Audition Materials for 2018-2019

Audition materials for the Alpharetta High School Orchestras are now available.  Please download the correct packet for your instrument at the bottom of this page after reading the information below. Auditions are recorded on your own, then you upload your video to the cloud, and complete a Google form with your information. The audition packets have very specific directions.

Students should audition for the particular ensemble they would like to be placed.  If you would like to look up the etudes, here they are:

  • Philharmonia (Level 2)
    • Violin: Wohlfahrt Foundation Studies, Book II, #25
    • Viola: Kayser, 36 Elementary and Progressive Studies, Op. 20 #1
    • Cello: Schroeder 170 Foundation Studies, Vol. 1 #27
    • Double Bass: Simandel, 30 Studies #2
  • Sinfonia (Level 3)
    • Violin: Wohlfahrt Foundation Studies, Book II, #30
    • Viola: Kayser, 36 Elementary and Progressive Studies, Op. 20 #7
    • Cello: Schroeder 170 Foundation Studies, Vol. 1 #31
    • Double Bass:  Simandel, 30 Studies #8
  • Symphony (Level 4)
    • Violin: Mazas Etudes Speciales, #10
    • Viola: Mazas Etudes Speciales, #10
    • Cello: Schroeder 170 Foundation Studies, Vol. 1 #61
    • Double Bass: Simandel, 30 Studies #25


* Each orchestra has different audition requirements and the materials for each orchestra is in each instrument-specific audition packet.

* If you are interested in the NEW AHS Chamber Orchestra (Level 5), you should prepare the Symphony audition then indicate your interest in being considered for Chamber on the submission form.

* If you audition for an ensemble and aren’t accepted, you may be placed in the a class level below.

* If you wish to be a member of the AHS Concert Orchestra (Level 1), no audition is required.

Audition Packets


Please contact Dr. Laux if you have questions or concerns.

Orchestra Lunch Announcement

Dear Orchestra Students,

I regret to inform you that, effective immediately, students will no longer be allowed to eat lunch in the orchestra room.  Additionally, the fine arts hall way, practice rooms, chorus room, band room, and any other area will all off limits during lunch periods. Students who break the rules by loitering in any area will be issued discipline referrals.

The circumstances of this decision are out of my control and I am very sorry to be the bearer of this news. I understand how much the lunchtime collegiality means to many of you and that “tradition” of orchestra lunch is something that you value. I will talk to you regarding this in person while in class, but wanted to let you know now so that you could plan accordingly.  Again, I am sorry to have to tell you this, but I hope you will be understanding.


Dr. Laux

LGPE Information 2018

LGPE is almost here!  This is our biggest performance of the year and we will be performing at Roswell High School. Concert Orchestra and Philharmonia will perform on Wednesday, February 14.  (Note: You are all my Valentines!!) Sinfonia and Symphony will perform on Thursday, February 15.

In class you will received an itinerary and permission form.  If you have lost them, please see the links below.

The permission form is due on Wednesday, February 7.

Wednesday, February 14 – Concert and Philharmonia *REV 2/5/18 *

Itinerary Warm-Up Perform Sightreading
North Springs Symphonic Orchestra 1:45 PM
AHS Concert Orchestra 1:45 PM 2:15 PM 2:45 PM
Johns Creek Sinfonia Orchestra 2:45 PM
Riverwood Intermediate Orchestra 3:15 PM
AHS Philharmonia 3:15 PM 3:45 PM 4:15 PM


Thursday, February 15 – Sinfonia and Symphony *REV 2/5/18 *

Itinerary Warm-Up Perform Sightreading
AHS Sinfonia Orchestra 1:30 PM 2:15 PM 3:00 PM
Milton Sinfonia Orchestra 3:00 PM
Northview Chamber Orchestra 3:30 PM
AHS Symphony Orchestra 3:30 PM 4:15 PM 5:00 PM


All-State Orchestra results 2018

Congratulations to the following students who were accepted into the GMEA All-State Orchestras!

