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All those who auditioned for the NCO

(26 Posts)
socksnottights Thu 06-Dec-12 22:42:43

Results are out and am just wondering how everyone's DCs got on in their NCO auditions.

maggiethecat Thu 06-Dec-12 22:51:35

just xposted

sugaraddict Fri 07-Dec-12 09:12:02

DD didn't get into the under 12's (violin) after being in for the last 2 years. She's gutted. Her playing has improved beyond recognition over the last year so I can only imagine the competition was of a scarily high standard this year.

The problem is that she is not a very confident child and has gained a lot of self esteem from being in the NCO. It's her first major knock back and I'm really worried about how she is going to handle this. I know that life as a musician is like this and am hoping that she'll somehow manage to pick herself up, dust herself off and carry on. Any advice on how we can support her with this gratefully received

maggiethecat Fri 07-Dec-12 10:23:42

We impulsively applied 2 years ago for dd when she was 7. She got on reserve list but did not end up getting a place. I explained to her that it was not her time to get a place and that it was someone else's.
She seemed to understand at the time.
I think my dd is not hugely confident and so I have wondered how a negative result might have impacted on her but this is what life is about - learning to cope with success and failure.

Your dd should be proud that she has been in for 2 years. Who knows how places are determined - it may be that they think that other people should be given an opportunity. So if it came down to a choice between your dd and someone else who performed to a similar standard, they may have chosen the other if that person had never been offered

Highlight her achievements and give lots of cuddles and assurance.

sugaraddict Fri 07-Dec-12 11:11:31

Thanks Maggie. I've just had a bit of a sob as your words brought it home to me just how well she has done and how proud I am of her. She's overcome some fairly major personal difficulties to get this far and I know she can deal with this too with our support.

You're right, lots of cuddles required and then even more practice!

maggiethecat Fri 07-Dec-12 14:48:26

I know how you feel. It's a lot of commitment and hard work and we feel their pain.

One other thing to do might be to find some good easter or summer course to enroll her on, that's fun but challenging at the same time.

Dd did a local one last summer and she loved it - still plays some of the Japanese folk tunes that she learned.

Timetraveller Fri 07-Dec-12 14:49:59

Well, my dd didn't get into the under 13s. She doesn't mind, she'd realised that if she got a place she'd have to give up something else she'd rather do in the Easter holidays. It's the first time she's auditioned, so she doesn't really know what the experience would be like. She's only been learning the oboe for 3 years, so maybe she's just not experienced enough?
But I'm really disappointed, isn't that silly? I suppose I'm lucky that dd is ok about not getting in, it would be so much harder if she was upset.

maggiethecat Fri 07-Dec-12 15:57:23

Time, I remember your posts from the other thread. It's only her first time so she can learn from the experience.

Note carefully their comments for next time. Dd was told on first attempt to pay attention to straight bows. I don't know if they look at your earlier auditions to gauge progress but this time they did say how straight her bows were.

How did her sightreading go? For dd's first audition they kindly commented 'brave attempt'.

It's ok to feel disappointed, which parent doesn't want their child to get what they've worked for.

Timetraveller Fri 07-Dec-12 16:19:59

Thanks, Maggie. I don't know if she'll audition again as she'll be 13 this time next year - I imagine the standard for the main orchestra is even higher.

There was a comment about notes being 'lost', and I know she had a problem with no sound coming out of the oboe at the beginning. Her brother, who accompanied her, told me that some quiet notes didn't come out, which had never happened before.

The other negative comment was about her fingers 'getting into a tangle' in the Albinoni. I thought the piece was too difficult to learn in the time available, but her teacher disagreed. I'm a violinist, but know nothing about the oboe. I now think she should probably have played something simpler.

Anyway, it's no good thinking 'what if'..

Her sight reading was 'a good attempt' and 'mostly well read'

Well done for your dd getting in, she must be very good.

ImNotaCelebrity Fri 07-Dec-12 21:30:45

Well done Maggie's DD.
And Sugar ... I've been told that being in one year and not another is fairly common - hope she's not too disheartened.
DS is on reserve list. Comments were really useful as they mentioned 2 things I nag him about continually (I teach him myself), and he did have the grace to look a bit sheepish when he read them! However, he took it in his usual positive way, was thrilled to be on the reserve list on his first attempt, and loved their 'bags of potential' comment! He's already said he'll try again next year. He is the eternal optimist!

stripycandycane Fri 07-Dec-12 22:40:18

DD is on the reserve list and invited to join as an associate member, is very pleased.

ImNotaCelebrity, is your DS an associate member too?

maggiethecat Sat 08-Dec-12 01:27:21

Time, let it breathe for a while and then perhaps you can feel out if she'd like to try again. Even if the standard for the main O is higher, you never know where your dd will be relative to others this time next year.

