The following content includes audition requirements, expectations and general information regarding The Woodlands Area Youth Symphony. It is considered version 3.5 as we began with a half year and now starting our third FULL season! Students and parents along with new applicants should check this page for revisions before and after each semester. THE WAYS MISSION IS SIMPLE: “To complete the arts – not compete in the arts”.

The W.A.Y.S inaugural concert and second season helped by LONE STAR COLLEGE was a success because of the efforts, talent, dedication and desire that The Woodlands area has for their very own FULL Youth Orchestra. We are now infused into the Woodlands along with the surrounding communities by performing the most well received, publicized and supported concerts of the past four seasons of the Woodlands Symphony. The Woodlands Area Youth Symphony has at their disposal the combined backing of sixty professional musicians, educators, resources of Lone Star College and volunteers that will CONTINUE to be the propulsion for the students of W.A.Y.S. Multiple orchestra teachers along with the WSO Artistic Director will be instrumental in launching the first year-long season.

This handbook contains VITAL information not just for the students that performed last season, but also for those waiting to join in weekly rehearsals (Mondays starting August 27, 2018 from 6:00 to 8:30 PM at Lone Star Montgomery) and scheduled concerts. Please continue reading this basic material that will assist in understanding re-enrollment, new auditions, and upcoming rehearsals/concerts.

1. Students that performed in Guitar Heroes, Firebird & Final Fantasy, New World Symphony Concert or Romeo and Juliet are exempt from this audition and application fee. Please note that auditions to perform with Woodlands Symphony Orchestra require a separate audition. That information is located on the Auditions tab of this website.
2. Students that auditioned in previous years but were not selected must re-audition and but do not pay the application fee.
3. All new students wishing to join W.A.Y.S. must fill out the online application, pay the $25 application fee and perform the audition requirements to be considered.
4. Audition requirements listed below along with the completed application and fee (if needed) stated above must be received by midnight of August 19, 2018. If you miss this date or show up to audition on August 20 the audition committee will NOT allow you play. Students will be selected by quality and by receipt of ALL materials.
5. A letter of approval from your orchestra/band teacher for the 2018-19 school year must be on file on our before the first rehearsal should you be accepted. The letter only need state that your teacher is aware that you are performing with W.A.Y.S along with your regular school orchestra or band. If you are a Home School student, your school does not have a band/orchestra or you were not able to participate in your school music program because of scheduling conflicts, please state so in a letter signed by your parents.

Audition Requirements:

Violin: 3 octave G major with arpeggios
Viola: 3 octave C major with arpeggios
Cello: 3 octave F major with arpeggios
Bass: 3 octave E major with arpeggios
(play scales quarter note=60 in eighth note triplet slurs);
Brass: 2 octave Bb and Ab Major concert using the region band required scale rhythm (quarter notes on the tonic, followed by eighth notes) with arpeggios (in eighth note triplets ). Metronome marking 90-100 (moderato) Full range chromatic stately all notes clearly in a comfortable tempo.
Woodwinds: 2 octave A and Ab Major concert using the region band required scale rhythm (quarter notes on the tonic, followed by eighth notes) with arpeggios (in eighth note triplets). Metronome marking 90-100 (moderato) Full range chromatic stately all notes clearly in a comfortable tempo.
Percussion: concert snare drum roll over three measures of 4/4 time quarter note = 60 starting piano, cres. to forte then decres. back to piano. C Major Scale 2 octaves and arpeggios on mallet instrument of choice in 16th note rhythm. Metronome marking 120 (allegro)
Harp: C major scale, hands together, at a comfortable tempo

All strings, woodwinds, brass and percussion: A solo piece where you can perform 16 measures of technical playing and ANOTHER 16 measure passage that is expressive playing OR TWO SOLO PIECES: 16 measure sections from EACH– one technical and the other expressive. Candidates should bear in mind that WAYS performs standard – difficult orchestral repertoire and your selection of solo material should reflect your readiness to perform at this level.


  • All WAYS members must be part of their school band and orchestra program. A letter of approval from your orchestra/band teacher for the 2017-18 school year must be on file on-or-before the first rehearsal. Exceptions made for home school students, students that attend schools without an orchestra or students that have academic/music requirement scheduling conflicts.
    Rehearsals are every Monday evening from 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM at Lone Star College Montgomery Campus.
  • There will be four concerts at Lone Star College and one Side-by-Side concert with the Woodlands Symphony. Outreach concerts and opportunities for small groups will be presented to families throughout the year.
  •  Tuition for WAYS is $350 per year paid to “Woodlands Area Youth Symphony”. Tuition costs pay for rehearsal space, concert venues, music, office supplies, conductor and clinician fees. Students accepted for W.A.Y.S. that have financial needs will submit a request for review along with tax documentation to be considered for scholarship.
  • The third year of WAYS will have a blending of students from Lone Star College and area Senior/Junior High Schools from multiple school districts. Students are expected to be with a private lesson teacher or in their school program for two to three years before auditioning.
  • Students will audition for “chairs” on the first rehearsal of each semester. Audition material will be available to all players before the first rehearsal and will be chosen from the concert literature.
  • Attendance is expected at all rehearsals and of course the major concerts. Missed rehearsal must be accompanied by a note from the parents the following week. Excessive absences are not acceptable as every player is important. If you feel you cannot make all the rehearsals and concerts, please consider how this affects the others in W.A.Y.S.
  • Darryl Bayer is the Principal Conductor of W.A.Y.S. and will be assisted by specialists that lead sectionals during the semester. Mr. Bayer has lead the Woodlands Symphony as Artistic Director for five seasons now and founded The Woodlands Area Youth Symphony. He comes from a culture of symphony and youth symphonies in Boston Massachusetts where he performed solos with the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops and played from 7-12th grade in the Greater Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra!
  • Concert attire will be black button down shirt and black dress pants for young men. Women may chose similar attire such as a black blouse and loose fitting pants or choice the traditional long black concert dress.
  • Literature for the each season will be demanding but achievable with practice and dedication. Advanced players will have extra opportunities such as performing with the full WSO from time-to-time.

Please address all correspondence to:
Darryl R. Bayer, Artist Director
The Woodlands Symphony Orchestra
Woodlands Area Youth Symphony
Post Office Box 8004
The Woodlands, TX 77387

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