The Canberra Symphony Orchestrahas announced the launch of the Canberra Symphony Youth Chamber Orchestra (CSYCO, pronounced ‘psycho’), to be led by concertmaster Kirsten Williams. Designed as an additional program for music students aged 14-19, Williams is adamant it will build on work done in school and other youth programs rather than replacing it.

Kirsten Williams

“I’m very passionate about imparting this kind of experience to young students,” says Williams. “What we are offering is like a mini music camp once a week… And we all know music camps are fun, you make great friendships, and with like-minded people. So it is very important to us, and to me, that it is a supportive environment for the individual, and they learn that the individual part they are playing is vital to the support of the team.”

Williams has a long history with youth ensembles and mentorship, from studying under Alice Waten at the Sydney Conservatorium alongside Richard Tognetti to working as mentor and tutor of Sydney Youth Orchestras and the Australian Youth Orchestra, and at the Hume Conservatorium in Goulburn.