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Youth Orchestra

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The best young instrumentalists in the province from all backgrounds have the unique opportunity to gain invaluable professional experience by playing in the Free State Youth Orchestra, managed by the FSSO since 2009.


The Free State Youth Symphony has taken the last few months to review how we can help be a part of music education and promote orchestral playing at the highest level for the young musicians of Bloemfontein and hopefully the Free State as a whole. This has involved discussions with an number of role players in the Free State musical landscape, in particular the Odeion School of Music.

We have endeavored to find a system that strives to copy the systems that were in place Bloemfontein for so long, making it the hub of music education in central South Africa.

To this end we are excited to announce that we have partnered with the Odeion School of Music, Odeion String Quartet and the UFS to create a learning experience that will give our learners the opportunity to once again follow a seamless path in music education; working within their school programs, complimented by training and exposure to a high level youth orchestra that utilizes the students at the OSM and UFS, leading them to continue their musical training at the Odeion School of Music and University of the Free State and ultimately giving them the potential to play in the Free State Symphony Orchestra, the premiere Professional orchestra in Central South Africa.

The Orchestra will be made up of Odeion School of Music and University of the Free State students as well as students of the highest level on all instruments from the High Schools in the Free State. We will perform a high level of symphonic repertoire, performing repertoire from all the eras and working with local and international musicians.

Rehearsals will be held at the Odeion School of Music on a Wednesday night from 5pm until 7pm.

We aim to perform a minimum of 3 concerts a year.

Alex Fokkens, conductor of the Free State Youth Orchestra

Lesley Jennings, Manager of the Free State Youth Orchestra

Lesley Jennings was appointed as Manager of the FSYO in 2015.

Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Tel: (051) 401-3681

Concerts / School demonstrations

Skoolkonsert 01

Skoolkonsert 02