CMS Orchestras & Ensembles

wide orchestra photo

The Community Music School's orchestras and ensembles are structured to enhance students’ skills beyond individual performance and to support the education process in school music programs. CMS orchestras and ensembles meet during the academic year at the CMS Center on the main campus at Webster University.

 

string ensemble photo

String Ensemble

Average age: 7-10 years • Violin, Viola, Cello

Conductor:  Joanne Keefe

This beginning-level ensemble for strings emphasizes reading skills. Members must have a thorough knowledge of first position and familiarity with letter names of notes, and show good left- and right-hand playing positions.  20-21 rehearsals will be online.

August 26, 2020

Scales

Violin: 

  • Major Scales: G,D,F
  • Melodic minor scales: a,d

Viola and Cello: 

  • Major Scales: D,G,B flat
  • Melodic minor scales: d,g

Play all scales, without music, 1 octave, 2 eighth notes per bow, metronome marking 60= quarter note

Unaccompanied solo

Student's choice that best demonstrates his/her ability.  The solo does not need to be played from memory.  If memorized, bring the solo music into the audition.

Excerpts assigned by the conductor

Link will be emailed to all applicants.  DO NOT MEMORIZE excerpts.  Excerpts must be played from the music during the audition.

Sight-reading

Sight-reading in rhythms of half, quarter, and eighth notes may be requested at the audition.

Median Playing Level

Median playing level generally reached by students in String Ensemble.  There are other appropriate solo works not listed in this guide.

  • Violin:  Suzuki Violin School, Volumes 2-4; other collections include Essential Elements or Solos for Young Violinists
  • Viola:  Suzuki Viola School Volumes 1-2; other collections include Solos for Young Violists or Essential Elements
  • Cello:  Suzuki Cello School Volume 2; other collections include Solos for Young Cellists or Essential Elements.

$426.00 ($213 per semester: due November 1 and February 1)

  • $30 non-refundable registration fee assessed once per academic year per student upon enrollment.
  • Upon acceptance, fall tuition is billed in October.  Tuition assistance is available.

Weekly Rehearsals (Online):  

Wednesdays from 4:30-5:30 p.m.


Performances:

Sunday, January 17, 2021 at 2pm (Online)

Sunday, May 2, 2021 at 2pm (TBA in-person or online)

string orchestra photo

String Orchestra

Average age: 9-14 years • Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass

Conductor:  Nancy Daby

This intermediate-level string ensemble emphasizes music reading skills, understanding of ensemble playing technique, and experience playing repertoire more advanced than String Ensemble repertoire.

August 26, 2020

Scales

Violin: 

  • Major Scales: C, G, D, A, F, B-flat
  • Melodic minor scales:  a, e, d, g

Viola/Cello/Double Bass: 

  • Major Scales: C, G, F, D, B-flat
  • Melodic minor scales: d, g, a, e

Violin/Viola/Cello: Play all scales, without music, 2 octaves, 4 sixteenth notes per bow, metronome marking of 60=a quarter note.

Scales for Double Bass:  Play all scales, without music, 2 octaves, 2 eighth notes per bow, metronome marking of 60=a quarter note

Unaccompanied solo

Student's choice that best demonstrates his/her ability.  The solo does not need to be played from memory.  If memorized, bring the solo music into the audition. 

Excerpts assigned by the conductor 

Link will be emailed to all applicants. DO NOT MEMORIZE excerpts.  Excerpts must be played from the music during the audition.  

Sight-reading

Sight-reading may be requested in rhythms of half, quarter, and eighth notes.

Median Playing Level

The following list indicates the median playing level generally reached by students in String Orchestra.  There are other appropriate works not listed in this guide.

    • Violin:Suzuki Violin School Volumes 4-6 
      Other collections include: Solos for Young Violinists, Vol. 2 or Solo Time for Strings
    • Viola:Suzuki Viola School Volume 3 
      Other collections include:  Solos for Young Violists, Vol. 2 or Solo Time for Strings
    • Cello:Suzuki Cello School Volumes 3-4 
      Other collections include:  Solos for Young Cellists, Vol. 2 or Essential Elements
    • Double Bass: Anderson Sonatina or Marcello Sonata in e minor, any movement

$426.00 ($213 per semester: due November 1 and February 1)

  • $30 non-refundable registration fee assessed once per academic year per student upon enrollment.
  • Upon acceptance, fall tuition is billed in October.  Tuition assistance is available.

Weekly Rehearsals:

Wednesdays from 4:15-5:30pm

Students will be required to wear masks and submit an online Webster University health consent for each in-person rehearsal. All entrances and exits will be separated and clearly marked to ensure proper distancing. Seating will be at a 6’ distance between each student.  In the event of closure due to Covid-19, rehearsals will continue online.


Performances:

Sunday, January 17, 2021 at 2pm
Sunday, May 2, 2021 at 2pm

If audiences are limited for performances, concerts will be recorded and aired online.

YPCO photo

Young People's Concert Orchestra (YPCO)

Students through high school 
Conductor: Patrick Jackson

Violin, Viola, Cello, Double Bass, Flute, Piccolo, Oboe, English Horn, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Bassoon, Horn, Trumpet, Trombone, Tuba, Percussion, Harp  

YPCO is the first full orchestra in the CMS orchestral program.

August 12, 2020

Scales:

Major scales: C,G, D, A, F, B-flat, E-flat  

Melodic minor scales: a, e, b, f-sharp, d, g, c

  • Violin/Viola/Cello:  Play all scales 3 octaves, 3 notes per bow, without music
  • Double Bass:  Play all scales 2 octaves, 3 notes per bow, without music
  • Winds/Brass/Percussion:  Play all scales including chromatic, minimum 2 octaves/range of the instrument, following the rhythm pattern for Missouri All-State auditions
  • Conductor will include the selected scale with the excerpt

Unaccompanied solo

Student's choice that best demonstrates his/her ability.

