Playing with others is where the magic starts

We believe playing in a group with others is at the heart of developing young musicians. The benefits are many: making new friends, challenging you to achieve more than you thought possible, and experiencing the emotional power of producing a bigger sound than you can by yourself – these can really take you to another place.

Our groups enable young people to work with others at the same level of experience on specialist skill development and performances.

You can progress up the levels, starting with an After-School Music Club. If your school does not have its own Club you can attend those of any school nearby. Here are the types of bands, orchestras and ensembles you can join:

After-School Music Clubs (play, compose, sing or dance)
School of Rock & Pop (jazz, folk, metal, pop etc, compose, perform, improvise)
INTERMEDIATE (grade 2 to 6)
Cambridge Area Music Centre (sections and whole orchestra)
ADVANCED (first ensembles: grade 7 and above, second ensembles: grade 5 and above)
County orchestras and ensembles (string, woodwind, brass, percussion, harps, big band, early music ensemble, world music, wind orchestra, full orchestra)


The cost varies depending on the type of ensemble and activity it does starting from £35 per term. Please see the specific pages for each ensemble for detailed information.

If costs are a barrier – whether the cost of getting to rehearsals or paying the fee – we can help with funding. Our bursary scheme is confidential and supports individuals whose situation would otherwise prevent them from taking part.

Don't just take our word for it:

What people have said about the various bands and orchestras:

“Massive congratulations for last week’s superb concert”
David Westbrook, parent

“I took my son to the County Youth Orchestra performance today at The Corn Exchange. We were both extremely impressed. Wow, it was amazing! What’s more he asked if he could join”
Natalie Easton, parent

"I never thought orchestra to be the place where I would find my best friend. But I guess I've been proven wrong"

Anna, 'cello, Chesterton Community College

"Orchestra is my favourite music session of the week – great music, great friends, great times"

Aren, alto sax, Ely College


I love playing in the Cambridgeshire County Youth Orchestra. It’s where I have made friends and 
it makes me so happy when we all play it well