Juilliard's performing orchestral ensembles give more than 30 concerts each season at Lincoln Center in the Peter Jay Sharp Theater, Alice Tully Hall, and Avery Fisher Hall, as well as in Carnegie Hall and other venues around New York City. Participation in these ensembles provides a solid foundation for instrumentalists hoping to join professional orchestras. In fact, numerous Juilliard alumni have become first-chair players and section members in orchestras in both the United States and abroad.

Following is a list of Juilliard's various orchestral ensembles.

Juilliard Orchestra

The Juilliard Orchestra is the School's major orchestral ensemble. Consisting of students from all years of study, it gives many performaces throughout the school year, in Alice Tully, Avery Fisher, and Carnegie Halls, and the Peter Jay Sharp Theater.

In addition to performances led by Alan Gilbert, the director of conducting and orchestral studies, Juilliard orchestras are frequently directed by guest conductors such as John Adams, Marin Alsop, Vladimir Ashkenazy, James Conlon, Charles Dutoit, James Gaffigan, Bernard Haitink, James Levine, Yannick Nezet-Seguin, Leonard Slatkin, Michael Tilson Thomas, and many others. Outstanding conductors such as Pierre Boulez, Sir Colin Davis, Sir Roger Norrington, André Previn, the late Sir George Solti, and the late Leonard Bernstein have lead orchestral readings with the students in the past.

Juilliard Chamber Orchestra

The Juilliard Chamber Orchestra (J.C.O.) is a non-conducted chamber orchestra open to students chosen by audition in the fall semester. The J.C.O. is coached in a collaborative rehearsal process modeled after that of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and performs once during the year in concert at Alice Tully Hall. Select rehearsals are coached by members of Orpheus and other guests.

New Juilliard Ensemble

Founded and directed by faculty member Joel Sachs, the New Juilliard Ensemble is the School's chief proponent of recent music. A chamber orchestra consisting of 13 to 30 performers, it offers two concerts each semester that feature works of the last 10 years, along with some rarely performed major compositions of the post-World War II period. Most performances are premieres; an increasing number of works are being written for the ensemble by composers around the world, as well as by selected Juilliard student composers. Participation is voluntary; admission by audition.


One of the newest additions to Juilliard’s roster of performing ensembles, Axiom was founded by students in 2005. This chamber ensemble, under the leadership of its music director, Jeffrey Milarsky, is dedicated to performing 20th- and 21st-century masterworks. Since its debut performance in Avery Fisher Hall under the baton of James Conlon in February 2006, the group has rapidly established itself as a leading figure in New York City’s contemporary music culture with performances throughout Lincoln Center, in addition to frequent appearances at Columbia University’s Miller Theater and Le Poisson Rouge in Greenwich Village. Recent collaborations with artists from Juilliard Dance and Juilliard’s Music Technology Center highlight the variety the ensemble’s groundbreaking activities.

Lab Orchestra

The Lab Orchestra is the "instrument" that student conductors practice on! It meets once a week and covers both standard and not-so-familiar orchestral and operatic repertoire from the Baroque to the present day. Rehearsals take place under the direction of conducting majors supervised by the director of orchestral studies. Assignment on a work-study basis by the director of performance activities. Public performances in Alice Tully Hall on Juilliard's Wednesdays at One series.



Related Links

Calendar of Orchestral Performances

Listen to the Juilliard Orchestra perform Tchaikovsky

Juilliard in the News