Christchurch School of Music


There is nothing quite like the experience of playing in an orchestra and at CSM we believe this is an important part of the learning process. An orchestra not only gives students the ability to be part of a “big” sound from very early stages of their musical development, but also helps students to develop a sense of rhythm, pitch and sight reading skills. It’s also great fun! All of our orchestras will play a mix of traditional orchestral repertoire along with a selection of more contemporary tunes that will appeal to younger students such as Harry Potter, Star Wars, etc.

  • PLAY! In the Junior Symphony Orchestra

    Saturday 8:45 – 9:55    Catholic Cathedral College Hall

    Conductor: Anne Robinson

    Assistant Conductor: Mandy Fleener

    Students choosing to learn an orchestral instrument should consider joining the Junior Symphony Orchestra (JSO) after they have been learning for about a year. Students need to have some confidence in reading music in order to enjoy the experience, but your teacher will be able to help you to decide the appropriate time to join. JSO is a fantastic introduction to orchestral playing where students will learn the concept of a beat and learn the importance of watching the conductor. Students of all ages are welcome to join this wonderful orchestra.

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  • PLAY! In the Intermediate Symphony Orchestra

    Saturday 10:00 – 11:25  Catholic Cathedral College Hall

    Conductor: Beth Cohen

    The Intermediate Symphony Orchestra is generally appropriate for students who have been learning an instrument for 3-5 years. As many of our students in this orchestra are still quite young, the focus at this level is mostly on making the orchestral playing experience enjoyable, but students will also begin to learn more about advance musical concepts and interpretation (dynamics, phrasing, accents). A greater scope of repertoire including arrangements of well known classical pieces.

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  • PLAY! In Sinfonia

    Saturday 11:30 – 1:00 Catholic Cathedral College Hall

    Conductors: Neville Forsythe, Tony Ryan

    Sinfonia is the training ground for our flagship Christchurch Youth Orchestra. Students need to be of at least a grade 5 standard in order to enjoy this orchestra where they will begin to play standard orchestral repertoire rather than simplified versions. Although still focused on fun, Sinfonia has a slightly more serious focus and students will begin to learn about the expectations placed on orchestral players.

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  • PLAY! In the UC Christchurch Youth Orchestra

    The UC Christchurch Youth Orchestra has its own website – for more information check it out:

  • PLAY! In Stringendo (Adults)

    Thursday 6.00 – 7.00 Catholic Cathedral College Music Room (D1)

    Conductor: Beth Cohen

    A string orchestra formed especially for mature string learners! This group focuses on learning through playing. Adult string players are welcome to join the group as soon as they’re comfortable reading easy music which is usually after 1-3 months of lessons. The group rehearses weekly and players will learn technical and orchestral aspects of playing in groups as well as playing ensemble music aimed at beginners. The group is very social and is perfect for adults wanting to have some fun with their music!

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  • PLAY! In Camerata Strings

    Conductor: Patrick Shepherd

    Camerata Strings is a string orchestra made up of violins, violas, cellos and double bass for professional and advanced adult string players who enjoy playing the sublime string repertoire. Camerata is a performance based group that rehearses in the weeks leading up to a performance. Players can choose how many concerts they wish to participate in throughout the year. Rehearsals are held at Catholic Cathedral College in the music room and concerts at St. Augustine’s Church.

    The rehearsal and concert schedule for 2019 is as follows:

    Camerata 1   (Concert on Sunday 10th March, 3.00pm – 4.00pm at St Augustines Church)

    Rehearsal on:

    Sunday 17 Feb 2.00 – 5.00pm
    Sunday 24 Feb 2.00 – 5.00pm
    Thursday 28 Feb 7.00 – 9.00pm
    Sunday 3 March Feb 2.00 – 5.00pm
    Thursday 7 March 7.00 – 9.00pm


    Camerata II  (Concert on Sunday 16th June 3.00pm – 4.00pm at the ChCh Art Gallery)

    Rehearsals on:

    Sunday 26 May 2.00 – 5.00pm
    Thursday 30 May 7.00 – 9.00pm
    Thursday 6 June 7.00 – 9.00pm
    Sunday 9 June 2.00 – 5.00pm
    Thursday 13 June 7.00 – 9.00pm

    Camerata III (TBA)


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