GPAC Youth Symphony OrchestrA

GPAC Youth Symphony Orchestra (GYSO) was created to offer opportunities for young musicians across the Tri-State area to improve upon their technique, learn basic music theory, work with an ensemble and interact with professional guest artists performing at GPAC. 

GYSO was founded in 2009 by former GPAC Executive Director, Tania Castroverde Moskalenko and Music Director and Conductor, Pu-Qi Jiang.

In 2011, GYSO merged with the Mid South Young People's Orchestra and added two younger string ensembles, Mendelssohn String Orchestra and Mozart String Ensemble for students ages 7-14 years of age thus creating the GPAC Youth Symphony Orchestra Program. Each ensemble performs 2 concerts each season along with special access to master classes, workshops and performances with partners, The IRIS Orchestra and Concerts International.

Additionally, GYSO was named a Finalist in the American Prize Youth Orchestra national competition in 2012 along with taking two international performing and learning tours to China in 2011 and Europe in 2014. 

The GPAC Youth Symphony Program is dedicated to the highest standards of music and is open to career-oriented students as well as those who wish to study music for the pure enjoyment, inherent benefits of and appreciation for the art form.

Mozart String Ensemble

The Mozart String Ensemble is under the direction of Dr. Sheryl Lane for students 7-12 years of age with a beginner to intermediate level. Student placement is based on ability, talent and skill along with their age and maturity. Rehearsals are held Thursdays from 4:30 - 5:45 p.m.

Mendelssohn String Orchestra

The Mendelssohn String Orchestra is  under the direction of Long Long Kang for students 12-16 years of age with an intermediate to advanced level. Designed to hone their orchestral skills and further develop their abilities, this program prepares students to advance to the Youth Symphony Orchestra. Rehearsals are held Thursdays from 5:45 - 7 p.m.

Wind Ensemble

Wind Ensemble is a newly expanded ensemble made up of woodwind, brass and percussion students from across the Mid-South. The focus is to provide a high quality musical experience for its members built on fundamentals and musicianship through the great and ever-expanding concert repertoire only for wind ensemble. Under the direction of Jonathan Schallert, the Wind Ensemble rehearses from 12:30 - 1:30p.m. on Saturdays and then participates in the weekly music appreciation class from 1:30 - 2:30p.m.

GPAC Youth Symphony Orchestra

The GPAC Youth Symphony Orchestra is a full orchestra consisting of strings, winds, brass, percussion, harp, and keyboard. Admitted by audition, GYSO musicians are advanced students from 14-19 years of age and participate in weekly orchestra rehearsals, sectional rehearsals and weekly music appreciation class. In 2015-2016, GYSO will have the unique opportunity to participate with GPAC’s resident orchestra, IRIS Orchestra for special master classes with soloists and orchestra members. Students participate in a weekly music appreciation class from 1:30 - 2:30p.m. and rehearsal from 2:30 - 4p.m. at GPAC on Saturdays.

2018-2019 Concert Schedule

Sun. November 18 at 4pm
Sun. May 5 at 4pm

18-19 Calendar
Absence Form

2018-2019 Auditions

Audition Information
Audition Music
Register for Audition

Late Auditions will be held on August 18 from 10-1pm at GPAC. Currently, all flute positions are filled for 2018-2019 in the Youth Symphony. Audition registration deadline is August 10. 

Audition & Tuition Payment

Pay online

Payment Plan Agreement

Financial Aid

GPAC believes that finances should not prevent a motivated and talented student from participating in our youth symphony program. The GPAC Arts Education Fund provides tuition assistance to families each season. Financial aid is awarded based on many factors including family size, annual income and extraordinary situations. Please contact Emily Hefley for more information.

Financial Aid Application



Sheryl Lane (Orchestra Manager)

Emily Hefley (GYSP Director)                   901-751-7665

GYSP Staff Bios

Karis Ko Flute2 (1).jpg

Karis Ko is this year’s GPAC Youth Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition winner.  Karis, the daughter of Bo-Yoon and Jihye Ko, has been playing flute for 3 years under instructor, Mrs. Myung Kim.  She showed much potential from the beginning by placing 2nd place in Beethoven Club Young Artists Competition in both 2015 and 2016.  She was also one of the winners at Middle Tennessee State University’s Flute Festival in 2016.  In addition, she’s been selected to All West Tennessee Junior band in both years that she participated.  She also had an honor of playing at Merkin Concert Hall (Lincoln Center) in NY for winners concert for the International Grande Music Competition.

Karis is an 8th grader at Schilling Farms Middle School, and we anticipate bright future ahead for this young lady.