top of page
*High Res Facing Audience.jpg

ABOUT US

President:
Captain Sir Norman Lloyd-Edwards KCVO, RD*, JP, RNR

  

Conductor Laureate:
Dr. Alun Francis

  

Music Director:
Eric W Phillips MBE

09.jpg

The Cardiff County and Vale of Glamorgan Youth Orchestra (formerly the South Glamorgan Youth Orchestra) was founded in 1975.

  

The orchestra rehearses weekly, during term time, at Whitchurch High School on the outskirts of Cardiff. We currently have 110 members aged 13 to 22. 

The Youth Orchestra, the senior of four symphony orchestras which meet weekly under the umbrella of the Cardiff County and Vale of Glamorgan Music Service, is aimed at musicians who are Grade 6 standard or above. The orchestra rehearses on Friday evenings during the school term, holds termly residential/non-residential weekend courses and performs three concerts at prestigious venues in Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan annually. The orchestra also undertakes a 10 day tour in Europe biennially and has been on many highly successful concert tours including those to Stuttgart, Arhensburg, Vienna, Edinburgh, Italy and the Czech Republic.

The staff of the orchestra are drawn from the Cardiff County and Vale of Glamorgan Music Service assisted by a team of leading professional musicians from the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera who take sectional rehearsals.

William Tell Overture
00:00 / 03:30
Scheherazade Mvmt 4
00:00 / 02:43
Rachmaninov Largo
00:00 / 04:42
Rachmaninov Adagio
00:00 / 03:59
Rachmaninov Allegro molto
00:00 / 03:32
Scheherazade Mvmt 1
00:00 / 03:21
hedi-benyounes-yo6EVHz7oWw-unsplash copy

ORCHESTRA HISTORY & ORCHESTRAL TOURS

1975
South Glamorgan Youth Orchestra founded by Walter Gerhardt in conjunction with the Welsh College of Music and Drama

1977

Frank Kelleher appointed Principal Conductor

1984

Schools Prom - Royal Albert Hall

1982
First foreign tour to Stuttgart and Hamburg

1986

Major foreign tour to Hungary

1985

Jeffrey Lloyd appointed Principal Conductor

1990

Dr Alun Francis (Berlin Symphony Orchestra) appointed Conductor Laureate

1990
Schools Prom - Royal Albert Hall

1995

20th anniversary concert: Mahler Symphony No.2 “Resurrection”

1993

Eric Phillips succeeds Jeffrey Lloyd as Principal Conductor

1996

First visit to the Edinburgh Festival of British Youth Orchestras

1996

Following Local Government reorganisation the South Glamorgan Youth Orchestra becomes the Cardiff County and Vale of Glamorgan Youth Orchestra

1998

Placed joint second at the International Youth and Music Festival, Vienna

1999

Winners of the Boosey and Hawkes Youth Orchestra Award at the 20th Edinburgh Festival of British Youth Orchestras

2000

Millennium Concert: Richard Strauss Alpine Symphony

2002

Winners of a major Sainsbury’s Youth Orchestra Award

2002
Invited to perform at the International Festival of Youth Orchestras, Florence

2004

Tour to Riva del Garda, Salo and Vipiteno Festivals in Italy

2005

30th anniversary concert: Richard Strauss Also Sprach Zarathustra

2008

Tour to Slovakia and the Czech Republic

2010

Italy tour: Negrar, Redondesco, Asiago

2012

Italy tour: Perugia, Montecatini, Florence

2015

40th anniversary concert: Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique

2014
Italy tour: Bastia Umbra, Passignano, Perugia

2016

Italy tour: Asiago, Asolo, Fumane

2020

Italy tour: postponed

2023

Italy tour: Verona, Cremona, Asola, Padova

MEET THE STAFF

19.jpg

ERIC W. PHILLIPS MBE
(Music Director)

Born in Neath, Eric graduated from University College Cardiff with a BMUS (Hons) degree and went on to complete his M.A before taking up his first teaching appointment at Whitchurch High School in 1980. He studied piano with Richard McMahon and Martin Jones at University, where he won the ‘Eric Harrison Memorial Prize for Pianists’.

 

His work with Whitchurch High School Orchestra has involved him conducting in the Royal Albert Hall and the Royal Festival Hall, London, St. David’s Hall, Cardiff and on concert tours abroad.

 

Eric joined the staff of the Youth Orchestra in 1980. Five years later, he became Associate Conductor and was appointed Principal Conductor of the Orchestra in 1993. Under his direction, the Orchestra has given outstanding performances of some of the most demanding works in the orchestral repertoire - Mahler’s 2nd, 3rd, 5th and 6th Symphonies, Rachmaninov’s Symphony No 2, Richard Strauss’ Alpine Symphony and Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra. Eric was awarded an MBE in the 2013 Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

JULIE THORNE 
(Orchestral Manager)

Julie joined the Orchestra in 1995, shortly after completing a Music Degree (BMUS) at Cardiff University and taking up her post as classroom teacher in the Music Department at Whitchurch High School. She was also a member of the BBC National Chorus of Wales from 1994 to 2004.

 

Since retiring from teaching in 2014, Julie has played an important role in supporting her husband’s pharmacy businesses, as well as being a mum to her two children. Julie keeps the weekly orchestra administration running smoothly, as well as organising courses, concerts and foreign tours.
 

Julie is a keen skier and enjoys regular holidays in the winter months with Alison and families in various European resorts. 

IMG_5461Copy copy.JPG
IMG_0011.heic

ALISON HOWELLS
(Library & Orchestral Assistant)

Alison was born in Edinburgh, moving to Wales to study viola with  Stephen Broadbent at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama where she achieved a BA Performing Arts (Music) and an Advanced Certificate in Performing. At the RWCMD Alison was principal viola in both the Symphony and Chamber Orchestras and played percussion in the Wind Band.

Since leaving college Alison has worked as a peripatetic teacher for the Cardiff County and Vale of Glamorgan Music Service, teaching violin and viola from beginner to post grade 8 standard. Alison tutors with the county Foundation and Youth Orchestras. When time allows Alison also works as a freelance viola player in orchestras and shows.

 

In her spare time Alison enjoys skiing holidays with Julie, cycling and watching rugby.

REBECCA SWEET
(Strings)

Born in Cardiff, Rebecca started learning the violin with Sylvia Jones, Jeff Lloyd and Phil Roberts. She then went on to study her BMUS (Hons) with Darragh Morgan at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and her PGdip with Clare Thompson at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. 

Rebecca grew up playing in Cardiff County & Vale of Glamorgan ensembles and spent 6 years playing with National Youth Orchestra of Wales, becoming co-leader in her final 2 years with the orchestra. Since leaving college Rebecca enjoys a freelance career teaching violin and piano and plays regularly with orchestras such as British Sinfonietta, Cardiff Sinfonietta and Welsh Sinfonia. In 2015 Rebecca made her TV debut playing on the X Factor final at Wembley arena!

image0.jpeg

Get in touch with us from via our social media channels or our direct contact form.

LOOKING TO FIND OUT MORE INFORMATION?

bottom of page