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The LYO was founded in 1958 and provides an extraordinary experience for young musicians. It is made up of several orchestras and ensembles. Students advance based on ability and areas of interest. The LYO includes student musicians from diverse schools and counties in the Louisville and southern Indiana metro area. Performance opportunities take place from September through May each year.

Visit our Audition page via the green button above. We hope you sign up to audition for the 2021-2022 season! Please also check out the LYO video and past season highlights.

We believe in the LYO mission of providing a musical experience of the highest quality for ALL dedicated young musicians and to provide meaningful and artistic education programs for young audiences throughout our diverse communities. LYO musicians are required to participate in their school instrumental music programs and take private music instruction. Financial scholarships for instruction are available and awarded based on need. 

As an important safety measure for the new season, the LYO staff and student musicians will wear masks and, if appropriate, use bell covers until further notice. This page will include more complete information and updates on protocols and/or distancing before rehearsals begin in September.

Alissa Brody Named Executive Director

Louisville, Ky. (July 8, 2021): The Louisville Youth Orchestra (LYO) announced today that Alissa Brody will become the new Executive Director, effective July 12, 2021.


Ms. Brody comes to the LYO with experience in orchestra administration, communications, and music education.  She has a passion for working with youth and is dedicated to making an impact in the music community. Her love of orchestras and youth arts ensembles spans back to her own involvement as a youth orchestra flutist in Minnesota. She will use her experience in the performing arts and arts administration to provide high-quality, accessible opportunities for student musicians in Louisville.


Prior to her appointment with the LYO, Brody served as Artistic Coordinator and Assistant to the Music Director at the Louisville Orchestra, where she was a member of the Artistic Operations team. She also recently served as Communications Manager with the Louisville Academy of Music


and as an advisor in the Office of Careers and Professional Development at the Institute for Music Leadership. Ms. Brody is an accomplished music educator and conductor and has been involved with summer enrichment programs ranging from instrumental and choral music to jazz and musical theatre.


“The LYO’s Board of Directors is delighted to find in Alissa Brody that rare combination of professional musical performance, concert production expertise, and a passion for music education. Rising to the top of a thorough five-month search that attracted candidates nationwide, Alissa impressed us every step of the way with her charisma, energy, enthusiasm, community connections and arts management experience,” said Evelyn Loehrlein, President of the Louisville Youth Orchestra Board of Directors.


Ms. Brody will work alongside LYO Music Director Doug Elmore to provide an extraordinary musical experience for its members.  “I am thrilled to welcome Alissa to the LYO family,” said Maestro Elmore.  “Her experience in arts administration, combined with her passion for working with youth in music are a perfect combination to help the organization continue to grow.”


“I am very pleased to be joining this organization, which has such a rich history of providing exceptional music education to students in our community,” said Alissa Brody, Executive Director of the Louisville Youth Orchestra.  “I look forward to building on the traditions while working to ensure a meaningful experience to all LYO musicians.”


The LYO is preparing for the upcoming season and will hold auditions in September.  For more information about the LYO or to find out more about the audition process, please visit

An extraordinary season during a difficult time

The COVID-19 pandemic forced the LYO to cancel the final months of our 2019-20 season and to follow thoughtful, effective, and compliant plans for the 2020-21 season. The following are excerpts from concerts in the 2020-2021 season. Specialized masks were developed for various instruments, wind and brass instruments were fitted with bell covers. There was increased distancing for some instrumental sections, and a rented performance venue provided ample ventilation.


And They're Off!
Floyd Central High School, Sunday, April 25 at 4:00

The Louisville Youth Orchestra culminated its 62nd consecutive season with a live, in-person performance at Floyd Central High School located at 6575 Old Vincennes Road, Georgtown, IN on Sunday, April 25.  This event showcased all of our ensembles - Renaissance Orchestra, Camerata Strings, Esprit Strings, Wind Ensemble, Brass Ensemble and Percussion Ensemble - presenting an array of popular, fun-filled works.  The concert - aptly named And They're Off! - honored our graduating seniors as they begin the next chapter of their lives and Melody Welsh-Buchholz's retirement after 35 years of service as our Executive Director.