Instrument First Name Last Name Orchestra Violin Section Chair
11/12 Bass Daniel Barket Full Orchestra 4
11/12 Cello Andrew Mulia Full Orchestra 13
11/12 Cello Adam Wang String Orchestra 8
11/12 Viola Alan Ko String Orchestra 4
11/12 Violin Derek Wang String Orchestra  second
11/12 Violin Michelle Cho Full Orchestra first 12
11/12 Violin Richard Cho String Orchestra first 3
9/10 Bass Joy Best String Orchestra 8
9/10 Viola Kaci Xie String Orchestra 3
9/10 Violin Anna Zhu (Alternate)
9/10 Violin Jenny Heo Full Orchestra second 2
9/10 Violin Eileen Liu Full Orchestra second 6
9/10 Violin Sarang Pujari Full Orchestra second 14
9/10 Violin Erin Cho String Orchestra first 4
9/10 Violin Vivia Lung String Orchestra second 5
Harp Olivia Barker Full Orchestra- 11/12  1
Harp Zachary Plimpton  (Alternate)

The All-State event will take place on March 1-3, 2018 in Athens.

I am very proud of everyone who made the effort to audition!

Orchestra Newsletter, 12-06-2017

Winter Concert

Our Winter Concert will be this coming Tuesday, December 12 at 6:30 PM.

The orchestras have been working very hard to prepare for this performance and I think you will be impressed! We will be joined by the 8th grade orchestra students from Webb Bridge and Hopewell Middle Schools and are excited to meet them and hear their performance. (Please note the start time of 6:30 PM to better accommodate the middle school students.)

As we started the new tradition last year, we will be concluding the performance with a grand finale of Leroy Anderson’s Christmas Festival. We expect there will be nearly 300 performers so it’s not to be missed!

Students must remain for the entire concert as every student will be performing in the finale.

Students should make preparations this weekend by practicing extra carefully, and having the following ready:

  • instrument
  • bow
  • accessories (shoulder rest/rock stop)
  • music folder
  • concert uniform – (Let me remind gentlemen that you must wear long black socks, not white socks or black ankle socks.)

Our fist ever AHSO Program Book will be distributed at the concert. We hope you will enjoy it!

Also, don’t forget to bring money to purchase a treat or flowers from our amazing Concert Cafe during intermission or after the concert.

Concert Dinner RSVP

Students need to RSVP for our pizza/salad dinner that begins at 5:00 PM. (Completing the form IS FOR A GRADE!) and is due Thursday at noon.

AHSOA Needs Concert-Day Volunteers

We need help serving pizza to our musicians before the performance (Orchestra, Band, as well as the 8th graders). We also need donations of sweet treats and drinks for the Concert Cafe – and volunteers to work in the concert cafe as well!

Please review the Signupgenius link below, and sign up for a slot (or two!)

As always, we appreciate your support!

Full Orchestra

Symphony Members:  Full Orchestra rehearsal will be this Friday and a final run through on stage next Tuesday.

Fulton County Honor Orchestra

The following orchestra students performed in the Fulton County Schools Honor Orchestra at Centennial High School on November 14 under the guest direction of Mr. John Clinton.

Congratulations to:

  • Nathaly J.
  • Emily P.
  • Palin B.
  • Rohit D.
  • Nicole H.
  • Matthew L.
  • Eileen L.
  • Sarang P.
  • Anna Zhu

We are proud of you and thankful that you represented the AHS Orchestra!

KSU Orchestra Invitational

Congratulations to the Philharmonia, Sinfonia, and Symphony Strings for their great performances at the KSU Orchestra Invitational on November 3. Some highlights of the day included the clinic with Dr. Michael Alexander of Baylor University and lunch at KSU’s award-winning dining facility, The Commons.  The feedback we received from KSU was very helpful and the performance venue was incredible.

You can listen to recordings here:

GMEA Student Composition Contest Winner

Congratulations to Brian S. (Philharmonia) for being selected as a winner of the GMEA Student Composition contest.  His piece “Nightingale’s Anthem” will be premiered at the GMEA conference in late January.

Final Exam

We will begin reviewing for the orchestra written final exam after the winter concert.  It will be 100 questions, multiple choice.

Holiday Shopping at Amazon to Benefit the AHSO

This holiday season, remind yourself to do your shopping at and Amazon will donate to Alpharetta High School Orchestra Association Inc.

Shop for everyone on your gift list this holiday at and Amazon donates to Alpharetta High School Orchestra Association Inc.  

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose from nearly one million organizations to support.

Holiday Gifts for String Players

Looking for some holiday gift ideas for your favorite string player?? Some ideas include:

  • High quality strings (Dr. Laux can provide recommendations)
  • Rosin
  • Instrument polishing cloth
  • Upgraded bow
  • Upgraded instrument
  • An electric instrument
  • Music books
  • Gift Certificates to a music shop
  • Gift certificates to the Google/App Store for tuner and metronome apps

Welcome New Students!

