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Student Handbook
2021-2022 Season

Louisville Youth Orchestra

P.O. Box 997
Louisville, Kentucky 40201-0997

The LYO business office and some rehearsal space are located in the St Matthews Pavilion at 4121 Shelbyville Rd, 2nd floor. We share the space with the Louisville Ballet School.

The LYO office is located in the St. Matthews Pavilion at 4121 Shelbyville Road. Rehearsals take place at the Youth Performing Arts School or St. Matthews Pavilion, as well as some alternate locations when scheduling conflicts arise with our venues.


It shall be the purpose of the LYO to provide a musical experience of the highest quality for all dedicated young musicians and to provide artful and meaningful education programs for audiences throughout our diverse communities regardless of race, creed, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation or economic circumstances.


The LYO invites all young musicians up to age 21 to audition.

  • Membership for any LYO ensemble shall be decided via audition. Playing ability and balance of instrumentation are the determining factors in selection of members. Membership is not automatically renewed.

  • LYO members are required to participate in their school instrumental music program (orchestra or band). Home-schooled and students who attend schools that do not have a school band or orchestra are exempt.

  • All members are required to take private music lessons.

Member Rules & Responsibilities

Safety for our members, parents and audience are priority one during this difficult time. A set of guidelines will be in place to protect the wellbeing of all associated with the LYO and posted on the LYO website. Please adhere to these guidelines in order to make our venues a secure place for all.


  • It is the player’s responsibility to have their music folder with them at all rehearsals and performances.

  • Horizons, Serenade Orchestra, and Concert Orchestra members are expected to bring a wire stand to all rehearsals.

  • Members are required to have a pencil at all times.

  • Respectful behavior is always expected.

  • Attendance will be taken in your rehearsal room precisely at the start of any published rehearsal or performance time. IF YOU ARE NOT IN YOUR SEAT AND READY TO PLAY YOU WILL BE COUNTED ABSENT!   If you are late for any reason, you must check in with your Co- Site Manager immediately upon arrival. Not checking in means you will be counted absent.


  • EMAIL your Co-Site Manager at least ONE WEEK in advance of any known future absence. For day-of rehearsal emergencies or illness EMAIL your Co-Site Manager by 11 am.

  • Check the LYO website and your e-mail frequently for scheduling changes and updates.

  • No refreshments in rehearsal rooms or concert halls.

  • No member is allowed to leave the area during breaks.

  • Music in the LYO folder is the responsibility of the player. Players must report missing music to the librarian. Repeated loss of music will result in being charged $.50 per page for lost copies.

  • No electronic devices during rehearsal except those used for tuning.

  • Concert dress is expected to be worn at all dress rehearsals.

All fees associated with the LYO are non-refundable.

Parent/Guardian Rules and Responsibilities

Parents/Guardians are expected to be on-site for member pickup at the end of rehearsals/performances. Members left waiting after activities are finished cost the LYO extra custodial fees and are imposing upon LYO staff members’ time.


Attendance Policy

In keeping with the purpose of the LYO to provide a quality musical experience, it is the belief of the staff that ALL students are responsible to their colleagues, their conductor, themselves, and ultimately to the music itself. Therefore, as a member of LYO, it is the responsibility of each and every member to:

  1. attend all rehearsals and performances

  2. be in their seats at the start of rehearsal time assessment

  3. have practiced and prepared the music between each rehearsal

  4. report absences in a timely manner


As a member of LYO, you are making a serious commitment to your orchestra/ensemble. The ensemble’s success is dependent on regular attendance from EVERYONE. When you miss a rehearsal, not only are you missing out on important musical details, you are also creating a void in the ensemble that cannot be filled. It doesn’t matter if you are sick, have an academic competition, on a school trip, or on vacation. If you’re not there, you’re not there. We do, however, understand that other important events and commitments on Sunday afternoons are going to occasionally happen. Therefore, we expect that each member will use their judgment wisely and honor their obligation to the LYO when making important decisions about other activities. With that in mind, the following guidelines will be enforced:

  1. Every LYO member is permitted a maximum of FOUR (4) ABSENCES per season. Beyond this, members will lose their membership without a refund. Mandatory school band/orchestra performances (as opposed to elected/volunteer activities such as school musicals, pep band or non-required trips) which conflict with Sunday LYO rehearsals (with the exception of an LYO dress rehearsal) will NOT count toward your four absences.* A school performance absence form must be turned in to your Site Manager at least ONE week in advance for this exemption to be honored. These performances must be on the same instrument you play in LYO.

  2. * If a member has at least one excused school performance absence, the maximum total number of absences they can have for the entire LYO season is FIVE (5). After five, that member will lose their membership without a refund.

  3. Every LYO member is allowed a maximum of TWO (2) ABSENCES per November and March Classical Concert cycles. Each member is allowed a maximum of ONE (1) ABSENCE for the December and April Pops Concert cycles. If you exceed those limits, you will not be permitted to play in that particular concert. You will still be able to participate in the remainder of the season.


  5. Known absences must be reported to your Site Manager at least ONE week in advance via EMAIL. Day-of emergencies or illness should be reported to your Site Manager via EMAIL no later than 11 am on the day of the missed rehearsal.

  6. Two tardies count as one absence. A tardy means you are not in your seat by the official written start time of your rehearsal OR you leave early. You need to commit to a full rehearsal in order to maintain a good attendance record. An absence or tardy will still go on your record even if you inform your director of the circumstances.

It is our hope that each member can participate in all of the concerts. If you know you will not be able to adhere to #3 or #4 for a particular concert, please let us know as early as possible so that we can make arrangements to cover your part if necessary.

Tours and Associated Costs

The LYO occasionally plans tours/retreats/educational activities for its members. Members involved will be assessed additional fees above the usual membership fees during these years. Limited scholarships may be offered for those members in need of assistance.


Percussion Ensemble Rules

Percussionists are required to have their personal folder with them at all rehearsals and performances. All percussionists are required to assist with the moving of percussion equipment to/from concert locations. Any member who does not actively participate may be dismissed from the LYO at the discretion of the Music Director and/or Percussion Ensemble Conductor.


Concert Dress

The following dress code is required for concerts. Attire which detracts from the music is considered unacceptable and is not professional. Deviation may result in a player not being allowed to participate in that performance. Decisions in this regard are at the discretion of the LYO staff. Please refrain from perfume, cologne, or scented aftershave.

Formal Dress (Concert Black) - All Orchestras:

Black short/long sleeved shirts or collared dress shirts.

Black dress pants or skirts. If worn, skirts must be at least knee-length when seated. Black closed-toe dress shoes with black socks or nylons.

No clothing with slits, holes, cutouts, or revealing attire will be permitted.

No excessive jewelry or visually distracting accessories. Attire will be checked by staff at dress rehearsal. Students will be required to correct any violations before being allowed to take the stage for performance.


Informal Dress - All Orchestras: Designated LYO T-shirt and jeans, or as directed. No shorts or flip-flops.

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