Special presentations were made to our graduating seniors and to Melody Welsh Buchholz who retired after 35 years as Executive Director of the LYO.

AndTheyreOff - 4x6.jpg

All LYO ensembles performed to a capacity audience.  This was the first (and only) live audience of the season due to the covid pandemic.

American Masters
Marriott East, March 7, 2021

The LYO's second Classical Concert this season was packed with extraordinary music and talent.  It's unfortunate that such a magnificent concert could not have a live audience audience due to COVID-19 restrictions.  Fortunately, however, a DVD video recording was available.

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Meg Martin, violin

Click for biography

The Camerata String Orchestra, Chris Lerner, conductor, presented Vivaldi's Concerto No. 2 and featured Meg Martin, violin soloist who was a winner in this season's LYO Concerto Competition.

The Espirit String Orchestra, Robert Dixon, conductor, presented the First Movement of Dvorák's Symphony No. 9 and Gm2 (Greensleeves Millennium 2), a composition by Shirl Jae Atwell, Louisville Composer and an LYO conductor very early in her remarkable career.

Camerata String Orchestra

Concerto No. 2 / Vivaldi

Meg Martin, violin

Espirit String Orchestra

Symphony No. 9 / Dvorak

First movement

The Renaissance Orchestra, Doug Elmore, conductor, presented John Williams' "Krypton Fanfare" from Superman, arranged by Ian Elmore, performed by The Renaissance Brass and conducted by David F. Borman III, LYO's University of Louisville Graduate Conducting Assistant. 

The Renaissance Orchestra also presented Thelonious Monk's 'Round Midnight featuring The Renaissance Strings, Christian Howes, violin, Michael Hyman, drumset, and Joshua Lowery, piano.  We are extremely pleased to welcome Christian Howes who is well known for his stunning talent as a jazz violinist and his commitment to music education.

Photo Christian Howes (2).jpg

Christian Howes also performed as soloist in Scott Routenberg's Blue Reel movement from the Concerto for Jazz Violin and Orchestra.

Renaissance Orchestra

Concerto for Jazz Violin and Orchestra

Scott Routenberg

Blue Reel - Christian Howes, violin

Olivia Hodge Picture.jpg

Olivia Hodge, violin

Click for biography

The Renaissance Orchestra also performed the first movement of the Brahms Concerto for Violin and Orchestra featuring Olivia Hodge, violin, who was a winner in this season's LYO Concerto Competition.


The concert concluded with Morton Gould's American Salute, the irresistible melody to When Johnny Comes Marching Home, conducted by Ian Elmore, staff conductor.


Renaissance Orchestra

Concerto for Violin and Orchestra / Brahms

First Movement - Olivia Hodge, violin

Renaissance Orchestra

Ian Elmore, Staff Conductor

American Salute / Morton Gould

Old and New Friends
Marriott East, March 14, 2021

On the following Sunday a second Classical Concert was presented featuring LYO's extraordinary instrumental ensembles, listed alphabetically below.  These performances are included on the same DVD with those from the American Masters concert on March 7.


The Brass Ensemble conducted by John Little played three cherished pieces:  the Brahms Hungarian Dance No.5, Handel's "Air" from Water Music, and Prince of Denmark's March by Jeremiah Clark.

The Percussion Ensemble, conducted by Mark Tate, played six selections beginning with Shostakovich's Festive Overture and Two Movements from Hary Janos by Zoltan Kodaly.  They also performed two Spanish dances:  Villanesca by Enrique Granados and Miller's Dance by Manuel DeFalla.  The ensemble also performed engaging selections from Carmina Carl Orff.  (All of the aforementioned pieces were arranged by Mark Tate.)  They concluded with the stirring Dance of the Tumblers from The snow Maiden by Rimsky-Korsakov.

The Wind Ensemble, conducted by Brandon Bell, performed three challenging works:  Bach's Two Part Invention #4, Ravel's Pavane Pour Une Infante Defunte, and Scherzo for Three Saxophones by Arthur Frachenpohl (arranged by Brandon Bell).

Click here for a printable copy of the entire concert program.

