(August 1, 2022) – The Philadelphia Youth Orchestra Music Institute (PYOMI) is committed to increasing access to excellent music education and performance opportunities for students. As a part of the organization’s commitment to growth, President and Music Director Louis Scaglione is pleased to announce the introduction of a new program division, The Philadelphia Youth Symphonic Band (PYSB). The PYSB is designed to provide advanced student musicians from across the greater Philadelphia area access to professional level wind ensemble and band repertoire as an avenue for musical and personal growth. In addition to their musical work and growth, members develop personal traits of character, discipline, perseverance, and citizenship through their work with other serious music students.
Maestro Patrick Bailey is the founding Director and Conductor of the PYSB. A longtime PYOMI associate and PYO alumni, he currently serves as Operations Director and Librarian for the Institute. He is a tenured faculty member of the Pennsbury School District’s internationally recognized instrumental music program and currently holds the position of Music Director & Conductor of the Drexel University Concert Band program. Maestro Bailey is excited to begin the Symphonic Band’s inaugural season and shared that, “To be a part of the growth of the Institute over the last sixteen years, as a student in the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra and as a staff member here, has been deeply humbling. This is an incredible community of student musicians, families, staff, and audiences who help enable music to have a positive impact on our lives. I am thrilled that the organization is reaching out to a new group of students through the development of the Symphonic Band program – bringing band students together from across the region to put together some of the great works of our repertoire will make for a rewarding year. It is inspiring to work with such talented, dedicated, and positive young people. I am excited to begin the season and build this ensemble together.”
Maestro Scaglione is also thrilled to provide more opportunities for music students and knows that Maestro Bailey is the ideal person to direct them. He said, “Patrick has worked with PYOMI for many years and his passion for education and determination to provide the highest-level experiences for students made him the perfect choice for PYSB. We hope to reach students who may be involved in their school bands and have greater potential. We have extensive plans for these musicians.”
Rehearsals for the Symphonic Band begin after the Thanksgiving weekend, on Tuesday evenings at Saint Patrick Hall in Center City Philadelphia, and performances will occur through the winter and spring. Students will have master class sectional rehearsals with expert teachers and musicians, exposure to advanced wind band literature through rehearsal and performance, and access to supplemental resources through the PYO Music Institute including College and Conservatory Audition Preparation classes, Introduction to Conducting classes, and access to the Institute’s Student Resource Center & Library.
Membership in the Symphonic Band is attained through an audition process. In-person auditions will be held on September 17th and 18th, and in mid/late November on the 15th and 22nd. The Philadelphia Youth Symphonic Band (PYSB) accepts woodwind, brass, percussion, piano, string bass, and harp students aged 13 through 18. Details about auditions can be found at www.pyomusic.org.