The Sussex County Youth Orchestra first performed on June 14, 1987 in Newton, New Jersey and is celebrating its 30th anniversary this season. The orchestra has performed over 70 free concerts and has grown to 90 members ranging in age 12 to 28. These musicians, who come from Sussex, Morris, Passaic, Essex and Warren Counties as well as nearby Pennsylvania and New York, represent 31 schools and are taught by over 37 private teachers. The Youth Orchestra has been well represented in Sussex County, North Jersey Area, Region One, and New Jersey All-State Band and Orchestra programs. Our members have also performed with the New Jersey Youth Symphony, and the Manhattan and Juilliard School, Pre-College Divisions. An alumnus of The Sussex County Youth Orchestra is currently the Bass Trombonist with The Boston Orchestra.
The Rocking Strings Orchestra, which was developed for children 5-10 years old, performed its inaugural concert during SCYO's Holiday 1999 concert. This orchestra provides unique opportunities for our youngest string players who are just beginning to read music by allowing them to play together in harmony, yet perform independently in a small group setting. Not only do these children have a great time, but they experience a sense of accomplishment at a job well done.
The Preparatory String Orchestra, another extension of the SCYO family, began in 1991, as a vehicle to launch fresh talent at the primary and intermediate level into a productive junior orchestra. These children, who range in age eight to thirteen, gain valuable experiences and with seasoning and achievement, can proceed to the Youth Orchestra.