Founded in 2002, the Western Connecticut Youth Orchestra organization provides talented young musicians in the regional Connecticut and New York areas with exceptional learning and performance opportunities, while fostering an awareness and appreciation of the enjoyment and power of music.
Twenty-five young musicians were selected for the inaugural youth orchestra, (Ridgefield Symphony Youth Orchestra) in January 2003. In the fall of 2005, the program grew to include a String Ensemble, and in August 2008, as part of its goal to establish greater recognition of the organization’s regional focus, the name was changed to the Western Connecticut Youth Orchestra. In 2010, the WCYO added a Wind Ensemble. Together the Symphony Orchestra, String Ensemble and Wind Ensemble consist of nearly one hundred musicians ages 10-18.
Starting Fall 2019, the WCYO added the Charles Ives Music Festival (CIMF) to the organization's educational and performance programming. CIMF furthers the mission and honors the legacy of Charles Ives by bringing American music to the Fairfield County area with both educational and performance programs. CIMF provides interactive educational events, centered around the exploration of chamber music, for both children and adults in the community. CIMF concerts feature dynamic and unique artists performing the music of Ives, other 20th and 21st century American composers, and works that transcends the traditional boundaries of classical music to incorporate other styles and genres. CIMF is led by artistic director and composer, Paul Frucht, and associate artistic director, Jon Cziner.
Western Connecticut Youth Orchestra
PO Box 964
Ridgefield, CT 06877