Suggested Audition Repertoire

Excerpts assigned by the conductor

Link will be emailed to all applicants.

$540.00 ($270 per semester: due November 1 and February 1)

  • $30 non-refundable registration fee assessed once per academic year per student upon enrollment.
  • Upon acceptance, fall tuition is billed in October.  Limited tuition assistance is available.

Weekly Rehearsals:

Thursdays from 4:15-6:15 p.m.

Students will be required to wear masks and submit an online Webster University health consent for each in-person rehearsal. All entrances and exits will be separated and clearly marked to ensure proper distancing. Seating will be at a 6’ distance between each student.  In the event of closure due to Covid-19, rehearsals will continue online.


Performances*:

Sunday, January 24, 2021 at 6pm 

Sunday, May 2, 2021 at 6pm

If audiences are limited for performances, concerts will be recorded and distributed to families online.

YPSO photo

Young People's Symphonic Orchestra (YPSO)

Students through high school
Conductor: Patrick Jackson

Violin, Viola, Cello, Double Bass, Flute, Piccolo, Oboe, English Horn, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Bassoon, Horn, Trumpet, Trombone, Tuba, Percussion, Harp  

This full orchestra is the most advanced of the CMS orchestras.

 

Scales:

Major scales: C,G, D, A, F, B-flat, E-flat, A-flat  

Melodic minor scales: a, e, b, f-sharp, d, g, c, f

  • Violin/Viola/Cello:  Play all scales 3 octaves, 3 notes per bow, without music
  • Double Bass:  Play all scales 2 octaves, 3 notes per bow, without music
  • Winds/Brass/Percussion:  Play all scales including chromatic, minimum 2 octaves/range of the instrument, following the rhythm pattern for Missouri All-State auditions
  • Conductor will include the selected scale with the excerpt

Unaccompanied solo

Student's choice that best demonstrates his/her ability.

Suggested Audition Repertoire

Excerpts assigned by the the conductor 

Link will be emailed to all applicants.

$540.00 ($270 per semester: due November 1 and February 1)

  • $30 non-refundable registration fee assessed once per academic year per student upon enrollment.
  • Upon acceptance, fall tuition is billed in October.  Limited tuition assistance is available.

Weekly Rehearsals:

Mondays from 4:15-6:15 p.m.

Students will be required to wear masks and submit an online Webster University health consent for each in-person rehearsal. All entrances and exits will be separated and clearly marked to ensure proper distancing. Seating will be at a 6’ distance between each student.  In the event of closure due to Covid-19, rehearsals will continue online.


Performances:

Sunday, January 17, 2021, 6pm

Sunday, May 9, 2021, 6pm

If audiences are limited for performances, concerts will be recorded and distributed to families online.

YPOP photo

Young People's Orchestra - Percussion (YPOP)

Conductor: Michael Faris

Designed to complement the Young People's Concert Orchestra (YPCO) and the Young People's Symphonic Orchestra (YPSO), YPOP provides an opportunity for one-on-one and small group coaching, allowing students to excel in orchestral percussion techniques and instrumentation. This program includes placement in either YPCO or YPSO or both.

 

Audition Requirements:

  • Percussion: Be prepared to play all major and minor scales and arpeggios through 4 sharps and 4 flats including chromatic, minimum 2 octaves, following the rhythm pattern for Missouri All-State auditions .
  • On snare drum: closed roll (soft to loud to soft), double stroke roll (slow to fast to slow).
  • An unaccompanied solo of the student's choice that best demonstrates his/her ability.  Click here for the Suggested Repertoire List.
  • 20-21 Audition Scales & Excerpts

 

$324 ($162 per semester: due November 1 and February 1)

  • Includes tuition for YPCO or YPSO
  • $30 non-refundable registration fee assessed once per academic year per student upon enrollment.
  • Upon acceptance, fall tuition is billed in October.  Limited tuition assistance is available.

Fall YPOP rehearsals with Michael Faris:  November 5,12,19
Then if placed in YPSO, 6 rehearsals November 30 through dress rehearsal and concert January 17.  Or if placed in YPCO, 6 rehearsals (plus bonus rehearsal) beginning December 3 through dress rehearsal and concert January 24.

Spring YPOP rehearsals with Michael Faris:  March 11, 18, 25.
Then 6 rehearsals (plus bonus rehearsal) for YPSO beginning March 29 through dress rehearsal and concert May 9. Or for YPCO, 6 rehearsals beginning April 1 through dress rehearsal and concert May 2.

All rehearsals YPOP rehearsals are held from 4:15 - 6:15 p.m.
CMS Center | 535 Garden Avenue

Students will be required to wear masks and submit an online Webster University health consent for each in-person rehearsal. All entrances and exits will be separated and clearly marked to ensure proper distancing. Seating will be at a 6’ distance between each student.  In the event of closure due to Covid-19, rehearsals will continue online. 

 

 

Suzuki Ensemble

The Suzuki Ensemble is comprised of students who have advanced to the highest level of accomplishment in the Community Music School's Suzuki String Program. It is not open for public audition. The Suzuki Ensemble has performed in Missouri, Illinois, Ohio and Wisconsin, and in 2006, toured and performed in Europe. The ensemble has performed in elementary schools, retirement communities, on television, at Powell Symphony Hall, the Fox Theatre with The Piano Guys, and with Time for Three.  Visit the CMS Suzuki Strings page for more information.