to double the impact of your gift if you work for a business that matches employee gifts to cultural organizations. Please inquire at your company’s personnel office. MYO is a tax-exempt organization. If you have questions, please contact us.
PARENT SUPPORT & VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
Parents make a valuable contribution to their children’s education by supporting their musician’s obligation to attend all rehearsals and concerts and to encourage private lessons and regular practice. In turn, MYO provides a unique opportunity for Maine students to play with a full orchestra under professional direction.
Operating this orchestra takes a considerable amount of time and energy. The Board of Trustees is a volunteer group. Most of us are parents of MYO musicians, and like you, we are juggling work, activities of our other children, and commitments to other organizations. We simply cannot do it all.
Therefore, all families are expected to commit to helping with at least one major event and or fundraiser each year. A task list will be available at the parent's meeting in September and on our Web site (www.maineyouthorchestra.org). A mandatory parent meeting during the first or second rehearsal allows families to choose which task they prefer.
This commitment might be coordinating refreshments at concerts, helping with bulk mailings, distributing posters and publicity, helping with concert set-up and break-down, helping coordinate an outreach concert, writing grants, or serving on subcommittees. If you know what you’d like to do to help, let us know. Otherwise, we will contact you to do specific jobs.
MYO also accepts in-kind services. If you or your company can provide a service or a special skill to MYO, it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your help!
PRIVATE LESSONS & SCHOOL MUSIC PROGRAMS
We strongly encourage all orchestra members to take private instrument lessons. If your child does not have a private music teacher, MYO can provide you with a list of references. This allows students to learn music at home so that weekly practices can be devoted to development of the orchestra.
We also encourage all students to participate in their school music programs. Benefits also include access to regional and state orchestras as well as solo and ensemble festivals, opportunities to compete with and meet other young musicians, and access to information about college music programs and music camps. This is also a wonderful way in which students can contribute to their school community, and to repay the start in music they may have received there.
If school has been canceled because of bad weather but the roads are clear by mid-afternoon (and the YHS building is open), rehearsals will continue. If the roads are not clear (or YHS is not open), rehearsals will be canceled. A recording will be left on the MYO phone (751-8031) indicating whether rehearsals are on or off. It is the feeling of the Board that the safety of the students driving long distances to and from rehearsal is of utmost importance and we therefore tend cancel rehearsals rather than risk injury. Cancellations will also be listed on the MYO Web site: www.maineyouthorchestra.org
FINANCIAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE INFORMATION
MYO is an independent, non-profit, tax-exempt organization. It is funded by ticket sales, donations, and a few fundraising activities. Donations are tax deductible and are always appreciated. Checks should be made payable to MYO and mailed to P.O. Box 40, Yarmouth, ME 04096. MYO funds are used to pay salaries for the conductors and their assistants; to purchase music, supplies, insurance, and orchestral equipment; to rent concert halls; and to pay for publications and mailings.
MYO is administered by a volunteer Board of Trustees that meets once a month throughout the year, generally on the first Tuesday of the month while the orchestra rehearses. Parents are encouraged to attend Board meetings, which are open, except when personnel matters and salaries are being discussed. MYO’s charter calls for 9 board members. We currently need additional board members. You don’t have to be a parent, musician or teacher to be on the MYO board – just someone with a desire to see this wonderful community asset continue to thrive.
MYO does not have an office (it’s on our wish list!), but you can contact us in writing at P.O. Box 04, Yarmouth, ME 04096; or by phone at (207) 751-8031. You can contact our conductors in the same way.
MYO Web site
Please check our Web site regularly: www.maineyouthorchestra.org. We add new things often and are working hard to make the site as comprehensive and helpful as possible.