Posted on August 28, 2020

Youth Orchestra Commissioning Initiative

In response to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, the Metropolitan Youth Symphony (MYS), the New Jersey Youth Symphony (NJYS), and the Portland Youth Philharmonic (PYP) are teaming up and inviting youth orchestras across the country to take part in a new collaborative project. The Youth Orchestra Commissioning Initiative (YOCI), designed to create remote performances of new works by women and composers of color, strives to connect young musicians with composers who will write new, short chamber music pieces for groups of diverse instrumentation to rehearse and perform from musicians’ individual homes.

A primary goal of this initiative is to address the systemic exclusion of composers of color and women from the standard classical repertoire, by showcasing new music produced under this
initiative composed primarily by professionals identifying with those groups. The current lineup of involved composers includes Efraín Amaya, Laura Brackney, Regina Carter, Giancarlo Castro D’Addona, Darrell Grant, Deena T Grossman, Gustavo Larrea, Jessica Meyer, Polina Nazaykinskaya, Bernardo Quesada, James M. Stephenson, and more. A full list of composers and their bios can be found at

To learn more and join the consortium, visit: