NCO 2017 Auditions

(111 Posts)
stringchild Thu 29-Sep-16 22:24:38

Starting the annual thread for those who have dc auditioning this year, as audition round starts shortly. DD auditions later in october.

Wafflenose Fri 30-Sep-16 09:09:22

My 10 year old is auditioning on flute in a few weeks. She was in Under 10s last year and Under 11s this year - I reckon it's going to be substantially harder for Under 12s because quite a few DCs are at music schools now. We have managed to keep DD in her village primary (she changes school next year). She's chosen her pieces and they were sounding lovely... then got overcooked and tangled up, so I've told her to stop playing them for a few days, then resume very slowly and build them back up again. She's worried about the sight reading, but that's usually her strong point.

I have a 9 year old clarinet pupil auditioning for the first time, and the same thing has happened to her! One piece is great, and she's playing it in a concert soon, as a warm-up. The other one got a bit mangled, so we are resting it for a week. I hope that strategy works...

TRL Fri 30-Sep-16 10:19:42

My 10 year old is also auditioning just before half term. She was in U10's this year and has really enjoyed the experience. She's resurrecting her pieces from last term as the the pieces she's preparing for auditions later this term are not ready, but we've found that she's forgotten chunks of one piece particularly. It also seems trickier to play 'in the moment' with pieces you've mentally shelved as they're sounding slightly wooden, go through the motions at the moment, which is definitely not normal for her. Might try your idea, Waffle, of resting then picking up gradually. She's very relaxed about the audition though, maybe too relaxed?!?!

Musicdoc Fri 30-Sep-16 10:32:55

Thanks Waffle.... our auditions are less than two weeks away!
I have DS11 who is auditioning for U12s on the cello, having been in U11s and U10s the last two years. Each summer he has taken a grade exam, and each autumn has resurrected (and got bored of) two of his pieces for his audition. So two G6 pieces which could sound excellent but really sound scrappy due to the boredom element... and U12s tends to be more competitive. He has loved the experience and chosen more orchestras to play in in his spare time though...

I also have DD9 who has been in Training Orchestra for 2 years and going for U10s this time. She is playing a G7 piece and another G6 standard - neither of them are quite there yet (G7 planned for December).

On the plus side both of them have improved their sight reading skills with being in NCO so we will see.... last year it took forever for DS to get his results which was nerve wracking!

I think being relaxed about the audition helps - and it definitely helps to be relaxed in the audition. I have a feeling they like children with some character in the audition room.

stringchild Fri 30-Sep-16 11:00:41

DD has been in the NCO for 3years (last yr in under 11s) and is taking nothing for granted esp seeing the standard of some her peers this summer; she is doing some new pieces (auditioning on two instruments) and one very safe and reliable lower grade one. The new pieces are actually for school auditions so will be getting a lot of value from them over the next 4 months.

Wafflenose Fri 30-Sep-16 11:48:39

We always go a grade or two lower for auditions. She is learning Grade 7 pieces now, but sticking to Grade 6-ish for the audition, and seeing just how much she can do with them. A girl at my work tried to push herself last year, and played pieces from the grade above. She is probably better than DD, but didn't get in.

My little 9 year old pupil is Grade 4 clarinet and is playing one piece at that level, and a very much easier one.

NotAMusician Fri 30-Sep-16 15:04:43

DS's audition next Wednesday. Two pieces learnt himself. Aim to regional only.

Eroica Fri 30-Sep-16 15:12:36

Dd is going for U11 this year, she did U10 in the summer and loved it.
Not sure about going down a grade for audition pieces- last year she chose something herself, I think it was four grades above her grade at the time, and just willed herself to learn it. It paid off! But she was a lower official grade than almost everyone she met on the course, perhaps because she had only been playing a year or so before the audition.

stringchild Fri 30-Sep-16 18:09:53

Eroica - I agree that the choice depends on lots of things; I think most important is at they love th epicene and show some character, as Musicdoc says. Of course something they just can't play would be a bit wasted 😀

Paulweller11 Fri 30-Sep-16 21:54:27

9yr old is auditioning for strings,
7 yr old is auditioning for percussion (bit of a long shot!) But they don't seem to have many auditioning for percussion- so thought why not?! Only two weeks to go though?! Eek!

