New Hampshire Youth Ensembles

New Hampshire Youth Ensembles

Perform with talented young musicians in the largest ensemble program north of Boston, led by some of New England’s finest conductors.

Enrollment is based on ability, experience, and a commitment to the program. Students are expected to spend a substantial amount of time practicing their music outside of rehearsals and to attend all rehearsals and concerts. Students must take private lessons, but are not required to study privately at MCMS. The ensembles prepare two concerts in January and May with additional performances at off-site venues. This year our ensembles will perform at the Silver Center at Plymouth State University, the Currier Museum of Art, and other locations in the community.

We welcome students to audition for the NH Youth Ensemble program throughout the year. Place­ment is dependent on openings within each ensemble.

  Ensemble enrollment will reduce your private lesson cost!

Download the registration form. 

For information about the NHYE ensembles contact the Music School office at 603-644-4548.


Photo by Matthew Lomanno

String Preparatory Ensemble for Beginner Level Players

This ensemble is the perfect first step to orchestral playing. Students learn how to follow a conductor and play with a string section. Students gain an understanding of playing in tune, mastering melodic and harmonic balance, interpretation of dynamics, tempo and performance etiquette. Deborah Markow leads this ensemble through a progression of repertoire to engage and challenge young players. Ensemble repertoire is tailored to meet the needs of each player while providing the opportunity to gain experience in ensemble playing and improving individual playing skill. Students gain an appreciation for both classical and contemporary music. Past repertoire includes works by Sibelius, Mozart and Haydn.

  • Conductor:  Deborah Markow
  • Ages:  Elementary age – Audition required
  • Rehearsal Time: Monday 5:30-6:30pm
  • Start Date: Sept. 26th, 2016
  • Number of Weeks: 24 weeks
  • Tuition: $450

Audition Requirements:

Auditions: Tuesday, May 24th and Tuesday, May 31st from 5:30-6:30

Scales: A Major, D Major, G Major, C Major

1 Octave, separate bow

♩= 60 (quarter note for each note)

Memorized piece that is less than 4 minutes in length

Sight reading using whole, half, quarter and eighth notes

Please call the MCMS office to schedule an audition day/time.


Photo by Matthew Lomanno

Concert Band for Intermediate Players

Designed primarily for beginner- intermediate woodwind, brass and percussion students, this concert band will build essential skills in ensemble playing. Students will be challenged by a wide variety of age-appropriate literature. This is a great opportunity to work with other young musicians who share common interests and a love of music!

Conductor:  Jodi Lalos
Ages:  Beginner to Intermediate *Students with one year playing experience – No audition is required
Rehearsal Time: Wednesdays 5:00-6:30pm starting in January
Tuition: $150

P1020718NH Youth Concert Orchestra for Middle School and some Upper Elementary and High School Students (intermediate-level players)

The Concert Orchestra rehearses as a string ensemble. The group, comprised mostly of middle school students, works on repertoire to engage players while building on essential individual playing skills. Musicians excel as both strong individual players and ensemble members. This ensemble is built from emerging Suzuki students who need to gain experience prior to Symphony Orchestra and dedicated young string players.

  • Conductor: Paul Pinard 
  • Ages:  Middle School mainly, and some upper Elementary & High School (Intermediate Level Players) – Audition Required
  • Rehearsal Time: Tuesday 4:15-5:45pm
  • Start Date: Tuesday, September 13, 2016
  • Number of weeks: Full Year
  • Tuition: $475

Auditions are Tuesday, June 7th and Wednesday, June 8th from 4:00-7:30pm. Stop by the front office to sign up or call the school at 603-644-4548.

 Sight Reading is required for all instruments

 Please prepare:

  • a one-minute excerpt of a work that demonstrates musicality and expression at a slower tempo
  • a one-minute excerpt of a work that demonstrates your technical ability at a faster tempo



Students should be prepared to play 2 scales (two or three octaves) of their choice.



Photo by Matthew Lomanno

NH Youth Jazz Ensemble for Advanced Level Players

A fast paced, high-level jazz performance ensemble consists of the area’s top high-school (and the occasional middle school) jazz musicians. This ensemble’s primary focus is on developing the student’s technique, improvisational skills and deepening their understanding of jazz. Challenging repertoire will include standard, classic and modern jazz charts. Besides great improvisers, we seek STRONG CLASSICAL PERFORMERS with an interest in jazz as well!

  • Conductor :  Carl Benevides
  • Ages:  High-school (in rare instances middle school) Students – Audition Required
  • Rehearsal Time:  Monday 6:45 – 8:45pm
  • Start Date: Monday, September 12, 2016
  • Number of weeks:  Full Year
  • Tuition: $500

Performance at Mid-Summer Starz

NH Youth Junior Jazz Ensemble

The Junior Jazz Ensemble will focus on a jazz ensemble experience for primarily middle school students. This group is open to ALL instruments and ALL students with the desire to learn the jazz language. Jazz ensemble experience will match each student’s performance level. Students will begin to explore jazz by learning proper jazz style and phrasing, chord knowledge, and jazz improvisation. The Junior Jazz Ensemble will perform regularly at MCMS events along with the advanced jazz ensemble.