Ultimately though, she will have to want it.

Dd's teachers (different ones for her first and second attempts) have never been the ones to suggest that dd audition. I suppose I'm a pushy mum but I figured that if she's always been told that she has good ability and I know she likes to perform, then she would have a decent shot at it.

Well done to all your dc - I think it must take a lot of nerve to stand up there and do what they do.

ImNotaCelebrity Sat 08-Dec-12 08:44:03

Stripy - no. What's an associate member?

rachel234 Sat 08-Dec-12 14:02:36

My dd is on the reserve list and has been offered associate membership to our regional orchestra. This is our first experience of auditioning and the nco. Are the regional orchestras fun/useful/worth joining?

Colleger Sat 08-Dec-12 17:14:35

DS got into the U13's but we too were worried that he may not be successful for two reasons which I hope will give sugaraddict some comfort/insight.

Often at the age 12 stage prodigious pianists tend to start on a second study so they can get involved in orchestras. Being beyond diploma standard and having very strong fingers, it is easy for them to get to grade 8+ on an instrument in under a year. I've seen it time and time again. It is no reflection on your child's ability and the only thing I can say is that these second study instruments tend to be given up within a few years so your daughter will probably be offered places on other courses such as NYO in the future.

The number of applications this year has also been staggeringly high.

sugaraddict Sat 08-Dec-12 19:17:54

Colleger, that's really interesting about the pianists. I'm beginning to realise that there could be a thousand reasons why she didn't get in this time. The only problem is that the way she seems to see it is that she was good enough for 2 years and isn't anymore . But doing plenty of talking about it.

Had a very difficult practice yesterday with lots of tears and 'that's not good enough' but got down to it again today and even managed to have some fun! I think we've both lost sight of the fact that she enjoys playing recently. I'm feeling fairly optimistic that she'll come out of this stronger.

stripycandycane Sat 08-Dec-12 22:35:26


Some of the children who just miss out on a place are invited to join one the NCO regional orchestras as Associate members of the NCO. They belong for the year and attend rehersals with a concert towards the end of the year.
Sounds like a great experience and hopefully really enjoyable.

ImNotaCelebrity Sun 09-Dec-12 20:51:58

Have to admit that I feel like blowing kisses to whoever wrote the report! For the first time ever, DS is making determined effort to bend his right thumb and have his left hand thumb in correct position. I cannot tell you how much I have tried to get him to sort these two things out. One rejection and he's decided it's important LOL.
The final comment was: 'Do everything mummy tells you and you will go far.' I couldn't have written it better myself!!! grin

maggiethecat Sun 09-Dec-12 21:06:24

Lots of kisses being blown on this end too. The amount of times teacher and I have reminded dd about her bow drifting over the fingerboard.

Can I ask about left thumb - dd has always hooked her left thumb. Never been an issue with previous teacher but current teacher has told her that it must be soft with the pad of the thumb sort of lying under the violin neck. I suppose hand is more relaxed and it probably helps shifting.

Dd has been trying but she says when she does she goes horribly out of tune.

ImNotaCelebrity Sun 09-Dec-12 22:44:57

It can sit just above the neck, but it still needs to be soft, not gripping - this is more important than the actual position. Hooking it suggests gripping.
Like anything, when you've developed a habit, it's really difficult to change it. She probably will be a bit out of tune to start with while her hand adjusts, but if she keeps at it, it shouldn't take too long at all before it starts to feel 'normal'.
Does she use vibrato yet? A good vibrato is almost impossible with a gripping left hand.
It's worth studying a few youtube clips of really good violinists, so she can see what she might be aiming for.

maggiethecat Mon 10-Dec-12 00:04:14

I know about breaking habits. The funny thing is that she does have a very good vibrato - her teacher often comments on it. She uses it a lot, even practising her scales with vibrato!

Will keep at it to see if she can relax that grip.

hardboiled Mon 10-Dec-12 12:17:17

Hi, could anyone tell me, is the NCO Under 12 just attending the residential summer course or there is also a regular commitment during the year with rehearsals, etc? The website seems to talk about the residential course only... Thanks.

maggiethecat Mon 10-Dec-12 14:27:16

think it's optional to attend the regionals in which the various age groups come together to rehearse for a big end of year concert. this is all separate and unconnected with the residential course I believe.

it's a big commitment especially if you'll be traveling for hours to attend (most of them are on a Sunday until 4.30).

basildonbond Tue 11-Dec-12 19:59:40

my niece (12) and nephew (10) have both got in this year (much to the relief of my sister as sibling rivalry averted ...) - my niece is doing two residential courses, her younger brother just one and they're both going to monthly regional rehearsals

hardboiled Wed 12-Dec-12 17:49:57

Thank you both for the info!

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