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The Orchestra was founded in 1947, and originally established to accompany performances of operetta such as those written by Gilbert and Sullivan in the local theatres. It soon diversified and, on 6th October 1948, performed it's first public concert as The City of York Light Concert Orchestra.

Until the late 1970's, concerts were sponsored by the City of York Council and held regularly in the Tempest Anderson Hall in Museum Gardens, York. More recently the orchestra has been self funding from the member's subscription and concert revenues. YLO has always been associated with fund raising for various local and national charities and in recent years, has performed many concerts in York and the surrounding areas. These range from small local events, through to large Prom style concerts which have proved increasingly popular in recent years.

The orchestra has grown in size over the past years and currently has around 50 members who, under the direction of our principal conductor Martin Farmery, perform concerts in York and the surrounding areas. A list of our past and present conductors can be found here

2017/8 marked the Orchestra's 75th anniversary and to celebrate this, a special concert was performed on 15th April at the Joseph Rowntree Theatre in York. The event was held in aid of St Leonard's Hospice and included music from throughout the Orchestra's history, ending with the traditional Proms music favourites of Rule Brittania, Edward Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance March and Jerusalem. Playing to a full house, the event raised 2354.78 for the Hospice.
Pictures and information from the event can be found here

Click here for details of some of the charities and local projects that we have recently supported through our concert performances and here to read recent press releases

York Light Orchestra is a member of the Light Music Society

To see details of recent concerts, please click here.