Rokstra Youth Orchestra

Students accepted into RYO participate in the full orchestra and a “by invitation” rock ensemble.

Students receive insightful, expert coaching from RYO’s faculty, enabling them to reach for a truly professional level of performance and rock their potential.

playing it big and small

The RYO experience includes beginner, intermediate, and advanced orchestra performance opportunities.

By providing this comprehensive approach, RYO helps every student improve their individual skills and musicality while gaining an understanding of performing as part of ensembles of different levels.


RYO follows the school calendar, and rehearses Saturdays at Graner Music in Colorado Springs.

A typical Saturday rehearsal schedule is split between our three (3) orchestras and looks like this:

10:00 – 11:50 – Rock and Roll Youth Orchestra (adv)
12:00 – 1:20 – Modern String Project (int)
1:30-2:20 – Eclectric Light Orchestra (beg)


Rokstra consists of students ages 11-18 and is dedicated to performing well-known popular music on the orchestral stage.

Once per year RYO pairs a pop or rock artist with the orchestra in performance.

Past collaborations (through the Xibus program) have included the Turtle Island Quartet, singers from GLEE!, Riverdance, and Celtic Woman.


In addition to participating in our full orchestra, students from RYO may be selected to join a rock ensemble, which include string quartets and trios.

The ensemble music experience provides all students with a deeper, more involved understanding of music and their instruments.

Each year RYO hosts world renowned chamber musicians and sought-after performers, composers and clinicians.

Past featured guests have included members of the Boston String Quartet, Todd Sullivan, and recording artists from EMI Records.


Regular sectionals are a key component to a successful performance.

Hours of detailed instruction are provided by world class musicians. Our faculty have performed with Herbie Hancock, Paul Simon, Jennifer Holiday, and for President George H.W. Bush, Queen Rainia of Jordan, Queen Noor, and First Lady Laura Bush.

Sectionals occur 2 to 3 times per concert cycle during the Saturday rehearsal block.

~ The Orchestras ~

Rock and Roll Youth Orchestra

RRYO is designed for advanced players comfortable playing at the level of Suzuki Book 4 ( click here for example), and should be comfortable playing in 2nd and 3rd positions. Advanced players are accepted based upon tryouts ( click here to review tryout requirements). Selected repertoire is selected based upon the interest of the group, and is arranged by the Rokstra team for each group of incoming students.

Modern String Project

MSP is designed for intermediate players who are comfortable playing at the level of Suzuki late Book 2/early Book 3 ( click here for samples), and should understand basic 3rd position shifting technique, and vibrato. Selected repertoire is selected based upon the interest of the group, and is arranged by the Rokstra team for each group of incoming students.

Eclectric Light Orchestra

The ELO is a beginner level orchestra, designed for string players who have less than one year of experience, or have just started on their instrument. All players are expected to have their own instrument to bring to class. Content for this class will be at the level of Suzuki or Simply Strings Book 1. Curriculum for our proprietary curriculum, Rokstra 101 is used as a basis for the program.