National Youth Orchestra Of Canada Announces ODYSSEY Tour

By: May. 08, 2019

The National Youth Orchestra of Canada (NYO Canada) celebrates its 59th Season with a 5-city Canadian tour, followed by the Orchestra's first trip to Spain, which includes festival performances in San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Alicante, and Granada. The country's preeminent training orchestra, NYO Canada is comprised of 100 of gifted musicians between the ages of 16 and 28, who come together each summer to attend an 8-week intensive training institute followed by a national and international tour. This year's orchestra, featuring musicians from nine provinces, is led by British conductor Michael Francis for concerts in Ottawa (July 21), Montreal (July 22 at Maison symphonique), Parry Sound (July 25), Stratford (July 27), and Toronto (July 29 at Koerner Hall), before heading to Spain.

NYO Canada received rave reviews for its most recent tour, with the Toronto Star calling it "a remarkable orchestra," while Le Devoir found the ensemble "impressive" and praised the performance as "the musical highlight of the summer." On tour in Europe, the orchestra performed at the Edinburgh Festival's Year of Young People championships, where The Scotland Herald raved, "Canada brought a huge squad to play in Scotland and fielded the most versatile and promising youngsters the event has seen yet." This past year, an amazing nine of the orchestra's current and recent members appeared on CBC's 30 Hot Canadian Classical Musicians Under 30 list.

The summer tour concert programme includes Prokofiev's Romeo & Juliet, op. 64; suites Nos. 1 and 2 from Manuel de Falla's The Three Cornered Hat; Mahler's Symphony No. 5; and Sinfonia Sacra (Symphony No. 3) by Polish composer Andrzej Panufnik. The tour will also feature Brahms' Double Concerto for Violin & Cello op. 102, featuring the winners of the Canada Council for the Arts' Michael Measures Prize as soloists (to be announced in July).

This spring saw the release of the new feature-length documentary film "That Higher Level" from the National Film Board of Canada. Director John Bolton followed the 100 musicians of NYO Canada over the course of two months to capture the essence of the training institute and, eventually, the journey and performances on tour across the country. The film premiered at the Victoria International Film Festival and was screened at Montreal's International Festival of Films on Art, as well as in Toronto, Halifax, and Winnipeg. More information on how and where to view this extraordinary film will be available soon. View the trailer here.

British conductor Michael Francis is currently Music Director of The Florida Orchestra and San Diego's Mainly Mozart, as well as Chief Conductor of the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz. This season, he debuts with the Berlin Radio Symphony, the Minnesota and Pacific Symphony orchestras, and returns to Komische Oper Berlin, the Seoul Philharmonic, and the Milwaukee and Indianapolis Symphony orchestras. Working with young musicians has always been a priority for Maestro Francis. In addition to his tour with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada in 2015, Francis has made frequent visits to Miami's New World Symphony and the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland.

For the past 58 years, NYO Canada has enjoyed an iconic reputation as Canada's orchestral finishing school, providing the most comprehensive and in-depth training program available to our country's best young classical musicians. Approximately one third of Canadian professional orchestral musicians are alumni of NYO Canada. The orchestra auditions about five hundred students between the ages of 16 and 28 annually, from which 90-100 musicians are selected to participate in the summer training institute where they benefit from rigorous individual, sectional, chamber and orchestral instruction; training in health and injury prevention; and workshops ranging from audition techniques to the skills required to market one's musical career. The institute culminates in a cross-country tour as well as a recording session, with the audio available for sale to NYO Canada fans worldwide. NYO Canada's concert tours have included every major Canadian city as well as the United States, Europe, and Asia. In 1996, the delegates to the World Youth Orchestra Conference in Tokyo, who represented 39 countries, voted to award NYO Canada the title "Best Youth Orchestra in the World."

RELATED STORIES - Classical Music

Musical Explorers Family Concerts To Return To Carnegie Hall in January Photo
Musical Explorers Family Concerts To Return To Carnegie Hall in January

Musical Explorers Family Concerts return to Carnegie Hall on Saturday, January 13. Vibrant performances showcase Mele Hawai'i, Iraqi Folk, and Dominican Roots musical traditions.

Pythia Trio Presents THE THREE LEARS At Technopolis 20 Photo
Pythia Trio Presents THE THREE LEARS At Technopolis 20

'The Three Lears - Pythia Trio' explores the themes of power, truth, and family dynamics through the story of King Lear's daughters. This contemporary concert by Myrto Akrivou, Iro Menegou, and Thalia Papadopoulou combines piano and theatrical elements to create a unique musical experience. Catch the performance at Technopolis 20 on December 1, 2023.

Sony Classical To Release Lucas Debargues Next Album FAURES COMPLETE MUSIC FOR SOLO PIANO Photo
Sony Classical To Release Lucas Debargue's Next Album FAURE'S COMPLETE MUSIC FOR SOLO PIANO

Sony Classical is set to release Lucas Debargue's next album, featuring Fauré’s Complete Music for Solo Piano.

Brent Wallarabs The Gennett Suite Wins German Record Critics Award Photo
Brent Wallarab's 'The Gennett Suite' Wins German Record Critics Award

Composer and Indiana University Professor Brent Wallarab's “distinctly American masterpiece” The Gennett Suite performed by the Buselli-Wallarab Jazz Orchestra has been honored with a German Record Critics' Award as a recording of exceptional artistry and a best new release of 2023's fourth quarter.

More Hot Stories For You


Orchestre de Paris in Classical Music Orchestre de Paris
Carnegie Hall (3/16-3/16)
Antonio Sánchez in Classical Music Antonio Sánchez
Carnegie Hall (4/26-4/26)
Seong-Jin Cho in Classical Music Seong-Jin Cho
Carnegie Hall (5/17-5/17)
Yunchan Lim in Classical Music Yunchan Lim
Carnegie Hall (2/21-2/21)
Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra in Classical Music Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
Carnegie Hall (5/02-5/02)
Sō Percussion in Classical Music Sō Percussion
Carnegie Hall (12/02-12/02)
Junction Trio in Classical Music Junction Trio
Carnegie Hall (5/03-5/03)
Mahler Chamber Orchestra / Mitsuko Uchida in Classical Music Mahler Chamber Orchestra / Mitsuko Uchida
Carnegie Hall (3/28-3/28)
New York String Orchestra in Classical Music New York String Orchestra
Carnegie Hall (12/24-12/24)
Boston Symphony Orchestra in Classical Music Boston Symphony Orchestra
Carnegie Hall (1/29-1/29)