Preludio Strings is designed for young string musicians with approximately one year of playing experience and minimal note reading ability. In this “pre orchestra” training ensemble, participants learn the basics of performing in an orchestra, such as how to sit while playing, following the baton, and playing basic mixed ensemble repertoire. There is also a focus on developing music reading skills to ensure future orchestral success. Conductor: Barbara Kirk
Concert Orchestra is the BYO’s next level orchestra. Members have generally played for two or more years, have developed note reading skills, and play with good tone and intonation. The repertoire selected for this ensemble generally remains in first position, although advanced beginners will be challenged to play some parts in higher positions. Conductor: Lindsey Selman
Young Artists Orchestra
Young Artists Orchestra is geared towards the intermediate string, player. Musicians in this ensemble are developing musical artistry, as well as more advanced technical skills. String players play comfortably in higher positions, are developing or using vibrato, and can play more complicated key signatures and rhythms. Players are developing skills that are comparable to performing in competitive junior national level or Montana All-State Orchestra. Interim Conductor: Randy Tracy
Repertory Orchestra is our most advanced group. Members play at high technical and musical levels, and the audition requirements are similar to the Montana All-State Orchestra. Regional conductors and master musicians are brought in on a regular basis to provide varied insight into performing at a professional level. Conductor: Randy Tracy
Repertory Winds is an opportunity for students looking for an upper level orchestral experience. This is BYO’s newest group and began in 2017. It consists of woodwinds and brass instruments that typically participate in an orchestra. Students who join are expected to be a soloist in this orchestra, since orchestral woodwind and brass positions are limited. They are trained by the Principal Oboe of the Billings Symphony and Julliard trained, Sue Logan. During the season, the students play chamber music along with playing in the Repertory Orchestra.
Montana Fiddle Club
Montana Fiddle Club is a program sponsored by BYO made up of Billings area students who gather to play fiddle music. It’s a great summer activity directed by Barb Kirk and Lindsey Selman. The fiddle group performs at local events like Moss Mansion Springfest, Strawberry Festival, Yellowstone Art Museum Summer Fair, Montana Zoo, and Tippet Rise. They play fiddle tunes from beginning tunes to advanced to accommodate all levels.