Canada’s Only Professional Training Orchestra

The National Academy Orchestra of Canada (NAO) provides an extraordinary opportunity for emerging young Canadian professional musicians to work as apprentice musicians alongside established professionals from some of Canada’s finest orchestras.

(scroll down for more)


Musicians are paid a weekly salary during this nine week summer program geared at preparing them for life as professional musicians.

The NAO is made up of 42 young musicians who successfully complete the audition process each year. Mentors from across North America are hired to play alongside apprentice musicians to guide them and share their musical experiences.

The NAO performs at least one concert each week of completely different repertoire and the rehearsal schedule is set up to mimic that of a professional orchestra offering a glimpse at what can be expected in a typical orchestral career.

Weekly seminars are provided aimed at enhancing skills to help with employment opportunities as well as offering strategies to maintain a long and healthy career.

Boris Brott

O.C., O.Ont.,O. Que., D. Mus., LL.D

Boris Brott is one of the most internationally recognized Canadian conductors, holding major posts as Music Director and Principal Guest Conductor in Canada, Europe and the United States. He enjoys an international career as guest conductor, educator, motivational speaker and cultural ambassador.


The National Academy Orchestra of Canada was founded in 1989 by conductor Boris Brott and is primarily based in Hamilton, Ontario. It is recognized as a Canadian National School for professional training, and each winter over 450 potential applicants audition from across Canada for a position in the orchestra.

Since its inception, the NAO has been the orchestra-in-residence for the acclaimed Brott Music Festival, Canada’s largest orchestral music festival. Each season features guest concertmasters and mentors from across the country, guest conductors, and internationally-renowned soloists, with performance opportunities ranging from full orchestra, to opera, and chamber.