The Young People's Chamber Orchestra, a string orchestra working without a conductor, is designed to take accomplished young string players and mold them into high-functioning musicians with a complete attentiveness to detail and to each other within the context of the music. The director trains the musicians to interact and collaborate on high-level music-making and nuanced performance. This orchestra is for students up to 23 years of age who are studying privately and have had previous orchestral training. It is modeled after the Bay Area's renowned New Century Chamber Orchestra and is the first youth ensemble of its kind in northern California. All members of the Young People's Chamber Orchestra must be enrolled in another of the Santa Rosa Symphony ensembles or their school's orchestra, and must be committed to a strict routine of rehearsals, private lessons and at-home practice.
Established in 1998, the Young People's Chamber Orchestra was formed under the direction of Linda Ghidossi-DeLuca, who led this ensemble until 2008. Currently under the direction of Aaron Westman, the orchestra has been featured as a guest on a New Century Chamber Orchestra performance and has been a winner of the Berkeley Junior Bach Festival.