About the Organization

Founded in 1997, the All University Orchestra (AUO) of Carnegie Mellon University is a student organization that provides its members the opportunity to continue exploring the classical music repertoire and to further develop their overall musicianship. This organization, part of the Department of Student Activities, is open to all members of the University community. It is comprised of three ensembles: All University Orchestra, a symphonic orchestra; AUO Chamber Orchestra (formerly String Theory); and Flute Choir. Members are allowed to participate in one or all ensembles. For more information regarding our ensembles, please contact AUO Music Director, Dr. Jeffrey Klefstad at cmuauo@gmail.com.

The AUO Member Info Packet for 2022-2023 can be found here (PDF).


All University Orchestra (Symphony)

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The AUO Symphony performs 2 concerts each year from a varied selection of repertoire. Previous performances have included compositions by Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Beethoven, Rimsky-Korsakov, Copland, Barber, Rossini, Wagner, Verdi and many more. Additionally, the organization presents the Concerto & Aria Competition, which is open to all AUO members and students of the University. All prospective members are asked to audition so parts can be distributed appropriately.

Rehearsals are held Sunday evenings from 6:00 – 8:30 p.m. in the Studio Theater located in the University Center. Sectionals follow full rehearsal and are announced a week beforehand.

AUO Chamber Orchestra (Formerly String Theory)

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Established in Fall 2021 to accommodate more string and wind/brass players, the AUO Chamber Orchestra is a classical sized orchestra of approximately 50 players that performs repertoire from the baroque to 21st-century. The ensemble performs one concert each semester at venues including: Kresge Theater, Alumni Concert Hall, and/orSchenley Plaza. There are no auditions to participate in this ensemble, but prospective members are highly encouraged to submit an audition so the Music Director can assign parts that best suit the player's strengths. Please note that there are a limited number of wind players we can accommodate for this ensemble.

Rehearsals for 2022-2023 occur Saturday afternoons in the CUC Studio Theater between 2:00-4:00pm. If you are interested in this ensemble, please contact Dr. Jeffrey Klefstad (cmuauo@gmail.com).

Flutonium (Flute Choir)

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The AUO Flute Choir is a chamber ensemble run by members of the AUO. This ensemble performs along side the AUO Chamber Orchestra (formerly String Theory) during AUO Chamber concerts, which are presented each fall and spring semester. Repertoire performed include traditional pieces, as well as original compositions and arrangements.

Rehearsal time is TBD based on member availability. For more information, please email Tessa Vermeulen (tvermeul@andrew.cmu.edu).

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)



How big is the All University Orchestra Organization?

The AUO has over 120 members across three ensembles: the AUO Symphony, AUO Chamber Orchestra (formerly String Theory), and Flutonium (Flute Choir).

What is the time commitment?

AUO Symphony (approx. 3 hrs/week):

The AUO Symphony rehearses Sunday evenings from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m. in the UC Studio Theater with sectionals from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. throughout the academic year. Members are expected to be in the rehearsal space by 5:50, warmed-up and ready to play at 6:00. Many of our members still manage to be active with other organizations and ensembles on campus.

AUO Chamber Orchestra (approx. 1.5 hrs/week):

AUO Chamber Orchestra (formerly String Theory) rehearses Saturday afternoons in the CUC Studio Theater between 2:00-4:00pm. Members are expected to be in the rehearsal space by 1:50, warmed-up and ready to play at 2:00 p.m.

Flutonium (approx. 1 hr/week):

Flutonium rehearses Saturday afternoon from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m.

Does it cost money to be involved with the AUO?

Each student pays an activities fee that is included in your tuition package while attending CMU. We collect a membership due which is $10/semester. If you are in more than one of our ensembles, you only need to pay your due once. We are funded by the Department of Student Activities, but also pursue fundraising opportunities.

Where does the AUO perform?

AUO Symphony

The AUO symphony is fortunate to perform our concerts in the historic Carnegie Music Hall, and Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium.

AUO Chamber Orchestra (formerly String Theory) and Flutonium

These chamber ensembles perform both on and off-campus. In the past we have performed in Carnegie Music Hall, Schenley Plaza and Kresge Theater.

Do I have to audition to be a part of the AUO organization?

The only audition required is for AUO Symphony members. You do not need to audition to participate in the AUO Chamber Orchestra (formerly String Theory) or Flutonium.

How do I audition for the AUO Symphony?

Students interested in the AUO Symphony will audition by sending a video link to AUO Music Director, Dr. Jeffrey Klefstad, cmuauo@gmail.com. Audition materials are located under the AUO Symphony Audition tab.