Honor Orchestra

Rehearsal Snack Sign-up Link

Each week the Honor Orchestra will take a mid-rehearsal break so that students can refuel with a snack and socialize with their peers. Please click HERE if you would like to volunteer to provide snacks or drinks for one of the Honor Orchestra practices. Many thanks for your generosity. The students appreciate your contribution!


What is Honor String Orchestra?

Honor String Orchestra is made up of the most advanced string students selected from each elementary school in the district. It is a group that will provide students with the opportunity to take the skills they have been practicing on their instruments, both individually and in class, and apply them to an orchestral group setting. This performance-based ensemble will give those who are at the head of their music classes an extra set of challenges and motivation that will lead to continued success at the next developmental levels.

Who can join Honor String Orchestra?

Any student currently participating in 4th or 5th grade strings class at school is welcome and encouraged to audition for Honor Orchestra. An enthusiastic, hard working attitude is essential for any potential Honor Orchestra member. Students who are accepted must be able and willing to practice additional music that is more advanced than the music they are receiving in their weekly music class.

Note: Although the Honor Orchestra is comprised of mixed grade levels, the majority of Honor Orchestra students are in 5th grade. The Honor Orchestra audition and repertoire align with the 5th grade curriculum. As such, the audition level is not appropriate for 4th grade students unless they are receiving instruction outside of school.

When are Honor String Orchestra rehearsals and performances?

For students who are accepted, the Honor Orchestra will meet to rehearse every Tuesday from 3:15–5:00, beginning on December 10, 2019 through April 28, 2020, excluding any Tuesdays when school is not in session. Rehearsals for the Honor Orchestra will take place at Mira Costa High School in room 3 (building G). Performance dates for this season are as follows:

  • Thurs., Feb. 6: All-District Orchestra Festival - 6 PM report time; 8 PM approximate end time.
  • Sat., April 18: Festival at Knott’s Berry Farm - ALL day; exact times to be announced.
  • Tues., April 28: Final Concert & Potluck - 4:00 PM report time; 6:00 PM approximate end time.

When are the Honor String Orchestra auditions and how does my son or daughter sign up?

Honor String Orchestra auditions will take place on Saturday, November 16 at Pacific School. Links to the audition sign-up will be posted on this website from October 20–November 15. See the sign-up links at the top of the page.

What is the audition process?

The Honor String Orchestra audition is made up of the following three components:

1. Scales: Students will play two major scales, at least one octave per scale, in a half note rhythm pattern.

2. Solo Piece: Students will perform one short solo piece that reflects their current ability level. The solo can be from the suggested audition solo sheet (see links below), or a different solo of choice.

3. Sight Reading: Students will play a short excerpt of music that they have never seen before. They will be assessed on their ability to read notes, rhythms, and other musical notation.

Other considerations: Student participation in strings class at school will also be a factor in the selection process. Effort, preparedness, home practice (practice cards), and behavior will all be considered.

How can students prepare for the audition? Why should students consider auditioning?

Honor Orchestra auditions can be a great motivation for students to practice and improve on their instrument. Music time at school is very limited, and not all of the audition components can be thoroughly covered during class. Therefore, the best way a student can prepare for the audition is through individual preparation and practice.

We are committed to ensuring that every student has a positive audition experience regardless of whether they are accepted into the Honor String Orchestra or not. The process for preparing an audition can in itself help students elevate the level of their individual playing. Please encourage your child to audition for the Honor String Orchestra, and help them understand that the experience of auditioning can be valuable, even if they are not accepted into the group.

Honor String Orchestra Suggested Audition Solo Sheets

Click on the link below to download audition music.

Violin Audition Music

Viola Audition Music

Cello Audition Music

String Bass Audition Music