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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. 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. The apprentices will additionally join the orchestra on tour to continue to support the production and operations of NYO-USA through concerts and additional activities. 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.)

Timeline

The National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America (NYO-USA) invites young musicians ages 16–19 to audition for its 2021 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.

  • September 10, 2020: Application officially opens
  • November 12, 2020: Application deadline
  • December 1, 2020: Recommendation deadline
  • January 28, 2021: Applicants notified of status via email
  • July 2021: Program begins

Students may apply for one or all apprenticeships based on their interests and experience. 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

  • Video Essay: Please record an answer to one of the following questions. Please refer to our Video Guidelines for additional information and suggestions for effectively recording your video.
    • With which composer do you most identify and why?
    • What is a non-musical interest or activity that you are passionate about and why?
    • What is your favorite non-musical creative work (book, painting, poem, movie, etc.) and why does it speak to you?
  • Biographical Essay: In approximately 200–300 words, describe your background and musical/educational experience, including how participation in NYO-USA would help you achieve personal or artistic goals.
  • Recommendations: You will be asked to enter email addresses for two required references; a third is optional. Each reference will receive a link to an online recommendation form after you submit your completed application. Please note that this email will be sent directly from Acceptd. (not Carnegie Hall or NYO-USA). Your references will have until December 1, 2020 to complete and submit their confidential recommendations. References who can address both your personal and musical qualities, such as your music teacher(s) and/or ensemble conductor(s), are preferred.

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 2021, this means your birthdate must be between July 1, 2001, and June 30, 2005, 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.

Grade Level: Starting in 2020, participation in NYO-USA is limited to high school students within the age range above. You must be enrolled in high school or the equivalent level of homeschooling during the 2020–2021 academic year to be eligible for the 2021 NYO-USA program. Gap-year students who graduated from high school in 2020 (or earlier) are not eligible.

Travel Arrangements

Invited students and their parent/guardian(s) are expected to arrange air or ground transportation to attend the NYO-USA program, traveling to/from the New York City area on designated arrival and departure dates. (If applicable based on the tour flight itinerary, the option to depart from NYO-USA via an airport outside of New York may be provided.) Each student must also arrange to have a valid passport by the deadline provided for visa and other travel requirements. Assistance to cover these travel costs is available in cases of financial need, and information about how to apply for a travel award will be provided to accepted applicants.

All other travel associated with participation in NYO-USA, including international and domestic flights between tour cities, airport transfers, sightseeing excursions, and all other ground transportation (including any activities during the residency period taking place outside of the Purchase College campus) is arranged and paid for by Carnegie Hall.

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

Global Ambassadors: Hope and Robert F. Smith, and Maggie and Richard Tsai.

Major funding has been provided by The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The Carl Jacobs Foundation, JMCMRJ Sorrell Foundation, and Joyce and George Wein Foundation, Inc.

Additional funding has been provided by Sarah Arison, The Jack Benny Family Foundation, Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation, and Mary Anne Huntsman Morgan and The Huntsman Foundation.

Department of State United States of America logo

Public funding has been provided by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

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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