NYOS Soundings


In summer 2022 we launched ‘Soundings’, a review of NYOS and its activities. We are now pleased to share the results and would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who generously shared their time and ideas as part of this review. Your feedback has been thought-provoking, encouraging, and challenging!


We engaged Kinharvie to conduct ‘Soundings’. The purpose of the review was to explore how to develop NYOS so it is best placed to nurture Scotland’s next generation of musical talent.


A variety of opportunities were available for those who wished to contribute to the review including facilitated meetings, online surveys, one-to-one conversations, and email submissions.


In total, 238 people took part in Soundings. Our respondents were current and former NYOS members, their parents and carers, partner organisations, musical collaborators, music and instrumental teachers, schools, HEIs, community organisations, and supporters.

What did we find?

Our respondents believe that:

  • NYOS is the ‘flagship’ orchestral music-making organisation for young people in Scotland, enjoying a well-deserved reputation for excellence, and provides unique opportunities for young people in Scotland to develop as musicians
  • NYOS provides a valued sense of belonging and community to many of its members
  • NYOS seems to help young people to become more skilled creators - not only of music but of relationships, joy, meaning, community, and confidence
  • NYOS members gain great satisfaction and joy from co-creating musical experiences for others, and want to share these experiences more widely
  • NYOS should widen access and inclusion
  • NYOS needs to be more ambitious
  • NYOS needs to define and communicate its focus

The strongest theme in the review was that of inclusion and accessibility – how can NYOS extend its rich and valuable offer to a greater diversity and number of young people in Scotland? Respondents believe the answer to this question lies in:

  • greater collaboration with other organisations with shared interests
  • intentionally mobilising the NYOS community
  • developing a more defined strategic focus

What happens next?

The findings have been used to shape a new strategic plan to help Scotland’s next generation of young musicians to flourish. You can discover more about how this is being brought to life through our vision, mission and values by visiting the page below. 

> About NYOS