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The world’s first disabled-led national youth orchestra

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The National Open Youth Orchestra (NOYO) is a world first, an ambitious orchestra launched in September 2018 to give some of the UK’s most talented young disabled musicians a progression route. It promotes musical excellence, empowering disabled and non-disabled musicians aged 11-25 to train and perform together as members of a pioneering ensemble.

Some of the National Open Youth Orchestra musicians play acoustic instruments; others, electronic instruments like the Clarion, which can be played with the movement of any part of the body including the eyes.

NOYO collaborates with cutting-edge composers to create exciting new music for a diverse range of musicians and instruments. Our first commission, ‘The Umbrella’ by Liam Taylor-West won a British Composer Award in 2018.

Our first performances are planned for Spring 2020. Until then, we’re in training. NOYO musicians want it to be challenging – for them, and for you. Stay tuned as we inject new diversity and creativity into the orchestra!


Bristol cathedral concert by South-West NOYO members Picture of pianist Ashleigh laughing with Ben cheering her on

Call out for talented musicians (11-25 years old)

Want to take your music to the next level? The deadline to apply to audition for NOYO this year is 31 March, for a September 2019 start. To succeed with NOYO, you'll need a passion for music, the potential to play an instrument to a high standard, and determination to persevere. If you're lacking orchestral experience, don't let that stop you.

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Our new branding is a creative collaboration!

We’re excited to unveil our fresh new branding for the National Open Youth Orchestra, which was developed with our musicians. Our ...

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