Greenleave Fri 30-Sep-16 22:26:34

We just registered...literally just now, the last day. Well, its more for an experience and an excuse to motivate my nearly 9 yrs old to practise. The worst case, I loose £25(no coffee for me the next few weeks). Will start googling what is NCO and what does it do...now

stringchild Sun 02-Oct-16 10:12:41

Green - welcome; DD and her friends has always had a great time auditioning whatever the outcome - the feedback is so co structure.

Good luck to this week's auditions - must be special to walk into the RAH for an audition😀

stringchild Sun 02-Oct-16 10:13:30

Or even 'constructive'!

woolleybear Sun 02-Oct-16 20:58:38

Good luck all, dd struggling with the combination of homework and practice this year so we decided not to attempt it.

Eroica Mon 03-Oct-16 19:46:02

Greenleave - sorry will put this on here, as the musicians thread is always so long, and I cannot keep up.
Don't worry about what grade your child is, or the pieces they're playing for NCO. DD was only grade 2 last year, and they looked more for musicality, and potential rather than what she's actually achieved already. She hadn't been playing clarinet as long as her first instrument (piano, so not orchestral!). Her audition report commented on her sight-reading, rhythm, approach etc. They still gave her a place smile

Greenleave Mon 03-Oct-16 21:57:16

Thanks all for your kind words, we have received confirmation date and time today, it will be in couple of weeks.

I told her tonight about it saying "I must have to let you try because its unfair to hide it away from you. The fact is both of us dont think its a good idea putting bunch of musical kids in a place far away from home and having crazy/fun moments all the time with conductors shouting and running and us paying for it". I had some one tickling with laughter(even she is very poor with her cold). Hopefully this will boost her motivation for practice(when she gets better).

stringchild Tue 04-Oct-16 08:34:46

Green - that's so lovely!

Good luck to those auditioning today.

NotAMusician Wed 05-Oct-16 11:13:15

On the way to pick up DS of his last Grammar 11+ test. NCO audition this afternoon. What a fun day!

TRL Wed 05-Oct-16 12:26:19

Oh my goodness NotA, that's quite a day - hope it all goes well.

stringchild Wed 05-Oct-16 14:43:35

NotA - well he deserves a treat later and probably you do too!

Woolley - we also wondered if we could do everything justice this year; we will see....

NotAMusician Wed 05-Oct-16 16:45:12

DS got the treat between. DS was asked why he only attended the regional last two years. I don't think Rodger is impressed with DS answer.

Greenleave Wed 05-Oct-16 18:34:59

NotA: what a day for you two. Hope is tucked at home with every treat he needs. And the question, I dont realise they ask question. It sounds like an interview to me. Best of luck NotA, he has attended the last 2 regional that is very impressive to me

stringchild Wed 05-Oct-16 19:10:52

hi NotA - did he get into the age banded orchestras but chose to just do the regionals? After the results, do share DS's answer! In any event, i hope he enjoyed today!

Green - not an interview, but they do put them at their ease, and ask them the occasional question, but nothing that needs preparing, in our experience at least.

Wafflenose Wed 05-Oct-16 19:50:38

Some parents on here report that the panel don't speak at all! I guess it just depends who you get. One of them commented on the difficulty of DD's piano part last year. I was right at my technical limit with Faure's Sicilienne, so someone else is playing for her this year!

Paulweller11 Wed 05-Oct-16 20:14:15

Has anyone's child auditioned/auditioning for percussion, I've entered my dd (7yr old), she's only gr2 on drum kit and probably similar standard on xylophone and snare.
(She's not had xylophone long, but she has done piano, so she's picked it up quite quickly)
Starting to think it's a long shot, as audition gets closer....

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