National Youth Orchestra of Wales Cerddorfa Genedlaethol Ieuenctid Cymru


The National Youth Orchestra of Wales was founded in 1945, and is Europe’s longest-standing national youth orchestra. It has an impressive history and has rightly merited attention both within Wales and beyond.

Successive generations of players have benefited from the guidance and tuition of internationally-recognised professional musicians, as well as from the NYOW’s distinguished conductors; Clarence Raybould (1945 – 1966), Arthur Davison (1967 – 1990), Elgar Howarth (1991 – 1995) and Christopher Adey (1996 – 2002). In 2003, Owain Arwel Hughes joined the Orchestra as its Conductor and Music Director – an association that continued with the Orchestra’s 60th Anniversary celebrations in 2006 and through to the present day.

Over the years, the Orchestra has presented concerts in prestigious venues at home and abroad, including St David’s Hall (Cardiff), the Bridgewater Hall (Manchester), the National Concert Hall (Dublin), Waterfront Hall (Belfast), Beethovensaal (Stuttgart), the Salle Erasme (Strasbourg) and the magnificent Konzerthaus am Gendarmenmarkt (Berlin).

During 2006, the Orchestra celebrates its Diamond Jubilee and the achievements of Wales’ many talented young musicians with a series of concerts and events, including debut performances at the Welsh Proms in July and at the Three Choirs Festival, Hereford in August, once again under the artistic direction of Owain Arwel Hughes.

“The National Youth Orchestra of Wales is a wonderful shop window for Welsh talent and an opportunity for people to hear exactly what is being achieved musically in Wales” (Owain Arwel Hughes)