When and How to Audition

Before You Audition

Whether you’ve been a member of BYSO for years, or are new, please review the Join BYSO page. It contains critical information about our auditioning and placement policies.

How to Audition

  • Prepare for your audition by reviewing the standards of musicianship expected at each ensemble level and practicing.
  • Register and Pay when the registration link is posted on the website.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled audition time to check in and unpack your instrument. BYSO staff will direct you to your audition room.
  • Play the required audition material for the judges. Your audition will be no longer than 10 minutes. Required audition material can be found here.

2022-23 Season Information

Winter Auditions | December 5th | Registration IS NOW CLOSED

Location: Overlake Christian Church (9900 Willows Rd, Redmond, WA 98052)

The next opportunity to audition for BYSO will be in person on Monday, December 5th on an instrument-need basis only. This audition is open to new students only. Students who auditioned in August 2022 are not eligible.

Eligible instruments listed below will audition between 5:30 pm and 8:30 pm on Monday, December 5th. After you submit the registration form, the office will assign you a specific audition time and email you the details the week of November 28, 2022.

Note: Audition time slots are assigned until full on a first come first serve basis.

Instruments Eligible to Audition this Winter:

  • Viola
  • Double Bass
  • Flute
  • Oboe
  • Bassoon
  • Horn
  • Trumpet
  • Trombone
  • Tuba
  • Euphonium/Baritone
  • Percussion
  • Harp

Instruments Not Accepted At This Time:

  • Violin
  • Cello
  • Clarinet

If you have any questions, please email auditions@byso.org

In-Person Rehearsals:

We are conducting in-person rehearsals for the 2022-23 Season following WA State DOH guidelines for schools. We are watching evolving School District and State COVID guidelines and will make changes accordingly. You can review our current COVID policy here: BYSO COVID Policy


We have different rehearsal locations. Please refer to the specific ensemble pages for the day, time, and location of rehearsals. Note: all rehearsal locations are subject to change.

Fall Auditions:

Auditions for our full regular season generally take place in August each year. All new and returning students must audition for placement in the new season, with the exception of students who have previously auditioned into and participated in Youth Symphony or Percussion Ensemble.

Winter Auditions:

BYSO holds entry auditions in the Winter only for students who haven’t auditioned that season and on an instrument-need basis. Please see our Audition Instructions page for detailed information.

Spring Auditions:

BYSO holds entry auditions in the Spring only for students who haven’t auditioned that season and on an instrument-need basis. Please see our Audition Instructions page for detailed information.

Placement criteria

Your audition will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Intonation
  • Tone Quality
  • Rhythmic Accuracy
  • Musicality
  • Style
  • Overall performance and preparation
  • Instrumentation capacity for each ensemble

Ensemble Placement

At BYSO, students do not audition for specific orchestras. Students should use the Ensemble Levels provided on this site to prepare the most advanced level of audition material that they feel comfortable with and can play well. Preparing material for a certain level does not ensure placement at that level.

Placement is based solely on the musician’s ability, not age or grade.

A student’s ensemble placement is final. Students are only permitted to audition for BYSO once a season.

Sponsors & Partners