2018 Chamber Series

The National Youth Orchestra of China will return in 2018 to present the NYO-China Chamber Series, a training residency and concert tour centered around the craft and performance of chamber music. For two weeks in July, between ten to fifteen musicians aged 14 to 21 (or up to 22 for NYO-China alumni) will gather at the central Conservatory of Music in Beijing in China to rehearse a selection of great works in the chamber music repertoire under the direction of a small faculty of teaching artists. Students and mentors will then join each other onstage to present their prepared works through a series of performances across China.

The NYO-China Chamber Series is meant to provide its members with an especially focused and intimate musical experience. During the residency, students will benefit from both extended private instruction and increased rehearsal time spent in dialogue with their peers and teachers. Thereafter, the concert tour will provide numerous and varied opportunities for meaningful engagement with their listeners. In combination, these commitments will emphasize the necessity of open, honest relationships in music making, as well as the power of the connections that result from it.

Like all NYO-China ventures, the entire program - tuition, room, board, and travel within China - will be absolutely free for students so that no exceptional musician is ever turned away for lack of funds.

Training Residency

The training residency for NYO-China's 2018 Chamber Series will take place from July 15 to 28 at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. There, about ten to fifteen exceptional student musicians will have the opportunity to intimately study with the program's teaching artists. Besides daily rehearsals in chamber groups, students will attend regular master classes, seminars on theory and improvisation, and one-on-one music lessons.

Concert Tour

From July 29 to August 4, students will perform alongside their teaching artists in a series of chamber music recitals at premier venues throughout China, beginning with a concert at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. Along the way, they will also perform at the Qingdao International Music Festival and have an opportunity to perform with students from the National Youth Orchestra of the United States in America (NYO-USA).

Teaching Artists
Qing Li, Strings

Bringing great warmth, poise, and insight to her music making, Qing Li is a versatile artist who serves as the Baltimore Symphony’s Principal Second Violin, as well as a frequent soloist. Li is also a Piatigorsky Foundation Artist, much sought-after recitalist, chamber musician, and guest concertmaster. Notable reviews for Qing Li include The German Hohenlohe News (“excelled with ethereal play”) and the Richmond Times (“her style was impeccable”). Li is currently also a violin faculty member of the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University. She gives master classes throughout the American, Asian, and South American major conservatories and international festivals. Born in Beijing, China, Li began violin studies at age four with her father. At age 12, Qing Li was accepted to the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. Based on a prize-winning Sibelius Violin Concerto performance at the first Beijing International Violin Competition, Berl Senofsky brought her to the Peabody Conservatory where she was granted a full scholarship. She currently performs on her Neopolitain instrument made by Nicolo Gagliano in 1736.

Yong Ma, Woodwinds

Yong Ma is Principal Flute at the China National Opera and has been hailed by the New York Concert Review as a player of “astonishing brilliance” since his debut at Carnegie Hall. Mr. Ma began studying flute at the age of eight in China and later became a student of Yongxin Wang at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, and at thirteen, he was a finalist in the “Prague Spring” International Music Competition. In 1996, Mr. Ma came to the United States and later earned both his Bachelor and Master degrees from the Juilliard School in New York, where he studied with Carol Wincenc and Robert Langevin. Mr. Ma is very active as a soloist, orchestral player, chamber music player and teacher. Before his current role at the China National Opera, he served as Principal Flute in the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra and the Louisville Orchestra. He has performed with the New York Philharmonic, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic and Juilliard Orchestra. From 2013 he was the flute professor in Shanxi North University of China, China Orchestra Academy at the Central Conservatory of Music and the Art Institute of Jilin.

Guang Chen, Brass

Guang Chen is a professor at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, the Chief Executive Director of China’s Orchestra Academy, and the Visiting Principal Trumpeter with the China National Symphony Orchestra. He is a former student of Professor Ji Rui-kai and in 1999 he was sponsored by the Zubin Mehta Scholarship to study at the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna. From then on, Guang Chen performed with the Vienna State Opera, the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, and the Vienna Strauss Orchestra. Since graduating from Vienna in 2005, Guang Chen has performed as the visiting Principal Trumpeter for multiple world famous orchestras including the China Philharmonic Orchestra, the National Ballet of China, and many other municipal orchestras. From July 2008 to July 2012, Guang Chen performed in concerts across Asia as the Principal Trumpeter for the Asia Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2011, he was invited by the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra to perform as Principal Trumpeter, and he has performed and recorded in the same position for the Singapore Symphony Orchestra.


Auditions will be virtual, with candidates submitting their application materials online. All Chinese citizens (including those living in Hong Kong and Macau) who will be between the ages of 14 and 21 during the course of the program will eligible to apply; existing alumni from NYO-China’s 2017 season are also eligible, regardless of age. Because the focus of this year's program will be chamber music, we are only accepting applications for the following instruments: violin, viola, cello, flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, horn, trumpet, trombone, and tuba.

Applications should be emailed to auditions@nyochina.org and should include 1) a completed application form, 2) a video of the student performing a 2 - 4 minute portion of a solo piece and 3) videos of the student performing the requested excerpts; if a video is too large to send over email, please include a link to where it can be streamed or downloaded. Additional application materials such as résumés are welcome but by no means necessary.

Applications must be submitted by Sunday, June 10, 11:59 PM CST, though admissions are conducted on a rolling basis and students are encouraged to apply early. Applications will be reviewed by this season’s Teaching Artists, and all decisions are expected to be released before the end of June.


Applicants are required to submit videos of all requested excerpts (see downloadable links below). For each individual excerpt, the video should be uncut, unedited, and showing your face.