Festival of Youth Orchestras

IAYO Festival of Youth Orchestras

Inevitably, we have had to postpone next February’s Festival of Youth Orchestras until 2022 as a result of Covid-19 restrictions. The IAYO Board have decided to carry forward offers to the 2021 Festival to that time and to hold a collective celebration for members in May 2021.

Also, we need to note that the National Concert Hall currently has plans to be closed from January 2022 for two-and-a-half years so we may be adventuring around the country with the Festival all the way through until 2025. We’ll keep you up to date as we find out.

Applications for the 2022 Festival of Youth Orchestras will open later in the year. Dates and the location of the Festival will be confirmed shortly.

There are links below to information on how we select orchestras and the participation agreement has information on what you can expect from the day. You can download the application form to print and handwrite or fill out the Word doc and submit by email.

The Festival of Youth Orchestras is the annual celebration of youth orchestras in Ireland and their members, with a diverse variety of music played by young people, for young people.

If you have any queries about the Festival, please do not hesitate to contact to us on 021-4215185 or info@iayo.ie.

Application Details

Applications for the 26th Festival of Youth Orchestras, taking place in 2022, will open at a later date. The documents below are for 2021 and are just templates. We are not currently accepting applications at this time.

25th Festival of Youth Orchestras

The 25th Festival of Youth Orchestras took place on Saturday, 8 February 2020 in the National Concert Hall and featured Dublin Youth Orchestras Junior Strings, Carlow Youth Orchestra, Athlone Youth Orchestra, National Youth Orchestra of Ireland, IAYO Festival Orchestra, Young Dublin Symphonia, Symphonic Waves Youth Orchestra, and UCD Symphony Orchestra.

The 2020 edition was the 25th Festival of Youth Orchestras. To mark this special occasion, IAYO once again established a Festival Orchestra which featured young musicians from across Ireland. The Festival featured classics such as Ravel’s Boléro, In the Hall of the Mountain King by Greig, two movements of Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6 ‘Pathétique’, and the lively Lord of the Dance by Ronan Hardiman, along with performances of music from The Avengers, pop classics such as Shallow from A Star is Born and The Beatles’ When I’m 64, and modern Irish works by Sam Perkin, Vincent Kennedy and more.

Funded by The Arts Council Ireland and supported by RTÉ Supporting the Arts.

The Festival of Youth Orchestras was one of the first activities to be undertaken by IAYO on its formation in 1994. To date, over 12,000 young musicians have performed at the Festival.

Alexandra College Orchestra, Athenry Music School Camerata, Athenry Youth Orchestra, Athlone Youth Orchestra, Belvedere College Symphony Orchestra, Carlow Youth Orchestra, Ceol na Mara Orchestra, City Music College Orchestra, Cork, City of Belfast Training Orchestra, Clare Music Makers Senior Orchestra, Clare Youth Orchestra, Clongowes Wood College Orchestra, ConCorda, Coole Music Youth Orchestra, Cork City Music College Orchestra, Cork School of Music Sinfonietta, Cork School of Music Symphony Orchestra, Cork Youth Orchestra, Cork ETB Junior Youth Orchestra, Cork ETB Youth Orchestra, County Tipperary Ryan Youth Orchestra, County Wexford Youth Orchestra, Cross Border Orchestra, DIT Wind Ensemble, Donegal Junior Orchestra, Donegal Youth Orchestra, Drogheda Young Orchestral Players, Dublin Youth Orchestras Concert Orchestra, Dublin Youth Orchestras Intermediate Orchestra, Dublin Youth Orchestras Junior Strings, Dublin Youth Orchestras Transitionals, Dunlavin Youth Orchestra, Dublin Youth Orchestras Symphony Orchestra, Dundalk Grammar School Orchestra, Fingal County Youth Orchestra, Galway Youth Orchestra, Galway Youth Jazz Orchestra, Greystones Youth Orchestra, IAYO Festival Orchestra, Irish Midlands Youth Orchestra, Irish Youth Wind Ensemble, Julianstown Youth Orchestra, Junior Cork Youth Orchestra, Kerry School of Music Youth Orchestra, Kilkenny School of Music Junior Strings, Kilkenny Youth Orchestra, Kylemore College Orchestra, Laois School of Music Youth Orchestra, Liffey Valley Orchestra, Limerick Municipal School of Music Orchestra, Lír Orchestra, Loreto Secondary School Orchestra, Kilkenny, Louth County Youth Orchestra, Mannix College Youth Orchestra, Maynooth University Orchestra, Mayo Youth Orchestra, McEgan College Orchestra, Macroom, Music Matters Orchestras, Musica Fusion Youth Orchestra, National Youth Orchestra of Ireland, National Youth Orchestra of Ireland Under 18s, National Youth String Training Orchestra, Newpark Junior Strings, Newpark School of Music Orchestra, North Wexford Youth Orchestra, Nós Nua – Louth Youth Folk Orchestra, NYOI Camerata, Royal Irish Academny of Music Sinfonietta, Royal Irish Academy of Music Intermediate Orchestra, Royal Irish Academy of Music Junior String Orchestra, Royal Irish Academy of Music Percussion Ensemble, Royal Irish Academy of Music Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Royal Irish Academy of Music Symphony Orchestra, Sacred Heart School Orchestra, Scoil Úna Naofa Violin & Orchestra Project, Sligo Academy of Music Sinfonietta, Sligo Academy of Music Junior Orchestra, South East Regional Youth Orchestra, South East Ulster Intermediate Orchestra, South East Ulster Youth Orchestra, St Agnes’ Primary School Orchestra, St Canice’s National School Orchestra, St Joseph’s College, Lucan, St Malachy’s College, St Peter’s College Orchestra, St Peter’s Junior String Orchestra, St Vincent’s School Orchestra, Symphonic Waves Youth Orchestra, The High School Orchestra, The Quay Qunitet, Tipperary Millennium Orchestra, UCD Symphony Orchestra, University College Cork Orchestra, Wesley College Orchestra, West Dublin Youth Orchestra, Western Education and Library Board Youth Orchestra, Wexford School of Music Orchestra, WIT Junior Strings, WIT Youth Orchestra, Young Dublin Symphonia, Young European Strings Chamber Orchestra, Young European Strings Intermediate Orchestra, Young Orchestral Pops.

18th Festival of Youth Orchestras by Jonathan Pearson: As is the case every year, the IAYO Festival of Youth Orchestras took over the National Concert Hall to showcase the talent in youth orchestral music in Ireland. The IAYO Festival, now in its 18th year, saw performances by WIT Budding Bows Chamber Orchestra, Mayo Youth Orchestra, Julianstown Youth Orchestra, and Roscommon County Youth Orchestra in the afternoon with evening performances by a collaborative ensemble consisting of members of Carlow Youth Orchestra, Laois School of Music Senior Ensemble and Lír Orchestra, the County Cork School of Music VEC Youth Orchestra, another collaboration, this time international, by Young Dublin Symphonia, Vestfold Ungdomsstrykeorkester from Norway and Midtjyllands Unge Strygere from Denmark, and the Royal Irish Academy of Music Symphony Orchestra closed the evening. read more… 

Musical Nostalgia at the Festival of Youth Orchestras by Aisling Ryan: I spent a chilly afternoon on Saturday last in the warm surrounds of the Concert Hall, at the 16th festival of youth orchestras. The event is presented by the Irish Association of Youth Orchestras, and I was delighted to be invited to the first half of the day in my capacity as Music Capital Scheme Manager for Music Network . . read more . .