Overview

2016 URSO

NOTE: We are happy to announce the return of our Concerto Competition!  Click here for details.


Formed in 1956, The University of Rochester Symphony Orchestra (URSO) continues a tradition of joyful performances of masterworks of the symphonic repertoire. Numbering 100 members, the Symphony Orchestra (conducted by Dr. Rachel Waddell) is a blend of university undergraduate and graduate students as well as talented community musicians from the greater Rochester area. 

Membership is by auditions held at the start of the fall semester. URSO rehearses are on Tuesday evenings (7:30PM - 10:30PM) for our series of four free concerts each year that showcase this accomplished ensemble.

The Symphony Orchestra performs in the Henry Alvah Strong Auditorium on the University of Rochester River Campus. 


 Auditioning for the Orchestra

Symphony Orchestra

Please note that while auditions will take place virtually, both URCO and URSO plan to rehearse fully in-person this academic year.

Auditions for the 2021-22 school year will take place virtually on Monday, August 23 from 11:00 to 5:00 pm EST and Tuesday, August 24 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm EST.

You will schedule an appointment online through our system and receive a confirmation email with the Zoom link. Each audition is 10 minutes long. Please double-check your set-up and microphone prior to your audition.

Due to overwhelming interest and retention in the orchestra program, there are very limited spots for the 2021-22 school year. Select all auditions that you wish to take from our drop-down list. “Wait list” auditions mean that we do not currently have an available opening in either orchestra. Audition to be placed on our “wait list” so that you are notified if an opening becomes available for the 2021-22 school year.

You may audition in your dorm room (or other location) or arrange for a practice room by contacting Jimmy Warlick or clicking here.

Audition Requirements:

  • An Introductory Video (See Requirements Below)
  • A 3-4 Minute Solo of Your Choice
  • Be Prepared to Play One of the Following Scales in as Many Octaves as you Comfortably Can (Music Director’s Choice): CM, GM, DM, AM, EM, BM, FM, BbM, EbM, AbM, and the following minor scales (natural, harmonic, and melodic) in 2-3 octaves: a minor, e minor, b minor, f# minor, d minor, g minor, and c minor. This is just to judge student familiarity with music theory and reading, please do your best. If you’re not familiar with all of these scales, you are still encouraged to audition to determine if our orchestras are a good fit for you.


Introductory Video Requirement:

At the University of Rochester Orchestras, we're interested in getting to know our members as whole people (not just as musicians). As part of your audition, you are required to submit a 30 second to a minute video introducing yourself. Upload your video to YouTube, with the privacy setting as "unlisted" (information for uploading to YouTube and privacy settings ["unlisted"] is on YouTube and the web). Copy & paste the video's URL into the required field on the online audition form.

  • You can film the video on your phone OR edit it as you wish. It should reflect your personality as much as possible (from where you film it, to the clothes you choose to wear, included background music, photos, etc.)
  • Make sure to clearly state your name as part of your video.
  • You should include any information that you feel is important for us to know - such as your identifying pronouns, hometown/country, etc.
  • Answer the questions: What does orchestra mean to you? Why are you interested in becoming a member of the University of Rochester Orchestras? What do you feel you would bring to our orchestras beyond your musicianship?
  • Make sure your audio is clear and easy to understand.
  • You are required to submit this video when you register for an audition time.

    If you are a current University of Rochester Symphony Orchestras member auditioning on a new instrument or for a higher placement in our orchestra, you are also required to upload a video as part of your audition. Upload your video to YouTube, with the privacy setting as "unlisted" (information for uploading to YouTube and privacy settings ["unlisted"] is on YouTube and the web). Copy & paste the video's URL into the required field on the online audition form.
  • You can film the video on your phone OR edit it as you wish. It should reflect your personality as much as possible (from where you film it, to the clothes you choose to wear, included background music, photos, etc.)
  • Make sure to clearly state your name as part of your video.
  • You should include any information that you feel is important for us to know - such as your identifying pronouns, hometown/country, etc.
  • Answer the question: What position (instrument) are you auditioning for and why? What do you feel you bring or want to bring to our orchestras beyond your musicianship?
  • Make sure your audio is clear and easy to understand.
  • You are required to submit this video when you register for an audition time.

    • Note: In lieu of a video, you may also submit a one-page introductory application letter introducing yourself. However, the video is preferred.


Concerto Competition Winner Spring 2015

We hope you will join us for this exciting season!