Academy Information

Orchestra North Academy


Photo: Elizabeth Larson

August 2018

More information coming soon…

Contact  for more information

The Orchestra North Academy is a professional development program affiliated with Orchestra North Summer Program. If you are an emerging professional with an interest in developing your skills, connections, or professional opportunities, see what we offer below!!

With an emphasis on providing opportunities and skill development for work in the north, our Academy Program provides selected players with professional exposure, and opportunities of professional networking, developing professional skills such as collaborating with one another and with professionals of all ages, organizing events, teaching, and performances, all while being mentored in performance and teaching by top professionals from around BC in a variety of ways throughout the week.

We invite applications from high-level musicians interested in developing orchestral and chamber experience while gaining opportunities and skills in leadership, teaching, and other skills that might help them pursue a career in the north. The intensive nature of this program lends itself to university-level players and graduates who are eager for exposure and development as professionals, to connect and collaborate with well established BC professionals, improve their skills, gain performance and teaching experience, and hone their abilities as performers and educators.

During the course of the Orchestra North Summer Program, Academy Players are immersed in a busy summer program leading sections, and performing and teaching alongside professional faculty of the Orchestra North Summer Program, while collaborating together to program, rehearse and perform an Academy chamber concert at the end of the week in the Spirit of the North Classical Music Festival. Following the festival, select ONSP faculty accompany Academy Players on tour in a chamber ensemble formation to perform a collaborative concert tour around the north. Academy Players are welcome to participate in the administrative side of the touring as well, preparing posters and programs, communicating with venues, interacting with media, audience members, and hosting organizations.

Accepted participants to the Orchestra North Academy receive full scholarships to cover tuition, valued at $1500 per participant, thanks to generous sponsorships. To facilitate personal connections in the north, billeting accommodation with a local community member in Smithers is arranged. Accepted participants are responsible for finding their own transportation to and from Smithers, but we can facilitate carpooling with people come from the same area. Depending on funding, a small stipend may be provided to Academy players as a per-diem.

The Orchestra North Academy is competitive program, and successful applicants will be invited in April. Interested applicants who are not offered a position in the Academy program may be invited to join Orchestra North as TA’s, depending on interest, experience, and suitability. Applicants to the Academy Program AND anyone interested being a TA are invited to contact for more information.

Teaching Opportunities

Academy players spend mornings during the Orchestra North Summer Program working alongside faculty to lead large ensemble, assisting and lead sectionals, and coaching chamber groups. Academy players will be matched up with a level of orchestra suitable to their interests.

Academy Chamber Ensembles

During the week of ONSP, Academy players collaborate together in chamber ensembles, coached by Orchestra North’s faculty, to program, rehearse, and prepare a concert in the Spirit of the North Chamber Music Festival.


Academy players receive the opportunity to collaborate closely with well-established BC professionals in the Orchestra North Symphony. Academy players usually sit assistant or associate to ONSP’s faculty, receiving mentorship and valuable professional connections. Further large ensemble opportunities include Strings and Wind ensembles, providing further opportunities for Academy wind players to develop skills mentoring and collaborating as they rehearse and perform with ONSP participants and faculty.

Workshops and Private Lessons

Time is given during the week of Orchestra North Summer Program for Academy players to participate in workshops of their chose. 2017 Workshops will include composition, conducting, improvisation, folk music arrangement, and more!

String academy players interested in teaching more beginning levels of players may be invited to assist with a beginning workshop.

Academy players may receive private lessons, upon request, with Orchestra North’s renowned faculty and guest artists.

Touring and Touring skill development

Following the week of the Orchestra North Summer Program is the 2017 Academy Tour of northern BC, which is led by select ONSP faculty. As touring skills and professional connections to the northern communities are the goal, Academy Players are invited also participate in the administrative side of the touring as well, including social media, preparing posters and programs, communicating with venues, and interacting with press. This tour is an incredible way to share meaningful musical experiences while experiencing first-hand the fantastic opportunities- and strong needs- for professional musicians in the north.

The Orchestra North Academy was created by professional musicians to provide the next generation of artists a meaningful way to connect their musical skills, interest, and education with real-life opportunities. 

Contact  for more information