The National Open Youth Orchestra brings many opportunities. Playing with amazing musicians, feeling a sense of belonging, improvising and being creative with music, are some of the reasons young people enjoy being part of NOYO.
This is the first orchestra I have ever fitted into. I normally feel like I don’t fit in but I do in NOYO.
National Open Youth Orchestra musicians are supported to realise their musical potential through one-to-one lessons, rehearsals and concerts, in partnership with the Barbican and Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London, Bristol Music Trust’s National Centre for Inclusive Excellence in Bristol, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra in Bournemouth, Midlands Arts Centre, Town Hall Symphony Hall and Services For Education in Birmingham.
Within the National Open Youth Orchestra, we play from notation, but also learn by ear. Because our orchestra is so diverse, our approach to music is very collaborative, guided by musicians’ abilities and creativity. We develop exciting new music with cutting-edge composers, with NOYO musicians very much influencing the process.
It’s a progression route
The National Open Youth Orchestra is for young disabled people either with physical impairments and/or learning disabilities who either already play music using acoustic or electronic instruments, OR already control assistive technology or a communication aid (such as an Eyegaze computer) to a standard that could translate to playing an electronic instrument such as the Clarion.
It’s also for young non-disabled people who already play an acoustic or electronic musical instrument with fluency and flair.
All NOYO applicants need to demonstrate a passion for music, the potential to play a musical instrument with a high degree of control and expression, and a determination to persevere both musically and personally.
I like being in NOYO because they have taught me so much. It has helped me to build my confidence performing and being around others.