Conductor: Russ Ryan
Ages: Middle-school Students – Audition Required
Rehearsal Time: Mondays 5:30-6:30pm
Start Date: Sept. 12th, 2016
Tuition: $400

Contact the Music School office at 603-644-4548 to for more information.


Photo by Matthew Lomanno

The New Hampshire Youth Wind Ensemble for Advanced Level Players

The Music School Wind Ensemble provides a unique opportunity for students to perform with other music students from surrounding area schools who share a strong interest in music and performance. Working together to further their musicianship, students will have the chance to learn, grow and develop both musically and socially.  Rehearsals take place at the Music School every Tuesday night from 6:00-7:30pm with students who also participate in the Symphony Orchestra joining their rehearsal from 7:45-9:00pm. Rehearsals will begin in September.

The ensemble prepares a variety of repertoire inclusive of differing styles and time periods with a focus on skill development, ensemble techniques, and captivating performances.

All students who play woodwind, brass and percussion instruments are eligible to audition.

  • Conductor:  Joe Mundy
  • Ages:  High School (some Middle School) Students – Audition Required
  • Rehearsal Time:  Tuesday 5:45-7:15pm
  • Start Date: Tuesday, September 13, 2016
  • Number of weeks:  Full Year
  • Tuition: $475

Audition Requirements

This coming year (2015-2016), we are offering open acceptance into the ensemble based on director NOMINATION. Students are more than welcome to NOMINATE themselves as well. Any and every student is encouraged to participate – no formal entrance audition is required! You just need to fill out the attached form and either email it to or snail mail it to Diane DiPersio Manchester Community Music School 2291 Elm St, Manchester, NH 03104.

We are looking for students that are both motivated and looking to further develop their musical abilities. Students do not have to perform at an All State level. However, they must have the drive, work ethic, and commitment to take part in this advanced ensemble. Students should be able to perform music of level four or higher. For more information about the ensemble, please see our FAQs page. The deadline for nomination is Monday, June 8, 2015. We will be setting up seat placement auditions for Tuesday, June 16th and Wednesday, June 17th; however, admission is rolling where we will consider members at anytime. Students can call the MCMS office at 603-644- 4548 to schedule their seat placement audition date/time.

Wind Ensemble Nomination Form


Scale Requirements for Seat Placement Audition

Music for Seat Placement Audition

Wind Ensemble Parent Letter


Photo by Matthew Lomanno

Dino Anagnost Youth Symphony Orchestra of New Hampshire  for Advanced Level Players

The  Symphony Orchestra is a full orchestra ensemble comprised of strings, winds, brass, and percussion players. This orchestra is a unique opportunity for students of traditional band and string programs to come together and experience high-level symphonic literature. Students will gain confidence in ensemble techniques, refine individual musicianship, and perform and collaborate with like-minded peers and mentors.

  • Conductor: Dani Rimoni
  • Ages: High School (in rare instances Middle School) Students – Audition Required
  • Rehearsal Time:  Tuesday 6:15-7:15pm – Strings Sectional, 7:30-8:45pm – Full Orchestra
  • Start Date: Tuesday, September 13th, 2016
  • Number of weeks:  Full Year
  • Tuition: $550

Auditions are Tuesday, June 7th and Wednesday, June 8th from 4:00-7:30pm. Stop by the front office to sign up or call the school at 603-644-4548.

 Audition Requirements:


Students should be prepared to play 2 scales (two or three octaves) or their choice.

Solo Works:

Students should prepare two solo works or two movements from the same work that represent contrasting styles.

Sight Reading:

Students will also be asked to sight-read.

To Schedule an Audition Date/Time – Call the MCMS Office at 603-644-4548

The Robbins Farley Select Honors Brass Program – School Partnership Program

BrassEnsembleThe Robbins Farley Chamber Brass Program is a full-scholarship opportunity for students who are looking to pursue music on an advanced level in a chamber music setting. Both groups will meet weekly and be coached by area professionals to prepare for concerts, recitals, and develop the skills used in chamber music playing while reinforcing good brass playing fundamentals. The groups will prepare music written for brass as well as transcriptions of famous pieces spanning from classical to jazz to pop.


Ages: High School (in rare instances Middle School) Students – Audition Required
Rehearsal Time: Mondays 6:30-7:30pm
Start Date: TBA
Number of weeks: Full Year
Tuition: None

Audition Requirements: Two contrasting selections OR two contrasting movements from a solo piece. Additional sight-reading may be required.

To Schedule an Audition Date/Time – Call the MCMS Office at 603-644-4548

Special thanks to our Sponsor:

Monthly Payments

Enroll in a monthly payment plan called “Tuition in Tune” through Centrix Bank. To choose this option, visit the Tuition in Tune page or contact the office. Complete the Tuition in Tune  form as well as the registration form and return both to the Music School.

Tuition Assistance

The Music School is committed to making music education accessible to all, regardless of ability to pay. We are proud to offer need-based financial aid to qualifying students.  If you would like to apply for financial aid, complete our Financial Aid Form and return it to our Registrar.