The Safaricom Youth Orchestra: Home of Great Musicians!

Safaricom Youth Orchestra

Happy Thursday my friends! 😀 This past weekend, I got an invite to attend the Safaricom Youth Orchestra Graduation. It was my first time attending one of their events… And I must say- it was worth the time!

Come along as we go on an exceptional musical journey! 😀

But before we get into the happenings of the graduation day, let’s explore this question: What is the Safaricom Youth Orchestra

All You Need To Know About the Safaricom Youth Orchestra!

Perhaps you’ve come across the Safaricom Youth Orchestra events in the past… And if you are like me, you’re probably curious to learn more about what it’s all about…

In 2014, Bob Collymore launched the Safaricom Youth Orchestra with the vision of bringing together gifted students and experienced tutors to make music. The group is made up of musicians aged between 10-17years old.

Safaricom PLC has supported the Safaricom Youth Orchestra for the past 9 years, thus making the dreams of many a young musicians come true! 

These budding musicians hail from different backgrounds and specialize in woodwinds, brass, percussion, and string instruments.

To date, at least 170 students have graduated from the Safaricom Youth Orchestra. Some alumni have even become tutors.

Safaricom Youth Orchestra

In 2021, they had to adapt due to the disruptions of the pandemic. Hence, Safaricom provided over 80 members with 4G-enabled mobile handsets and airtime to enable them to attend rehearsals virtually.

However, in 2022, the members were able to resume their in-person rehearsals. And though it took a while to get their groove back, their hard work, dedication and passion has paid off! 

Graduation Day… Enter Class of 2023!

The day is Sunday, 2nd April 2023. Graduation Day. So, I asked my friend Dicie Okaya to accompany me to the event. Because like all good things, music tastes better when shared. 🙂

They’ve reserved the Auditorium at Jalaram Temple for this special occasion. The stage is set… Their seats are arranged meticulously on stage. 16 certificates and glass trophies are placed on a small table at the very front; a symbol of what is to come. 


The students look ready. How can they not be? They’ve spent countless hours practicing, and sacrificing their precious sleep, on countless Saturday mornings.

This is their moment… The moment when they showcase their skills to their parents, friends, and a bunch of strangers like us.

If you reach out your hand, you can almost touch the excitement hanging in the air… The students take their places. The choir conductor gives his signal… Let the show begin! 😀

Safaricom Youth Orchestra

When the music fills the room, we are transported to another world. A world where notes and symphonies speak to soul. It is beautiful and soulful. It is melodious and harmonious! 

You can tell that they are confident with their craft. It’s in the way each student has taken command of their instrument. We are entranced!

A Mashup of Generations… Music is a universal language!

The ‘cherry on top’ moment happens when Them Mushrooms joins the students on stage to perform some of their beloved classics: Zilizopendwa, Jambo Bwana & Nyambura. 

And at that point in time, it is impossible to tell young from old, dark from brown… In that room, on that stage, they are all the same- musicians who’re doing what they love.


I get goosebumps now, just thinking about it now… 🙂

Later on, members of the Class of 2023 walk the stage to receive their certificates from Peter Ndegwa, the CEO of Safaricom PLC… Cheered on by their mates, friends and family, it is such a beautiful thing to witness! 


“The youth is the future of this country… We can’t do it alone, we do it through partnership with others who have passion for what they do…. Music can give you the power to do what you want to do.”

~Peter Ndegwa, CEO- Safaricom PLC

Safaricom Youth Orchestra

Congratulations to the graduating class of 2023!

This is the beauty of supporting the arts and nurturing young dreams… I applaud Safaricom for creating the Safaricom Youth Orchestra, and providing such opportunities!

P.S. You can read more about the registration process for new SYO students HERE.

Thank you for reading! I hope you are inspired to give your own dreams a chance! I would love to hear from you!

Leave a comment down below, and I’ll be certain to respond!

In the meantime, I wish you and your loved ones a wonderful Easter weekend!

<< Stay. Inspired. Always. >>

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  • Reply
    Diana Justus
    April 6, 2023 at 7:33 pm

    First time I heard the orchestra play was in the Safaricom Jazz festival I think 2010/2011 and it was beautiful. Insightful piece.

    • Reply
      Scrapbook Journeys
      April 6, 2023 at 8:58 pm

      Oh wow! That must have been lovely! I would love to attend a Safaricom Jazz Festival after this! Thank you for reading Diana

  • Reply
    April 6, 2023 at 6:21 pm

    Reading this takes me back to the amazing experience…Safaricom Youth Orchestra is something else completely

  • Reply
    April 6, 2023 at 6:19 pm

    Beautiful piece Marion…Reading this takes me back to the amazing experience…Safaricom Youth Orchestra is something else completely

    • Reply
      Scrapbook Journeys
      April 6, 2023 at 8:57 pm

      I am glad you liked the piece! It was awesome getting to share this experience Dicie! Fun times! Thank you for reading

  • Reply
    April 6, 2023 at 3:35 pm

    Mmmh.. sounds and feels so exquisite.
    An event worth experiencing for sure.

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