Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestra

The Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestra (PYSO) has continually offered robust musical training and personal development for young musicians throughout the San Gabriel Valley for more than 40 years. Each year, more than 200 students from more than 45 different schools audition to be a part of this prestigious program designed specifically for middle school students. As part of the Pasadena Symphony Association, the PYSO fosters dedication, excellence, fellowship, and passion in the development of those who are not only outstanding young musicians, but outstanding young individuals.

PYSO has performed throughout the world, including venues in Vienna, Salzburg, Prague, New York’s Carnegie Hall, and many others. The PYSO has also appeared in concert with the United States Air Force Academy Band – Blue Steel – at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO. Members of PYSO have also had many opportunities to play additional performances outside the full orchestra program, such as chamber music at Pasadena Symphony concerts, and a special guest appearance on Fox’s TV sensation, “Glee.” PYSO falls under the auspices of the Pasadena Symphony Association, and students often interact with Pasadena Symphony and POPS conductors, guest artists, musicians, and staff.

PYSO is comprised of three challenging and rigorous ensembles. The String Orchestra and Wind Ensemble are specialty groups that enhance young musicians’ ensemble playing skills, and offer outstanding performance opportunities. The Symphony Orchestra is comprised of wind, brass, percussion, and string players, and performs arrangements and original scores appropriate for middle school students. All three groups perform multiple times each year at a variety of venues, including Pasadena’s world-renowned Ambassador Auditorium. Placement in each ensemble is contingent upon space availability and audition quality.

For information regarding PYSO, please contact our Education and Community Engagement Manager, Christine Witmer, at


May 3, 2014 – PYSO Concert at Ambassador Auditorium


All ensembles are open to students who will be in grades 6 through 9 in September for the coming school year. Auditions for the 2014-2015 season will occur in May of 2014.

Please check back here for more information!