Youth Orchestras

Welcome to YOW !  Meeting on Friday nights during term time, our senior orchestra comprises more than 50 young people playing at around Grade 5 or above.

Meet the Conductor, Tim Carpenter

Meet the Concert leader, Sarah Cathcart

Youth Orchestra membership subscription:

Joining fee $50 (includes branded merchandise)

Fee per term $50

About us:

  • Tim Carpenter is our principal conductor.
  • We have a team of tutors, with at least one of these at every rehearsal.  This group comprises current teachers who are also excited about growing the talent in our region.
  • We are developing an agreement with HCCM to work in more closely with the Youth Sinfonia for younger musicians.
  • We have wonderful support from our sponsors and funders who are enthusiastic about this next stage of growth for youth orchestral music and are committed to supporting OCT as the hub for this activity.
  • Rehearsals are at the Hinemoa Rehearsal Rooms on Friday nights. Its a wonderful spot for our rehearsals as there is lots of space and parking, as well as a social area (and of course all the chairs and instruments are stored right there so are easy to access).
  • The  2019 schedule of activity can be found here on the website and Facebook page –  it includes a camp, weekly rehearsals, and three concerts.  There are social activities, sectionals, and the youth orchestra members attend NZSO and Opus concerts as a group. If they want to, musicians can take part in in other OCT activity including the Sunset Symphony, Sensing Music and our children’s education concerts.
  • From 2019, new members will be required to undertake a short audition.
  • We are thrilled to be partnering with the WEL Energy Trust and New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, to provide free entry for YOW members to the NZSO’s Hamilton concerts.

To comply with Health and Safety Law, we are required to obtain Police and CYF vetting reports for all adults who are in contact with, or hold responsibility for young people under 18.  

This law is for people who are supervising and/or interacting with children. For YOW this means conductors, tutors, helpers at rehearsals and concerts, and any adults who are coming along to practices to support the activity of the Orchestra. We would encourage parents/guardians to start this process when enrolling their child.  

Download the pvs-vetting-request-and-consent-form

Sign up for our newsletter

Registration form, parent permission and code of conduct

Please return forms at rehearsals, or email to

Learn more about joining our orchestras


In 2017 Rupert D’Cruze was appointed Artistic Director, Community Music.  This gives Rupert overall responsibility for the artistic/music direction of not only Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra (where he is also Principal Conductor), but also our youth orchestra and the Rusty Player Orchestra.  This appointment is part of Orchestras Central;s commitment to growing the ecosystem of orchestral music in our region, and our vision for ‘orchestrating’  transformative connections in our community through music.

We are indebted to Wintec design student Michelle Botting who has created our amazing branding and images. Thank you Michelle!

We look forward to sharing this fantastic journey with you!!

Our wonderful supporters and partners