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NYO-USA
Apprenticeships Application

Since 2014, Carnegie Hall has offered apprenticeships to students in roles beyond instrumental positions in NYO-USA to explore key aspects of the orchestral field. For 2018, positions are available for an apprentice music librarian, an apprentice orchestra manager, two apprentice conductors, and two apprentice composers. Open to students ages 16–19 who meet the same eligibility requirements as prospective NYO-USA instrumentalists, these rare opportunities are ideal for musicians who are interested in the possibility of taking their musical experience in a new direction. Apprentices will work alongside NYO-USA’s artistic and administrative staff and gain direct experience in their respective craft. Apprentice conductors and composers will spend three weeks with NYO-USA at Purchase College, SUNY. The apprentice librarian and orchestra manager will additionally join the orchestra on tour to continue to support the production and operations of NYO-USA through concerts and cultural-exchange activities in Asia. All apprentices are considered members of NYO-USA and share in all accommodation, meal, and travel arrangements with their fellow musicians. Apprenticeships are tuition- and expense-free, with the exception of the cost of the student’s travel to/from the New York City area at the start of the program and at the conclusion of the tour. (Financial aid is available for this travel expense to applicants demonstrating substantial financial need.)

Apprenticeship Opportunities

Orchestra Library Apprentice

Orchestra librarians have the important role of preparing all of the music a symphony orchestra uses in rehearsal and performance. This includes researching available editions, ensuring the material is as accurate as possible and marked consistently for all players and conductors, and preparing parts so that bowings are in sync. NYO-USA’s orchestra library apprentice will receive first-hand experience working alongside NYO-USA’s principal orchestra librarian during the orchestra’s residency and tour. The apprentice will also explore this little-known profession through meetings and conversations arranged by NYO-USA with leaders in the field. The interest and background of the apprentice will help shape the experience in order to introduce aspects of the field that are of special relevance.

The successful candidate for this apprenticeship will have a strong interest in printed music, the ability to read full scores, and strong organizational skills and attention to detail.

Orchestra Management Apprentice

This apprenticeship is an opportunity to work alongside NYO-USA’s orchestra personnel manager and other artistic and administrative staff to learn about the planning and execution of an orchestra’s activities in rehearsals and the successful presentation of concerts. Orchestra personnel managers are musicians who serve as the key liaison between and among conductors, players, and other administrative personnel. The apprentice will assist with seating assignments and rotation, rehearsal orders and timings, backstage logistics, and preparation of venues for rehearsals and concerts. He or she will also have a window into the larger planning of an orchestra tour, particularly from the perspective of ensuring that the artistic needs of the musicians are addressed as fully as possible.

The successful candidate will have experience as a member of instrumental ensembles, a general familiarity with orchestral music, and excellent communication and organizational abilities.

Apprentice Conductors

Two apprentice conductors will have a unique opportunity to receive mentoring in orchestral conducting from NYO-USA’s music staff, including Orchestra Director James Ross and the 2018 assistant conductors. They will attend all orchestra rehearsals during the residency, as well as observe sectional rehearsals and faculty coachings. Some aspects of the apprenticeship may be tailored to the musical background of the student chosen, but it is expected that score-study sessions and very limited podium time will be offered. The conducting apprentices are also expected to have a role in understanding and supporting orchestra operations for NYO-USA and may be asked to assist the music library staff or management team with relevant administrative functions.

Candidates are not expected to have orchestral conducting experience, but should be able to demonstrate substantial instrumental experience and strong musicianship, as well as leadership potential. After reviewing audition submissions, James Ross and NYO-USA staff may conduct interviews via Skype prior to making a final selection.

Apprentice Composers

Two apprentice composers will be invited to spend three weeks with NYO-USA and its faculty and staff, and will be asked to bring one or more scores to Purchase College to be read/workshopped with musicians from the orchestra. One of the goals of the apprenticeship will be to give the composers experience with orchestration and writing for larger forces, and to create opportunities for dialogue between instrumentalists and composers who are peers.

Celebrated American composer Sean Shepherd, who wrote a new work (Magiya) for NYO-USA’s inaugural season in 2013, serves as a program director and mentor to the apprentices. Shepherd has held composition fellowships with The Cleveland Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, and Reno Philharmonic. Shepherd has had a number of notable premieres with Ensemble Intercontemporain (Paris), BBC Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, FLUX Quartet at the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, and St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble.

Timeline

The National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America (NYO-USA) invites young musicians ages 16–19 to audition for its 2018 season. All application materials must be submitted using an online form administered by Acceptd, a service that provides a digital audition platform to many performing arts schools and programs. In order to start the NYO-USA application, you will need to create an Acceptd account. (If you already have one, you can start a new application using your existing account.) Once you create an Acceptd account, you will be able to start the NYO-USA application and save your progress at any point. If this is your first experience with an online digital audition service, we encourage you to allow enough time to upload and review the required application videos to make certain they represent your playing as effectively as possible.

Students may apply for one or all apprenticeships based on their interests and experience. If you are applying for the apprentice conductor and/or apprentice composer position in addition to the orchestra library and/or orchestra management apprenticeship(s), a separate application for the apprentice conductor and/or apprentice composer position is required. There is no fee to apply. If you are under the age of 18 at the time of your application, permission of a parent or guardian is needed.

Application Requirements

Audition Videos

(Conducting Apprenticeship Applicants Only)

Conducting apprenticeship applicants to NYO-USA are required to record a series of audition videos similar to that of instrumental applicants. Each performance segment must be recorded in one take with no editing (though you may select the best of several takes). All videos must be recorded within eight months of the application deadline. Professional equipment and/or studio space is not necessary for a successful application to NYO-USA. With attention to a few details, your music making can be conveyed using readily available consumer electronics. Please refer to our Video Guidelines for additional information and suggestions for effectively recording your audition.

Required Video Segments:

Eligibility

Citizenship: NYO-USA is open to US citizens or permanent residents (green card holders) from all backgrounds.

Age Limit: You must be between the ages of 16 and 19 during the summer of your participation. For 2019, this means your birthdate must be between July 1, 1999, and June 30, 2003, without exception. Please note that if you are under 18 at the time that you apply, the consent of your parent or guardian is required.

Music Study: If you are enrolled full-time in a college-level conservatory or music department with instrumental performance as your major (or intended field of study), you are not eligible to join NYO-USA. There are no other educational or performance requirements for NYO-USA eligibility. Please see specific examples below.

Lead Donors: Hope and Robert F. Smith; Marina Kellen French and the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; Beatrice Santo Domingo; and Nicola and Beatrice Bulgari.

United Airlines

NYO-USA Sponsor: United Airlines®.

Additional funding has been provided by The Jack Benny Family Foundation; the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation; JMCMRJ Sorrell Foundation; and Jolyon Stern and Nelle Nugent.

Blavatnik Family Foundation

Founder Patrons; Blavatnik Family Foundation; Nicola and Beatrice Bulgari; The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation; Marina Kellen French and the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; The Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Family Foundation; Ronald O. Perelman; Robertson Foundation; Beatrice Santo Domingo; Hope and Robert F. Smith; Sarah Billinghurst Solomon and Howard Solomon; and Joan and Sanford I. Weill and the Weill Family Foundation.

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