Audition Requirements

EPSYO auditions are for standard orchestral instruments and are held throughout the year. There are a limited number of positions available in each ensemble, and an audition does not guarantee placement in EPSYO.

Acceptance and orchestra placement is a competitive, merit-based process in which auditionees must meet requirements for consideration.

For any questions, concerns, or feedback, please feel free to contact the EPSYO Office by phoning (915) 525-8978.


Before getting started, you may have questions about the program and/or the appropriate ensemble for you. Please visit our FAQs page for answers to questions before proceeding.

Audition tips

Tips on how to prepare for your audition!

Practice, practice, practice! Audition judges may ask any candidate to sight-read so be prepared.

Most auditions are approximately 3–5 minutes long except percussion. Percussion auditions are approximately 10 minutes long.

Listen to recordings of the excerpts and ask your teachers for assistance in preparation.

Learn about the musical context and technical concepts of the excerpts to demonstrate these in your audition performances.

The assessment

The panel consists of EPSYO conductors who rank each audition by assessing the following:

  • Intonation, rhythm, dynamics, articulation (staccato & sautillé bowings for strings; legato & tonguing for wind and brass), and tone production.
  • Musical style and attention to directions of the music
  • Conductor’s comments on orchestral skills and attendance record (for ongoing members only)

Excerpts can be downloaded below and students are encouraged to meet with a private instrument teacher to properly prepare their solo and scales.

Excerpt Downloads

Auditions require that students prepare the specific excerpt(s) listed for the orchestra for which they are auditioning. 

Auditions will also include a one-minute solo of their choice, and scales as listed.

Please check back soon for the 2024-2025 audition requirements!

El Paso Youth String Philharmonic (YSP)

El Paso Youth String Ensemble (YSE)

El Paso Youth Symphony (YS)

El Paso Youth Orchestra (YO)