Philharmonic Orchestra is a full symphonic orchestra composed of over 100 junior and senior high musicians whose auditions show musicality and advanced technical skills. Providing a concentrated learning and performing experience for aspiring young musicians, Philharmonic Orchestra performs increasingly challenging classical repertoire throughout the year. Members of the Philharmonic Orchestra are exposed to the best of classical music to foster a professional attitude. Individual progress is expected and recognized through chair auditions and Principal solos.  Professional musicians are brought in periodically to coach sectionals. Philharmonic Orchestra has performed throughout the state, including the SW Youth Orchestra Festival at NAU in Flagstaff, the AMEA convention and in California, Germany, England, China, Austria and the Czech Republic.

Grades

Junior and senior high

Ensemble Fee

$725

Rehearsals

Wednesday evenings, 6:30-9:00 pm

Central High School
4525 N Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85012

Conductor

Julie Desbordes

Ensemble Music Level of Difficulty: Performs literature such as: Bizet L’Arlesienne Suite # 2, Berlioz Roman Carnival Overture, Saint-Saens Bacchanale from Samson and Delilah, and Dvorak Symphony #8.

Audition Window Closed

The 1st and 2nd Round Entrance Audition windows are closed. We are accepting ongoing audition applications on a case-by-case basis. Please visit our Contact page and choose “Auditions”.

Audition Components

You may take separate videos of each component. If you are able, it is preferred that the three videos should be edited together into one video, not to exceed 10 minutes, before uploaded to the Dropbox. Video files should be submitted. YouTube links are not accepted. If you’d like to upload your files separately, please make sure, they are each labeled as described in your confirmation email.

Solo

Solo of your choice. Please perform a total of 3:00 minutes of music from the work. The piece can be longer than 3 minutes but the judges reserve the right to stop listening at the 3 minute mark.

Scales
  • Strings – 3 octave major and melodic minor.
  • Winds and Brass – 2 major, 1 minor and chromatic scale-covering the entire range of the instrument.

On the major and minor scales, you may perform as many octaves as you are able. The greater range will receive a higher difficulty score. However, a well-played scale, no matter the difficulty, is best.

These are the only requirements specified by conductors. You may record your scales as soon as you are ready. Only String Orchestra and Prelude strings will have specific scales sent the night before.

Orchestral Excerpt

WE STRONGLY SUGGEST THAT YOU LISTEN TO RECORDING OF THE ORCHESTRAL WORKS THAT YOU ARE REQUIRED TO PREPARE.  

Should you feel the excerpts are above your abilities and have already signed up to audition for Philharmonic Orchestra, please contact Corinn Moreno to change your first group preference. Please be aware that this will likely change the time of your audition, so contact Corinn Moreno as soon as possible.

Download Excerpts

Click here to download excerpts for Philharmonic Orchestra

Questions?

If you are interested in Philharmonic Orchestra and would like more information or have questions, please click the “Learn More!” button below to let us know you are interested and we will contact you soon.

Learn More!

Julie Desbordes

Julie Desbordes

Conductor, Philharmonic Orchestra

Multidimensional conductor Julie Desbordes leads ensembles in the Americas, Asia, and her native France. Pre-COVID guest conducting appearances included performances with orchestras in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, Venezuela and Cuba. Since the onset of the pandemic, she has taught orchestral musicians, music educators, and young conductors online and now also in-person, developing innovations that bring meaning and impact to music making and community building.

Ms. Desbordes made her conducting debut at age 17 and is currently Music Director of the Philharmonia Orchestra at Arizona State University, where she also teaches conducting. Previously based in New York and Baltimore, she led two groundbreaking, inclusive orchestras in New York City: the Queer Urban Orchestra and the Turtle Bay Youth Orchestra.

Also a leader in the El Sistema movement, she was a featured cast member in the documentary film, Crescendo! The Power of Music, directed by Jamie Bernstein, and is a frequent guest conductor and teaching artist at El Sistema programs internationally, as well as being a teaching artist mentor for Carnegie Hall’s Music Educators Workshops since 2019.

As a conductor and an educator, Ms. Desbordes passionately develops new audiences for concert music as she leads diversity and inclusion efforts. In Arizona, her Philharmonia Orchestra collaborates with dancers, incorporates video content into concerts, presents music by underrepresented composers, and consistently delivers performances that excite seasoned and new audiences alike.

Ms. Desbordes holds Master and Bachelor degrees in conducting and trumpet performance from conservatoires in France and Canada. She will soon complete her Doctor of Musical Arts degree in orchestral conducting at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore. Her conducting mentors have included Raffi Armenian, Gustav Meier and Marin Alsop.

Entrance Audition Application

Audition Window Closed

The 1st and 2nd Round Entrance Audition windows are closed. We are accepting ongoing audition applications on a case-by-case basis. Please visit our Contact page and choose “Auditions”.

Interested? Want to learn more about this ensemble?

If you are interested in Philharmonic Orchestra and would like more information or have questions, please click the “Learn More!” button below to let us know you are interested and we will contact you soon.

Learn More!