West Kent Youth Orchestra

Music Centre

West Kent Music Centre

Group Session

Fridays ~ 4:25 pm - 6:05 pm ~ Term Time Only

Music Leader

Benedict Collins Rice







The West Kent Youth Orchestra (WKYO) is an advanced classical orchestra for grades 5+. Led by engaging and inspiring music leader Benedict Collins-Rice, the orchestra explores traditional orchestral repertoire including popular film scores and seasonal favourites.

The orchestra is the perfect place for talented musicians who are keen to have the full orchestral experience and progress their skills in a supportive and fun environment. You will have the opportunity to perform three times a year for friends and family.

Members come from schools across West Kent every week, forging new musical connections and making friends in our diverse and friendly group.

WKYO is currently accepting applications from young musicians on all orchestral instruments, but we are particularly keen to hear from those who play the following: Viola, Trumpet, Bassoon, Trombone, Tuba, Oboe

Term dates 2022/23

Autumn term

September 16, 23, 30; October 7, 14, 21; November 4, 11, 18, 25: December 2

Spring term

January 13, 20, 27; February 3, 10, 24; March 3, 10, 17, 24, 31

Summer term

April 21, 28; May 5, 12, 19, 26; June 9, 16, 23, 30; July 7

How do I join?

You can join this group at any time; there are no auditions, although you must be playing at a grade 5 level or above. If you’d like more information or to apply to join this group, please use the buttons below. Please be aware that at this time due to space and instrument restrictions, we may not be able to accept all applications for new members straight away – if we have already reached our maximum number of participants, you will be placed on a waiting list and notified as such. We hope to be able to remove this restriction soon.

To apply for this ensemble, please click ‘Apply Now’ below. You’ll be taken to the ensemble page on our online course platform where you can add this course to your basket. Once you’ve selected your chosen course,  go to your basket to complete your application. You will then be prompted to log into your Kent Music online customer account.

If you don’t have an online customer account, then don’t worry – you can still easily apply at the ‘Apply Here’ button. You’ll be taken through some simple steps to create an account and your application will be processed the same as someone with an existing account.

After your application is complete, you’ll be sent further information about your ensemble to confirm.

Membership fee

You can join our network of Local Music Groups and Music Centres by paying a membership fee each term. This gives you access to all ensembles and groups at our centres across Kent and Medway.

Aged 18 and under: £45 per term (3 terms in a year)

We are able to offer a 75% discount for those meeting specific financial criteria: visit our Financial Assistance page for details.

WKYO’s Musical Leader

We are thrilled to have the talented Benedict Collins-Rice as the musical leader for WKYO. Known for his ‘passionate, insightful, and inspiring conducting’, Benedict has performed throughout Europe and America (from The Royal Albert Hall to Carnegie Hall); recorded for several record labels, for BBC and NBC Television, the BFI, and broadcast live on Radio 3.

Find Benedict’s full biography here.


Two pieces from the online sessions, Mambo from West Side Story and Mozart’s Sleigh Ride were developed into virtual recording projects for Kent Music’s Midwinter Music Festival, released in December 2020. You can listen below!