Greetings and welcome,
We would like to take a moment and let you know about the Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestras. The TSYO traditionally draws the most talented young musicians from northwest Ohio and southern Michigan. The opportunity to perform with a group of musicians with similar dedication to musicianship and quality of performance would be a wonderful supplemental experience for them. Active recruiting for next season will begin soon, and we anticipate our structure will continue to allow us to build on the quality that has been established.
The Toledo Symphony continues to provide artistic and educational leadership for the TSYO. We are excited about this continued partnership and hope to be able to work with you in an effort to provide another musical and educational outlet for your students, in addition to the instruction you provide. We would like to ask for your continued help in encouraging students to build on the positive experiences they receive in your own program through membership in the Toledo Youth Orchestras.
For the 2019-2020 season we will be continuing to maintain three orchestral ensembles: The Philharmonic, Symphonic as full orchestras, and the Concert ensemble as a string orchestra. Through these three ensembles, we are able to continue accommodating the growing numbers of musicians interested in performing with the TSYO. The program represents a proven value for young musicians in the greater Toledo area, and members receive numerous benefits.
Student musicians in the youth orchestras will continue to be actively involved with performers from the Toledo Symphony Orchestra. The student musicians will also continue to have the benefits of free tickets to many of the Toledo Symphony performances (with advance purchase privileges for families) and side-by-side performance opportunities. Most importantly the orchestra will continue to perform the highest quality literature from the orchestral repertoire.
We hope that you will consider encouraging more students to audition for the TSYO program. We feel it would be a valuable experience and they would enjoy working in an ensemble comprised of dedicated and talented students.
With warmest wishes,
As part of the core educational mission of the Toledo Symphony, the Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestras bring together over 200 of the most talented students from Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan in an atmosphere of musical excellence. Dedicated staff members and musicians work hard to give a top quality musical education to all students regardless of financial circumstance. The Toledo Youth Orchestras have been in existence for over 70 years, starting out as a small group of friends meeting for fun, the organization grew into what we know today.
Artistic Director / Philharmonic Conductor
Mr. Wasim Hawary, a lifelong resident of the Toledo area, received his undergraduate and graduate degrees in music from Bowling Green State University. While at BGSU, Wasim held the position of Principal Bassist in the Philharmonia. Wasim has been teaching music in the public school system since 1998 and is currently the orchestra director at Maumee High School. He served as the Assistant Director of the TSYO from 1999-2005 and has also taught both guitar and piano at Owens Community College. Wasim returned to the TSYO in 2009 as the director of the Toledo String Sinfonietta and, just one year after his return, had the pleasure of watching the group size double and expand into the Toledo Youth Symphonic Orchestra. It is with great pleasure that Wasim has assumed the role of Artistic Director of the, now three, Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestras and conductor of the Philharmonic Orchestra.
Wasim actively performs in the region with various ensembles on his main instrument, the bass. When not on stage or in classroom, Wasim also spends a great deal of time in various recording studios writing, performing, and producing all genres of music. His music has been used in Feature Films and on the USA network. Wasim lives in Perrysburg with his wife Kristin and his three children Norah, Juni, and Gordon.
Symphonic Orchestra Conductor
Matthew Forte is Director of Orchestral Studies and Assistant Professor of Music History at the University of Toledo, where he serves as chair of strings, conducts the UT Symphony Orchestra, and teaches courses in conducting and music history. Prior to his current appointment, Matthew was a Rasmussen Fellow at Michigan State University, where he studied with Kevin Noe and served as music director of the MSU Concert Orchestra, service for which he was awarded the 2017 MSU Distinguished Teaching Prize. During his tenure, the Concert Orchestra was revitalized: orchestra membership nearly doubled, audience attendance tripled, and the group quickly became an indispensable part of the cultural fabric of the university as a whole.
An enthusiastic supporter of young musicians, Matthew also serves as a conductor for the Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestras and for the Greater Toledo International Youth Orchestra and is in frequent demand nationally as a clinician and educator to students of all levels. In addition to his work as an educator, Dr. Forte acts as cover conductor for the St. Louis Symphony and is engaged frequently by the Aspen Music Festival and School.
