Photo by David DeNee

The Orchestra Now is a unique orchestra and master’s degree program designed to prepare musicians for the challenges facing the modern symphony orchestra.

Musicians receive three years of advanced orchestral training and take graduate-level courses in orchestral and curatorial studies, leading to a Master of Music degree. Beginning in 2019, The Orchestra Now will also offer a two-year certificate program. Developed by the conductor Leon Botstein in partnership with professional musicians, teachers, and professional orchestra administrators, The Orchestra Now offers students the kind of experience they might expect as career orchestral musicians—public performance, touring, recording—and something more. In The Orchestra Now, you will be part of an ensemble of forward-thinking, exceptional musicians who intend to redefine what it means to be an orchestra. You will learn from renowned faculty how to curate repertoire that absorbs the audience and sparks new ideas. Under the guidance of experienced artist teachers, you and your peers will design and present music programs that respond to diverse audiences.

TŌN members receive a fellowship covering tuition, a bi-weekly taxable living stipend (see below), and health benefits.

The Orchestra performs regular subscription series at Carnegie Hall, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College, and Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Frederick P. Rose Hall.

In addition, the orchestra performs other concerts in New York City and throughout the Northeast, including Massachusetts and upstate New York. In total, The Orchestra Now performs 20–30 concerts each season. The Orchestra Now also performs regularly in chamber groups in the Hudson Valley area.

Candidates for audition must submit a resume and prescreening tape (excerpts available upon request), and also complete a full application. The program is open to anyone with a conservatory degree or equivalent, and to those who may already have masters or doctoral degrees.

For more information about TŌN, please visit

Inquiries and list of excerpts: