The Audition

Supporting you throughout the audition process

Preparing for an audition can be a daunting prospect, especially after a year of disruption and uncertainty. We want to give candidates as much support as we can with their audition preparation so that every young person can give their very best performance. The audition process will be blended digital and live, designed to give musicians a brilliant immersion into NYO and an opportunity to show us what they can do on their instrument.  


Most instruments have two rounds of auditions. The first round will be Video Audition and the final round auditions will be at an in-person Assessment Day.


Please note that double bass, tuba, harp and percussion players, as well as all NYO 2021 musicians will not have to submit a video audition and will be invited straight to the Assessment Days.


We are inviting applications for saxophone and keyboard but are not yet arranging auditions. Please complete your application and we’ll be in touch to arrange an audition once our planning for 2022 has progressed.


We know many of you had a tricky pandemic year. We urge you to apply even if your music making isn’t where you expected it to be. This process is designed for us to get to know you and help you find out which part of NYO community you can access, and what your journey with NYO can be.


Below we have detailed the process we will be going through this year to help you fulfil your potential throughout the audition process. Please download and read through our Auditions Information Sheet below, which includes details of the music you need to prepare, the video submission requirements & the deadlines and results days. For additional information about your application and the final round assessment day for your instrument, please download and read the documents below.




If you are offered a place in NYO, you will be asked to confirm your commitment to being part of the whole range – NYO orchestral residencies, tour dates and performances and between 5-10 days of NYO Inspire activity.  


If you are not chosen this time, but will still be eligible next year, we hope you will continue practising and enjoying your music and apply again. A lot of musicians don’t get a place the first year they audition, and it’s worth applying for the opportunity to learn about the process and to absorb tips to improve your playing from the audition panel and other candidates. 



NYO Inspire is our ground-breaking programme for young people who are underrepresented in the world of orchestral music: musicians who attend a state school, home-schooled musicians, and musicians who are Black, Asian or ethnically diverse. 


NYO Inspire musicians are part of the NYO community, and work closely with NYO musicians. They come together for orchestral and ensemble projects throughout the year to develop their ensemble and musicianship skills, creative skills and own personal performance. The work within the spirit and ethos of NYO. 


Musicians who put themselves forwards for NYO Auditions and are not yet successful will often benefit from taking part in NYO Inspire activity. Young people who are eligible, will be automatically considered for NYO Inspire so that we can continue to keep in touch with you and invest in your progression and your future. 


If you are unsure whether or not to apply for NYO or NYO Inspire, we would advise you to get in touch with us at and we would be happy to answer your questions. You do not need to fill in two application forms; musicians applying to be in NYO who are eligible will also be considered for NYO Inspire activity. 


We anticipate sending results from the Video Auditions on or around Monday 19 July 2021. Results from the Assessment Days will be shared on or around Friday 24 September 2021. 


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