NYO is recruiting young musicians to join us on our residencies, playing orchestral keyboard parts.

This is an exciting opportunity for any young pianists between the ages of 13-19 to develop your piano playing in an orchestral direction. We will provide world class tutoring and experience playing in large scale orchestral repertoire in major concert halls across the UK. You will work alongside other talented and like-minded young musicians and with first-rate artists at a national level.


We are looking for a small pool of 2-4 musicians who will join as the NYO Keyboard section, 2018. We will allocate residencies and projects between the keyboard section as the repertoire dictates. Keyboard parts cover orchestral piano, celeste and occasionally organ parts. We may audition separately for organ parts dependant on repertoire: if you are only interested in opportunities for organ, please enquire separately by emailing auditions@nyo.org.uk. Most residencies require two musicians from the section, but sometimes we may ask more to attend.


Detailed information about applying for NYO and the audition process can be found in the 'Join NYO 2018' area of our website.  See below for further information about applying to be an NYO Pianist.



How to apply



The Audition






How to apply

Please complete the form located here by Monday 3 July 2017. If you would like to edit your answers after submitting (the form is quite long and so you might not be able to do it all in one go!), the form will give you a code so that you can return to it another time. All amendments must be received by the deadline of Monday 3 July.

The application is an online form that mostly asks you to tick boxes and complete short open questions. There are one or two areas where you need to write a bit more about yourself and about your interest in NYO.

There are some questions that you may need your parents or guardians to help you with. We ask this information so that we are able to statistically report back to the Arts Council and other high level funders. The Arts Council and other funders will not be given any personal information. This informational will not be used for any other purpose in NYO and will not be passed on to any other third party.

After the deadline, NYO will shortlist applications for auditions. We will inform all applicants of the results of this shortlisting by 1 August. We are looking for an interest in and experience of orchestral playing when we shortlist from your application.

If you are offered an audition, we will give you your audition date, time and venue via email in August, including information about parking, public transport, and anything else you need to know.

How much do auditions cost?
Auditions are free, and take place in London. We have travel bursaries available to help with costs to and from the audition venue. For further information, please email info@nyo.org.uk.


The Audition

The audition panel will consist of an NYO Keyboard Tutor and a member of the NYO management team. Sometimes additional members of NYO staff will join the panel. You will be introduced to everyone on the panel when you go in to your audition. They are friendly, welcoming and approachable and want you to have a positive experience with us.


Your audition will consist of four elements:


1.   Performance of your chosen piece

In the first part of your NYO audition you will play a piece of your own choice for the panel. You will be asked to play for around three minutes in total. You can choose an excerpt from a longer piece, but please bear the time limit in mind, otherwise you may be asked to stop before the end of your performance. Always choose a work you know well and enjoy playing, as this will help you perform at your best. Please bring a copy of your piece for the panel. 

Have a look at our website here for tips on how to choose and prepare your pieces.


2.  Musical excerpts

The excerpts are a central and vital part of your audition. We recommend you prepare very well indeed and look at them well in advance of your audition. Excerpts are chosen so that you can demonstrate your understanding of orchestral musicianship in demanding repertoire and in a musical context. They enable the audition panel to establish how players of differing standards address the technical and musical challenges in the same repertoire. Please pay very careful and thorough attention to all of the musical details of the excerpts (including tempo and markings).


Excerpts are available here. Please prepare all excerpts.


3.  Sight reading
This is to assess how you respond to music that has not had the advantage of being fully prepared. It gives the panel a clear indication of your musical strengths and areas of improvement and also how you might approach a rehearsal when we are working on a new commission. We might also ask you to play some simple sight reading in a duet with our NYO Tutor to get an idea of how you might approach an ensemble context.


4.  Short interview

NYO auditions is the perfect moment for us to get to know you better in person, so we ask you for a quick chat after hearing you play. We want to find out a bit about what you think you’ll bring to NYO and what you hope to gain from being in the orchestra. We might ask you about some things which you have written about in your application form. You might want to think about what we may expect of you as musicians and role models at NYO. It is a good opportunity for you to ask us any questions you have about us, too. We may also take this moment to talk about progress in your playing and give you any advice after hearing you play.




NYO is a charitable organisation and fundraises in order to provide free auditions for everyone. Few, if any, comparable organisations in the classical music world do this. Please remember this if you consider withdrawing your application. If you do need to withdraw, we ask you to give at least 30 days notice. You can do this via the website. In exceptional circumstances, such as illness, you will need to send in a doctor’s note, or an email detailing the reason. If you are unable to do this within four weeks after the audition date, we will ask you to make a donation of £150 to cover the cost of your unused audition, so we can ensure that teenage musicians can continue to have free auditions in the future. In applying for an audition, you are agreeing to these terms.

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