Junior String Ensemble
The Junior String Ensemble is QYO’s youngest orchestra with 65 positions available to string players aged up to 15 years. Conductor Chen Yang programs a wide range of repertoire including his own arrangements of orchestral works, opera arias and ballet music. JSE performs in three Concerts at Twilight at the Old Museum Concert Hall and the QYO Finale Concert at QPAC. Extra concerts, workshops and short tour may also be included in the year's concert activities. For JSE, positions are offered ‘within the section’ and seating orders are arranged by the conductor within the first few rehearsals and finalised at camp. Section leaders may be informed of their positions upon offers.
- 65-member string orchestra
- Standard string repertoire & advanced arrangements
- Conductor: Chen Yang (since 1991)
- Rehearsals: Saturdays 8.45-11.30am at the Old Museum Building
- Weekend music camp: QCCC Brookfield, Friday 8 to Sunday 10 February 2019
- Violin min. AMEB Grade 5 (guide only)
- Viola & cello min. AMEB Grade 4 (guide only)
- Double bass min. AMEB Grade 2 (guide only)
- Maximum age limit as at 31 December 2019: 15 years
- Violin 1 (18), violin 2 (18), viola (12), cello (14), double bass (8)
Chen Yang has had a long association with Queensland Youth Orchestras. He first joined as a violinist in 1975 and was concertmaster of QYS from 1978 to 1980, touring with the orchestra in 1980 to Europe, including the International Festival of Youth Orchestras in Aberdeen, Scotland. Attributing these positive QYO musical experiences as a major influence in choosing music as a career, Chen studied at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music and graduated with distinction in violin performance.
As his first professional musical undertaking, Chen was the Concertmaster of the Queensland Theatre Orchestra (later renamed the Queensland Philharmonic Orchestra), working under the distinguished Maestro, Georg Tintner. In 1981 Chen joined the Queensland Symphony Orchestra where he played in the first violin section until 1989.
Deciding on a change, Chen spent the next spent two years as musician-in-residence on Dunk Island Holiday Resort in North Queensland where he led a string quartet and performed as a cabaret violinis. He continued as a freelance musician throughout the early 1990s, performing in show orchestras for many major musical productions at QPAC.
Chen is the leader and conductor of The Sinfonia of St Andrew’s orchestra and is the string teacher and conductor at St Hilda’s School, Southport. He adjudicates regularly for eisteddfods and competitions and is also a prolific arranger of string music for the Junior String Ensemble. Chen was the conductor of QYO3 from 1983 to 1988 and since 1991 has been the conductor of the Junior String Ensemble.