Posts in Education
When and where are MSYC rehearsals held?

Rehearsals are held at the Emmanuel Lutheran Church at 324 College Ave in Modesto. The Choristers rehearse on Mondays from 4:30-5:30pm and the Chorale rehearses on Mondays from 6:00-7:30pm. For more detailed information, please see the season calendar.

Do I need to be enrolled in a school music program?

MSYC programs are designed to complement members’ personal music development – not be a substitute for other means of instruction. The MSYC strongly suggests that all members contribute their talents to their appropriate school program, where available. This supports our school music curriculum and helps to provide strong leadership and musical role models in the school environment. We believe in the value of music education in collaboration with our community.

How much is MSYC tuition?

MSYC tuition is $300 per season when paid in a lump sum at the beginning of the year or $160 per semester if paid via a payment plan. MSYC families with more than one child participating in any given year will receive a 20% sibling discount after the first full tuition. Please note that it is the family’s responsibility to keep all active MSYC members’ tuition accounts in good standing. The MSYC reserves the right to not allow participation in concerts if a member has an outstanding tuition balance and there are no prior arrangements made with the Finance Department.

What type of music does The MSYC sing? Why is certain music chosen?

The MSYC introduces its singers to a wide variety of quality choral music, from folk music of various cultures to classical pieces and jazz. Being able to draw connections between seemingly dissimilar types of music makes our singers better performers. We want them to be excellent singers and accomplished musicians who have an open approach to music from all over the world. The MSYC teaches music in its original language.

Since this is a secular chorus, why do the children sometimes perform liturgical or sacred music? Do you have any affiliation with the churches in which you rehearse and sing?

Our music is selected from the broadest possible range of quality compositions. Historically some of the finest choral music was written for religious purposes. Pieces are selected for their musical qualities, rather than for any liturgical message, and they reflect no faith tradition. We rehearse and often perform in churches as they are well suited to our practical and acoustical requirements.

Why should I join MSYO?

The MSYO provides young talented musicians with the unique opportunity and experience of playing in a full symphony orchestra ensemble with strings, winds, brass and percussion. This is a place where music students are surrounded by like-minded individuals from all over the region who enjoy making music together. Young musicians have the opportunity to work with experienced music educators, coaches and talented conductors. 

What instruments do you accept into MSYO?

Auditions are open to all traditional orchestra instruments in the sections of Strings, Woodwinds, Brass and Percussion. This includes flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, French horn, trumpet, trombone, tuba, all percussion, violin, viola, cello, and string bass.

Auditions for instruments that are only occasionally used in symphony orchestra repertoire, such as saxophone, harp, piano and English horn, may be accepted at the discretion of the Music Director.  

When are MSYO new season auditions?

MSYO auditions are held in May prior to the start of the following new concert season. The best time to send your application is in early spring. For more audition information, current audition dates, or to register for an audition visit the MSYO audition page or contact us by email. August audition dates are added only as needed to fill available seats at the discretion of the Music Director. 

What is the difference between the Symphony and the Concert orchestra, and how are students placed?

The MSYO’s two ensembles are arranged by student’s age and experience. The Concert orchestra is a preparatory group that works on building a musical foundation through classical pieces that are arranged for younger musicians. The Symphony Orchestra is a more advanced group that focuses on performing original classical repertoire at a professional level.

  • Concert Orchestra (grades 5-9) Intermediate Level.

  • Symphony Orchestra (grades 9-12) Advanced Level. 

Do students move from Concert Orchestra to Symphony Orchestra when they enter high school?

Movement from Concert Orchestra to Symphony Orchestra is based on the results of the audition held each spring. Students must demonstrate a high level of technical expertise in this audition and students in 9th and 10th grade may be asked to continue another year in Concert Orchestra. It is not unusual for a student to audition multiple times before acceptance and you are encouraged to ask for feedback from your audition to understand the areas in which you need to work.