Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra
The Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra (GDYO) is a youth orchestra in Dallas, Texas, USA, founded in 1972. GDYO has grown from a single orchestra of 35 members to a program of over 450 members. The principal group is the eponymous symphony, presently under the direction of the Maestro Richard Giangiulio. The organization as a whole comprises eight groups, which together provide musical opportunities for students from ages five to eighteen. Auditions are held each spring. Coaches and Judges come from the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Opera, Dallas Winds, and area universities and orchestras. Ensembles in the program include two full orchestras, three string orchestras, a wind ensemble, a flute choir, and eight jazz combos.
Ensemble offerings include
- Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra: This full orchestra is the most advanced ensemble in the program and is made up of 104 members, high school seniors or younger. This ensemble has the opportunity, when scheduling and programming align, to perform side by side with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. Richard Giangiulio, conductor.
- Philharmonic: This full symphony orchestra has approximately 94 members, high school seniors or younger. James Frank, conductor.
- Wind Symphony: The Wind Symphony is an advanced symphonic ensemble of 55 to 62 wind, brass and percussion players who are high school seniors or younger. This ensemble performs an annual side by side with the Dallas Winds, America's premier windband. The Wind Symphony has been invited to perform for the Texas Bandmasters Association on multiple occasions. Dr. Nicholas Williams, conductor.
- Flute Choir: This group utilizes all instruments in the flute family, including piccolo, C-flute, alto flute, and bass flute. Members are high school seniors or younger. The Flute Choir frequently performs for the National Flute Association Convention. Dr. Priscilla Holt, conductor.
- Sinfonietta: Members of this unique and relatively small string ensemble are in the 11th grade or younger. James Frank, conductor.
- Dallas String Ensemble: An intermediate level string orchestra, the Dallas String Ensemble consists of approximately 65 string players 9th grade or younger. Susan Younghans, conductor.
- Young Performers Orchestra: This ensemble currently consists of 53 string players, 7th grade or younger, and is the first ensemble experience for many of its members. Susan Younghans, conductor.
- Jazz Institute: The Jazz Institute is made up of three levels (beginning, intermediate, and advanced). Each student participates in a weekly combo rehearsal, as well as an instrument-specific techniques class where musician learn how they fit and function in a jazz combo. Barry Oosterwaal, Jazz Institute Manager.
Approximately every three to four years the GDYO goes on tour beyond outside North America. In 1998, the orchestra journeyed to England; in 2004 to Poland, Germany, and the Czech Republic; in 2007 to China; in 2012 to Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic; and in 2015 to China for a 5-concert/5-city tour. It will tour Spain in the summer of 2018.
The GDYO has repeatedly placed members in the recently established National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America including, in the inaugural year, Franklin Jia (clarinet) and Jackie Johnson (bass).
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- "Im Gewandhaus gibt das Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra am Abend ein Benefizkonzert zugunsten von Kindern mit Epilepsie. (The Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra is giving a benefit concert in aid of children with epilepsy in the Gewandhaus this evening)". mephisto 97.6 (in German). 8 June 2004. Retrieved 28 May 2008.
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