Young Performers Orchestra

Members of the YPO are seventh graders and younger. This ensemble currently consists of 50 string players (violin, viola, cello and bass) and is the first ensemble experience for many of its members.

In the YPO, musicians learn the fundamentals of playing in an ensemble and receive instruction on proper instrument position and posture. Young musicians are nurtured and challenged while they are introduced to vibrato, a variety of bowing techniques and positions.

The YPO performs three concerts annually.

Rehearsals and Requirements

YPO rehearses on Sundays from 11:00 am – 1:00 pm at the Sammons Center for the Arts. YPO members should demonstrate left hand accuracy in first position, beginning shifting and music reading skills. All GDYO musicians are expected to participate in their school music programs.

Charilyne Rojas, Young Performers Orchestra Conductor

Charilyne Rojas has a lifelong passion for music and teaching. She earned her BM in Music Education from the University of North Texas where she was also heavily involved with the UNT String Project. Mrs. Rojas maintained a private studio teaching toddlers to adults while starting her career in the classroom as a middle school Orchestra Director, one of her favorite age groups to teach. She previously served in TMEA leadership and as General Manager for a local baroque orchestra before having her daughters, Emi and Victoria.

Mrs. Rojas has strong ties to GDYO, being an alumna herself. In 2018, she served on the Board of Directors and steered the Alumni Committee. As of this year, she is also the face behind GDYO's social media and digital content. Her diverse experiences as a musician, educator, arts administrator, and consultant have all helped shape her musical philosophy and holistic teaching approach. Her student-led organization - Concerts for a Cause - helps students share music through local volunteerism. Along with all things strings and education, Mrs. Rojas is also passionate about STEAM, music therapy, arts advocacy & accessibility, and supporting community organizations.

YPO Coaches:
Violin: Louise Rossi
Viola: Rachel Samson
Cello: Neil Gilfillan
Bass: Mike Lelevich