  • Sara A. (Philharmonia)
  • Angel P. (Concert Orchestra)

We are glad you are with us!!

Orchestra Newsletter – 10-16-2017

Fall Concert Wrap-Up

Students — What great performances at “Fall Back to Mozart” Concert! I was so impressed with your progress in such a short time.  Let’s keep it going and it will be amazing to see where we are in April!

Thank you to the leadership team for your assistance with set-up and tear down. Also, special thanks to the AHSOA parents who set up and ran the concert cafe.  It always looks so nice!

Read the review of our concert.

Program Book – Advertisement Campaign

Our program book advertisement campaign is technically over, however Dr. Laux can still accept your advertisements!!

Parents, please consider taking out a personal ad for your special string player!!

We are also selling business advertisements!  If you own a business (or know someone who does), please consider purchasing a spot in our program book.  Business card, quarter page, half page, and full pages sizes are available.

Download the AHSO Program Book Advertisement Order Form 2017-2018

KSU Orchestra Invitational

The Philharmonia, Sinfonia, and Symphony Strings will be performing at the KSU Orchestra Invitational on Friday, November 3 at Kennesaw State University’s incredible Bailey Performance Center.  Students will be excused from classes on that day.

Permission forms for the event went out today and should be returned by this Friday, October 20. Download them below…

2017 KSU Orchestra Invitational Permission Forms

Tentative Itinerary – Friday, November 3

9:00 AM – Leave AHS for Kennesaw State University
10:15 AM – Philharmonia warm-up
11:00 AM – Philharmonia performance
11:45 AM – Sinfonia warm up
12:30 Sinfonia performance
1:15 PM Lunch at KSU dining facility, The Commons
2:45 Symphony warm-up
3:30 Symphony performance
4:30 PM Leave KSU for AHS
5:45 PM Arrive back at AHS

PARENTS!  If you are interested in chaperoning for this event, please sign up using this Sign-Up Genius form. We need 10 chaperones (parent representatives from Philharmonia, Sinfonia, and Symphony).

Note:  Concert Orchestra will not attend the KSU Invitational.

AHSO Spirit wear!

New this year, Alpharetta Orchestra is offering spirit wear for students, friends and family! Please see the link below to our spirit wear website for easy online ordering and paying. The web store closes on October 29 so get your orders in before then! All items will be delivered in bulk to school about 2-3 weeks after the webstore closes, and will be distributed to students. An added bonus is that a portion of the proceeds comes back to the Orchestra!
Please contact our Spirit Wear Coordinators, Dianne Holmquist ( or Resa Kinsey ( if you have any questions.

All-State Orchestra Auditions – First Round

The first round of All-State Orchestra Auditions was last Saturday. Congratulations to the 24 AHS students who moved on to the second round!

Student Recognition

Special thanks to Vivia, Eileen, Kaci, and Adam for performing at Creekview Elementary’s Reflections event last week.  They were early risers and performed for a large number of elementary students and parents.  We appreciate your efforts!!

Fulton County Honor Orchestra

Event Information:

Audition Information & Excerpts:

Audition Date: Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Audition Site: Centennial High School

Event Dates: Monday, November 14 (evening) and Tuesday, November 15 (all day)

AHSO 2017-2018 T-Shirt

Congratulations to Andrew M. for winning the annual t-shirt design contest.  Each student will receive a shirt with their SPF payment. The order for shirts will be placed soon.

Winter Concert 

Save the date! The AHS Orchestras will hold their Winter Concert on Tuesday, December 12 at 6:30 PM. This concert will include the 8th grade orchestras from Webb Bridge MS and Hopewell MS along with the debut of the 2017-2018 AHS Symphony Orchestra! The concert will conclude with Leroy Anderson’s Christmas Festival.

(Please note the start time of 6:30 PM to better accommodate the middle school students.)

Orchestra Newsletter 09-17-2017

Home Practice

All students should be practicing regularly at home. Orchestra students’ daily homework includes learning all notes, rests, and rhythms for all music in the folder. Students should come to class with their music prepared. To maximize efficiency, students should practice on areas of their music that are the most difficult and should not simply play through the part. Careful, slow practice is the best. You should not sound “good” while practicing!!

Daily rehearsals in class are focused on building and refining the ensemble sound, not learning notes. A rehearsal should include work on ensemble articulation, precision, blend, balance, dynamics, phrasing, and more.

Please do your part by practicing and coming to class prepared!!

