School of Music > Community Music > Programs > Pre-College > OCMP @ CMD

Youth Orchestra | Chamber Music Program


ocmp at CMD

DePaul Community Music Division (CMD) proudly presents its newest offering, the Youth Orchestra | Chamber Music Program (OCMP@CMD), designed to cultivate the talents of young musicians studying violin, viola, cello, bass, piano (chamber groups only).

Guided by a unified team of outstanding coaches, including Mina Zikri, conductor of the Oistrakh Symphony of Chicago and the Northbrook Symphony, and members of the esteemed KAIA String Quartet, OMCP@CMD welcomes string students seven years or older playing at Suzuki Book 2 or above, and piano students playing Haydn/Mozart/Beethoven Sonatas or above.

For string students, this program affords participants the unique opportunity to engage in both chamber groups and youth orchestra, creating a comprehensive musical experience that fosters growth, collaboration, and musical unity. As part of the chamber experience, piano and string students learn to blend their sound seamlessly and develop an increased awareness of the subtle nuances required for cohesive ensemble playing. Chamber ensembles are organized by interest, age, and ability. 

​The OCMP curriculum also develops communication skills, fosters rhythmic integrity, accelerates note-reading, and enhances accountability for one's own part. Overall, OCMP@CMD cultivates a vibrant community and creates lasting musical bonds among its participants. Through shared experiences and performances, students develop a strong sense of camaraderie and mutual support. We hope you will consider signing up today. Learn more below!​

Please thoroughly read the following information regarding OCMP@CMD Auditions. Includes returning students. 

Audition Requirements for Strings and Piano

Mozart Ensemble (Suzuki Book 2 and up):

Beethoven Ensemble (Suzuki Book 4 and up):

  • Three to four octave scale and arpeggio of choice. 
  • One solo repertoire piece or part of a large work up to 3 minutes (memorization not required).
  • Prepared excerpts, located below. Both pieces need to be prepared in full. Memorization not required.




  • Four-octave scale and arpeggio of choice
  • Two contrasting repertoire selections (memorization not required)


    OCMP audition poster







ocmp chamber group



  • Youth Orchestra conductor: Mina Zikri
  • Chamber Group coaches: KAIA String Quartet (Victoria Moreira, violin; Naomi Culp, violin; Susan Bengtson-Price, viola; Hope DeCelle, cello)


  • Eight hour-long weekly orchestra rehearsals (strings only) on Sunday afternoons
  • Eight hour-long weekly coaching sessions per quarter (3 quarters per year) on Sunday afternoons 
  •  afternoons (weekday options also available) 
  • One masterclass per quarter
  • Three end-of-quarter performances during the year 

Youth String Orchestras

Mozart Ensemble

  • For beginning students with at least two years of study, this small group is an ideal first ensemble experience. Rehearsals concentrate on basic ensemble playing, orchestral conduct, and the development of strong reading and listening skills.


Beethoven Ensemble

  • For intermediate advanced players, the Beethoven Ensemble performs quality string literature from a variety of eras and styles. Emphasis is placed on refining ensemble techniques and developing a student's musicality through orchestral performance. 



  • General Fee: $300
  • CMD Lesson Student: $275

Piano Students - Chamber Groups only 

  • General Fee: $200
  • CMD Lesson Student: $175
  • Develop blended sound between players
  • Maintain rhythmic integrity
  • Coordinate bowing techniques
  • Accelerate note-reading
  • Enhance accountability for one's own part
  • Expand sense of community & musical bonds with others 

Youth Orchestra


Chamber Groups
10/22-10/29 Mixed

Master class 11/5
Mozart: 12:30-2:00
Beethoven: 2:00-3:30