Concert Strings Conductor
Betsy Cranston is in her twelfth year as a teacher in Perrysburg Schools, where she began her career. Betsy is an orchestra director for students in grades 5-8. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she also serves as the Perrysburg Junior High Music Department Head and chair of the OMEA District 1 Junior High Honors Orchestra. She earned her undergraduate degree in music education from The Ohio State University and received her graduate degree in Curriculum and Instruction from The University of Toledo. A cellist, Betsy is a founding member of The Asteria String Quartet and performs regularly around Toledo and the surrounding area. Ms. Cranston is excited to return to the Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestras in the role of Concert Strings conductor. She resides in Toledo with her daughters Layla and Lydia.
Concert Strings Conductor
Kathleen Schnerer is in her fifth year as an Orchestra teacher at Perrysburg Schools, where she began her career. Kathleen is currently teaching 7-8th grade orchestra at Perrysburg Junior High School. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she teaches private Suzuki lessons and group classes at the Toledo Symphony School of Music. A violinist since age three, Kathleen has studied with Vasile Beluska and Merwin Siu and performs regularly in the Northwest Ohio region. Actively involved as a member of the Ohio Music Education Association (OMEA) and American String Teachers Association (ASTA), Kathleen currently serves as a chair of the OMEA District 1 Junior High Honors Orchestra, an ASTA mentor to new orchestra teachers, OMEA NW Region Secretary/Treasurer, and member of the ASTA K-12 Orchestra Committee. Kathleen graduated with honors from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education, specializing in Instrumental String and General Classroom Music Education and was a recipient of the Dr. Paul Makara Violin Scholarship. Kathleen is currently completing coursework for a Master’s degree in Music Education from the University of Michigan. Ms. Schnerer is looking forward to her second year with the Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestra Concert Strings in the role of Concert Strings conductor.
Youth Orchestras Coordinator
Joan Weiler has been associate principal/second bassoonist of the Toledo Symphony since 1989. She grew up in Columbus, Ohio and has performed with the Columbus Symphony and the Columbus Opera Orchestra.
Ms. Weiler received her master’s degree in performance from Temple University where she studied bassoon with Bernard Garfield, principal bassoonist of the Philadelphia Orchestra. She received her bachelor’s degree summa cum laude from Ohio State University where she also has completed coursework for a doctorate and was the winner of the DMA Concerto Competition.
In 1987, Ms. Weiler performed under the direction of Leonard Bernstein for the inaugural season of the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival in Germany. She was a finalist in the Fernand Gillet Double Reed Young Artist Competition in Graz, Austria and toured Japan for three weeks with the Ohio State University Concert Band. She has taught on the faculties of the University of Toledo, Ohio Northern University, Heidelberg College, Ohio Wesleyan University and Wright State University.
TSYO tuition is $265 for each member of the orchestra. Families with more than one member in the orchestra will pay only $235 for the 2nd member and $215 for any additional members. Tuition is due by the first rehearsal. You may choose to pay the full amount or pay in two installments; second payment is due by January 13, 2020. Financial assistance is available (see form below). Assistance requests need to be received prior to the first rehearsal each school year. All inquiries about tuition assistance or tuition related issues are held in strict confidence. Please contact Joan Weiler, TSYO Coordinator, at 419-418-0037 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you have additional questions.
For financial assistance, click here.
The Toledo Symphony Youth Ensemble is a high school chamber ensemble made of Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestra members. It was founded in Toledo, Ohio in the summer of 2017 by a group of friends as TSYQ (Toledo Symphony Youth Quartet). TSYE is run by students under the mentorship of the Toledo Symphony and parent volunteers. The students make decisions on members, repertoire, coaches, and venues.
TSYE is committed to reaching out to the youths and adults in the Toledo area in non-traditional ways. The members aim to explore and excel in various types of music and communicate with diverse audiences. In addition to committing to a high level of musicianship, the students are committed to being ambassadors for the TSO. Find them performing and volunteering in the parks, at the malls, and other unexpected places as well as in the concert halls!
TSYE regularly performs and volunteers at various venues in the Toledo area such as nursing homes and TSO pre-concert events. If you would like to learn more about volunteering, please email Loa Cho, cellist, at email@example.com.
Click here for an up-to-date list of events and more information about TSYE.