Folder & Pencil Check

Students – we will have a folder check in class tomorrow (Monday, September 18). Please be sure you have your music folders, complete with every piece and your name written on each piece. You should also have all fingering/bowing changes marked on your music.

“Fall Back To Mozart” Concert

Our first concert is entitled “Fall Back to Mozart” and each orchestra will be featuring one piece by legendary Classical composer, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Fall Concert is coming up quickly, especially because we lost three rehearsal days last week due to the storm. Students, please see the note above on practicing!!

We look forward to seeing you on Thursday, September 28 at 7:00 PM. As always, the concerts are free and open to the public, so invite your friends and families!

Students should plan on arriving at about 6:00 PM dressed in full uniform.  This concert should last about an hour.

Concert Photos & Video

If you are able to video record or take photos at the concert, I would greatly appreciate it.  Please let Dr. Laux know if you are able to help! There’s always so much going on and I love having quality shots to share on the website and would like to fill up our YouTube channel with more concert video.

Concert Expectations

  • Students must be in proper concert attire.  Failure to do so will result in a lowered concert grade (15% of your semester grade)
  • Students must stay for the entire concert, regardless of when they perform.
  • Students should be on their best behavior as both a performer and audience member.
  • There should be no talking during the performances
  • All electronic devices should be switched OFF during the concert and should not be brought on stage.
  • Students are expected to help with tear down and final clean up.

Concert Cafe

At each concert, the AHSOA will have snacks, yummy treats and flowers for sale during our concert. Please sign up to donate or bring for the concert cafe.


Dresses were distributed last week. Please note that most dresses will need to be hemmed by a seamstress.

Tuxedos will be delivered and distributed this Monday or Tuesday. Please ensure that your tuxedo fits properly.

Tanner Photography Family Portrait Fundraiser

Tanner Portrait Studio teams up with the Alpharetta High Schools Orchestra Association for a family portrait event! Don’t blink! Time flies and, sooner than you think, your student will be moving on to college! Now’s the time to take a great family portrait!

For a $25.00 DONATION TO AHSOA, the deal includes the sitting fee & an 11”X14” family portrait print, Courtesy of Tanner Family Portraits ($165.00 Value)

Photos will be taken at the beautiful Mill Creek Pond located at 30000 Mill Creek Ave in Alpharetta on Sunday, October 15 from 9:30am – 2:00pm. Don’t Wait! Sign up for a spot now as availability is limited!


Note: The offer is limited to one per family – Per School Season. In the event of inclement weather the photo sessions will be moved indoors to Tanner Studio 3050 Royal Blvd South, Suite 105 Alpharetta. For your convenience, additional prints will be available to order or purchase at your viewing appointment.

Direct Questions To: Sheila Glenn0McVay at

Orchestra/String Events at KSU

North Georgia Honor Orchestra:
Application/online audition deadline is October 1

KSU School of Music Young Artists Competition:

KSU String Day:

Domino’s Slice the Price of Pizza Card Fundraiser

Domino’s cards will be distributed in class tomorrow, Monday, September 17.  Please ensure that the cards get delivered promptly and thank them for supporting the orchestra!

SPF (Student Participation Fee) Overdue

The Student Participation Fee of $120 is now overdue. These fees are very important for clubs, co-curricular, and extra-curricular activities to be able to function at their highest .Please contact Dr. Laux if you need to make payment arrangements.

Final Reminders!

Just a quick note to remind you about a few things that are due tomorrow, August 31, 2017.

Domino’s Slice the Price of Pizza Card Fundraiser

Please bring your completed order form, prepaid orders and put in an envelope and drop to the collection box.  We accept cash and checks payable to AHSOA.

The flyer and information can be downloaded here. (PDF)


Please send in your Student Participation Fee of $120.  Checks should be made payable to AHSOA.  Please contact Dr. Laux if you need to make payment arrangements.

Dress Payments

Dresses are in and will be distributed tomorrow to those who have paid.  The cost is $65 payable to AHSOA.

All-State Audition Fee

Please submit your audition fee of $25 payable to AHSOA.  Put in an envelope and drop in the lock box.  Be sure you have completed the online form so Dr. Laux knows you will be auditioning.


Tuxedo payments go directly to Tuxedo Warehouse.  The easiest way is to call them and pay over the phone at 470-259-8552. The cost is $117.17 including tax.




Dr. Laux

Orchestra Newsletter – 08-23-2017

There is a lot of important information below!

