Youth Chamber Connection (YC²) offers chamber music education, enrichment, and performance opportunities to members of Three Rivers Young Peoples Orchestras (TRYPO), the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra (PYSO), City Music Center of Duquesne University (CMC), and other interested young musicians. YC² is administrated by TRYPO staff. All musicians (approx. ages 7-20) are welcome to apply, regardless of your affiliation. Our goal is to expose as many students as possible to the joy of playing chamber music!

YC² offers chamber music programs appropriate for the serious to casual musician. Browse the descriptions of our programs below, and we encourage all new and returning students to enroll in time to participate in our September Session.

Education Track

  • Designed for intermediate and beginning-level musicians - including members of Symphonette, Intrada, CMC, and other young musicians regardless of affiliation.
  • Work with a professional coach for 45 minutes weekly on recital repertoire. Coaches include faculty of CMC, TRYPO coaching staff, and other area music educators. 
  • Coachings are scheduled every Saturday, October through mid-May (holiday weeks excluded).
  • Perform in Winter and Spring recitals at Duquesne's PNC Recital Hall or in CMC Performance Class. 
  • Additional, optional, performance opportunities are available including performing pre-concert in the Heinz Hall lobby for the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra.
  • Included in your tuition is enrollment in our Community Connections Mini-Track (see below), participation is optional. 

Performance Track:

  • Designed for advanced-intermediate and advanced musicians - including members of YPO and PYSO, plus other interested young musicians regardless of affiliation.
  • Rehearse weekly for 90 minutes - 45 minutes with a professional coach and 45 minutes rehearsal with your group - preparing recital repertoire. Most coaches are members of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.
  • When possible, rehearsals are scheduled to coordinate with students' orchestra rehearsal (if applicable), October through mid-May (holiday weeks excluded):
    • on Saturdays at Duquesne University for YPO-level members
    • on Sundays in Downtown Pittsburgh for PYSO-level members
  • Performance Track students are expected to complete at least four performances each year; additional, optional, performances are available. 
  • Student groups have performed at special events at Heinz Field, the City-County Building, Benedum Center, the Governor's Mansion in Harrisburg, LaRoche College, Carnegie Museums, Phipps Conservatory, and Chatham College. 
  • Groups have performed on KDKA-TV, WQED-FM, and Saturday Light Brigade Radio.
  • Included in your tuition is enrollment in our Community Connections Mini-Track (see below), participation is optional. 

Community Connections Mini-Track:

  • Designed for students at all levels - beginning through advanced.
  • New members are welcome at any point during the school year (tuition will be pro-rated).
  • Community Connections is offered for no additional charge to all Education and Performance Track members, or you can register exclusively for this opportunity.
  • Students are invited several times each year to participate in a special community performance event - each will include pre-event coached rehearsal time. 
  • Students will prepare common repertoire, strengthen sight-reading skills, and have several opportunities to share their gift of music with the Pittsburgh community.
  • Advanced-level members will also be offered additional, optional, opportunities to perform with a pick-up chamber group or sub into a Performance Track group.
  • Community Connection members are encouraged to participate in a minimum of two performances.

Visit Schedule: Community Connections for schedule information. 

September Session

Our first September Session was a huge success! Fifty musicians participated in three weeks of rehearsals which culminated in our first Community Connection event, a collaboration with Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. Students were divided into small ensembles and performed at eight different neighborhood library branches to rave reviews!

YC² 2018-19: September Session will be held: September 8, 15 and 22, 2018. 

Placement Auditions

YC² welcomes young musicians at all playing levels. All will be offered a spot in a chamber group, provided we have a suitable grouping of students at a similar age, playing level, and schedule availability. Fall 2017-18, we were able to place 100% of students who registered during our placement period. 

Pre-Formed Ensembles

Pre-formed and partially-formed ensembles are welcome to register, and YC² will work with the group to fill the remaining seats. For the 2018-19 year, all members of a pre-formed group must be registered by September 15, 2018. Beyond that date, if a seat is open, YC² reserves the right to fill the seat with a qualified, registered student on our waiting list.  

Chamber groups formed within a high-school music program are welcome, and are encouraged to remain together as a YC² group - provided a suitable coaching time works for everyone's weekend schedule.

Ensembles wishing to remain together from the previous school year should inform YC² at the time of registration. YC² staff will consult to ensure that another year together will provide the best educational experience for all. 

Disclaimer: YC will make best efforts but may not be able to match all interested students into a chamber group due to the unavailability of a suitable match - while rare, when it does occur it has been primarily due to students' schedules.