Conservatory Programs

Make great music, meet new friends, and create exciting lifelong memories at the San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory!

At San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory (SDYS), we know that beauty and joy, collaboration and friendship, tenacity and discipline, communication and listening are all essential to cultivating citizenship and personal achievement.

Learning in a musical ensemble that upholds the highest standards delivers these and numerous other profound benefits. This is why SDYS offers every student musician at every musical level the chance to participate in our orchestras and wind ensembles. We commit to giving aspiring musicians from all backgrounds and corners of the San Diego region a place in our rigorous programs.

Our faculty of professional conductors and teaching artists share all that music has to offer by challenging students to meet high expectations. Whether a student first auditions into our Debut Classes or has matured to reach the Ovation Program, our full range of ensembles gives every student a place to excel. San Diego’s finest student performers return to SDYS year after year for this experience of learning and growing alongside friends from across the region.

Culminating performances are essential to reaping the benefits that come from joining a musical ensemble. SDYS musicians and their families thrill at the excitement of our concert performances at the Jacobs Music Center and other prestigious venues. The professional concert experiences we produce are designed to reinforce SDYS’ rehearsal lessons in addition to the progress our musicians make in their school music programs and with their private music teachers. The more music students perform and enjoy, the more they reward themselves, their family, and their community.

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Additional Programs

Programs at a Glance

SDYS’ programs are designed to give student musicians a sequential ensemble experience over multiple years. Debut Classes are SDYS’ entry-level group instruction focusing on beginning ensemble techniques and instrument skills’ development. These classes are provided for students in their first or second year of playing who are preparing to participate in a full ensemble.

Our Inspiration Program offers quality foundational ensembles that provide an important musical and social experience for young students. In these ensembles, students will develop technical, collaborative, and musical skills as they progress on their instruments.

The Showcase Program encourages our intermediate-level students to participate in both an orchestra and a wind ensemble to maximize their musical training and exposure to diverse musical literature from a range of styles and historic periods.

Our Ovation Program provides the most advanced string, woodwind, brass, and percussion musicians with a comprehensive, intensive, pre-professional musical training. Participation in the Ovation Program includes the study and performance of classical music spanning the eighteenth century through the twenty-first century in multiple wind and orchestral ensemble settings. This flagship program provides the finest training at the highest levels attainable in a youth orchestra program.

Learn more about each of our Balboa Programs and their ensembles here.