Potluck Dinner Thank You’s

Special thanks to the AHSOA Board and the student leadership team for all of their work organizing, setting up, and cleaning up for our Annual Potluck Dinner. There were approximately 250 RSVPs which was the most we have had!  It was nice speaking with you and getting to know some of you as well.

“Bach to School” Social Wrap-Up

Our first annual “Bach to School” social during the first week of school was a success!  The students had a great time getting to know each other and free pizza and dessert isn’t a bad thing either!

Special thanks to Jason Juang and Kieren Holmquist for taking photos of the event.  You can see the photos here.


All students must wear the proper uniform.

  • Girls: Orchestra dress, black socks or hose, black dress shoes.
  • Boys: Black Tuxedo, white shirt, black bow tie and cummerbund, black socks, black dress shoes.

Boys Uniform

If you are new to the program, you were measured by Tuxedo Wearhouse and need to register  for your tuxedo on their website. The cost is $117.17 and the uniform will be delivered to school.

If you are a returning student and your tuxedo is too small, the company offers a very generous trade-in credit to help offset the cost of a new tuxedo.  Please see the attached flyer for details.

Please be sure to try on your tuxedo to make sure it fits NOW so you have plenty of time to prepare for the concert in case it is too small.

Girls Uniform

The girls dresses are ordered from Southeastern Apparel by the AHSOA.  We have ordered a size run from 0-20 and girls will be able to try on their dresses to ensure a perfect fit.  Dresses usually need to be hemmed for appropriate length.  Be sure to take your shoes when visiting a tailor and plan ahead so you are not in a pinch for the first concert.

The cost of the dress is $65 and should be paid ASAP or by August 31.  Checks should be made payable to AHSOA.

Student Participation Fee (SPF)

Each family is expected to pay the student participation fee of $120.  As was explained at the potluck dinner, the SPF allows the orchestra to function and we could not provide the experiences we do without everyone contributing their fair share. The AHSOA would like the SPF paid by September 1. Please let Dr. Laux know if need to make special payment arrangements or if you have any questions or concerns.

Payments can be brought in to school and should be labeled in one of the provided envelopes and placed into the drop box in the back of the orchestra room.

Domino’s Pizza Card Fundraiser

Our Domino’s BOGO pizza card fundraiser is in full swing.  Our goal is 12 cards sold per student.  The cards sell for $10 and includes unlimited use of BOGO pizzas (any kind, any amount) until the end of June 2018.  After one use, the card has paid for itself!

We are taking orders (pre-paid) and the money (cash or checks to AHSOA) is due on Thursday, August 31!

The flyer and information can be downloaded here. (PDF)

GMEA All-State Orchestra Auditions

Students wishing to audition for the All-State Orchestras should use this online form to let Dr. Laux they want to audition. The completed online form, along with $25 audition fee, payable to AHSOA, should be turned in by August 31.

First Playing Assessment

At this time, all students should have played their first playing assessment for Dr. Laux.  All classes performed scales for the first assessment.

Anchor Time – “Jam Session”

Anchor Time is an enrichment period offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  The Orchestra will be offering a “Jam Session” anchor time that students can use for solo practice or collaboration in small groups.  Students will sign up this week and will start in early September.

Beethoven Chamber Orchestra

Today we welcomed Thomas Ludwig, conductor of the Beethoven Chamber Orchestra today in 4th period to talk about his enesemble.  He wanted to share a video of one of this students playing with the orchestra. Here is the link for Beethoven Chamber Orchestra of Sophia Ho playing the Paganini Violin Concerto.

In the next newsletter….

  •  Trip to Ecuador – Interest Survey
  •  Program Book
  • Orchestra Spirit Wear

Potluck Dinner Reminder

Dear Parents and Students,

Don’t forget about our annual Orchestra Potluck Dinner this Wednesday, August 16 at 6:30 PM in the AHS Cafeteria!

For each orchestra student attending, we ask that at least one parent/guardian attend, if possible, but families are welcome! It will be a grand night of food, so bring your appetites!

The food assignments will be determined by the student’s primary instrument and are as follows:

  • Violin & Cello – Favorite Main Dish
  • Viola –  Salad/Vegetables/Fruits
  • String Bass & Harp –  Desserts

Items of Note:

  • Please include an ingredients side card beside the dish for those who have allergies. We have many students with food related allergies to things such as nuts, eggs, milk, etc…
  • Please bring a serving utensil for your dish!
  • Please bring your checkbook to pay for uniforms, student performance fees, etc.

We will take an informal RSVP from students in class so that we may get an approximate count of who will attend.  Looking forward to seeing you all there!