Brass Ensemble

Water Music - Air / Handel

Percussion Ensemble

Festival Overture / Shostakovich

Wind Ensemble

Pavane Pour Une Infante Defunte / Ravel

Espirit String Orchestra / 12/13/2020

Frosty's Caribbean Holiday

Steve Nelson & Jack Rollins / .arr. Ralph Ford

Camerata String Orchestra / 12/13/2020

Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer

Johnny Marks / arr. Erick Morales

Holiday Concert
Marriott East, December 13, 2020

Percussion Ensemble / 12/13/2020

YO! Christmas Tree

arr. Chris Crockarell

Brass Ensemble / 12/13/2020

Angels We Have Heard on High

arr. Victor Lopez

Wind Ensemble / 12/13/2020

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

Traditional English Carol / arr. Jeremy Corcoran

Classical Concert
Marriott East, November 12, 2020

Renaissance Orchestra / November 12, 2020
Fra Diavolo - Overture / David Auber

Camerata Orchestra / November 12, 2020
Playful Pizzacato / Benjamin Britton

Thank You for Your Support!


Online contributions are greatly appreciated.  You can charge a gift of any amount to most bank cards or to PayPal.  Click the Donate button to begin a secure transaction.  If you prefer, you can also set up a monthly recurring donation charged to PayPal.  See more ways to help on the Be a Patron page.  Please designate any preference in how your donation is acknowledged.


The Louisville Youth Orchestra has met the Better Business Bureau’s 20 Standards for Charity Accountability and is a BBB Accredited Charity.  Click here to view the LYO’s full charity report.

The Louisville Youth Orchestra thanks the following individuals, foundations and corporations for their support of our 62nd season.

Harmony ($250-$499)

Jessica Caballero *

Swapna & Manoj Chandran +

Michelle Cull +

J Scott Carothers Living Trust


Kevin & Ellie Pots +

Jothi & Jayaram Ravinshankar

Russell Saunders

Melanie Vittitow

Melody ($100-$249)
Amy Beth Inc.

Joe Blitkzo

John Buchino
Sharon David

Nancy Drye

Gene P. Gardner

GE Foundation

June Hampe

Hathaway & Clark Funeral Home

Rodney Henderson

Emily Liu

Rebecca Maddox
Pamela Mullins

Nick & Susan Nicholson

Renaissance Charitable Foundation
Bruce & Marcia Roth
Milan & Carol Savkovich

Raymond & Jessica Schaff

Christy Elaine Schneider *

Mr. & Mrs. Peter Tanguay

Jeanne Vuturo
Camille Wagner

Symphony ($10,000 +)
Parent Network
The Cory Foundation

Concerto ($5,000-$9,999)
Ed Klein

Fanfare ($1,000-$4,999)
JCPS Employees *
Evelyn Loehrlein & Sidney King

Paul & Judy Shoemaker
Melody Welsh & Dennis Buchholz

Rhapsody ($500-$999)


Megan Renwick & Norm Epley

Brent & Glenda Garrett

Jan Hunter
Ben Keeton
Kroger Merchant Program

Janet Leon +

Scott T. Meyer

John McCall
Medical News

Northrop Equine

Republic Bank
Ty and Mary Richardson +

Susan J Herlin Charitable Fund

The Bouchard Family +
Vessels-Conrad Charitable Gift Fund

Prelude (up to $99)
Carolyn Altstadt

Robert & Jan Gray

Marie Haley

Cindy Jacobs

Reed & Janice Martin

Jeff McCaffrey *

Linda Ratti
Kristina Richards *


In-Kind Services
Louisville Ballet

Fund for the Arts Partnership Gift *
Family Sponsorship Gift +

The LYO depends on the generosity of patrons to make programming possible. We are grateful to all private contributors as well as the following agencies for helping to make this season successful:

The Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, provides operating support to the Louisville Youth Orchestra with state tax dollars and federal funding from the National Endowment for the Arts..

The Louisville Youth Orchestra is made possible in part with the support from the generous donors to the Fund For The Arts.

The League of American Orchestras is dedicated to helping orchestras meet the challenges of the 21st century.

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