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Does anyone have experience of Young NSSO or Pro Corda?

(9 Posts)
chicafuego Sun 13-Dec-15 22:21:52

Hello. I hope this is the correct thread for my question.
My DS was, unfortunately, unsuccessful in his audition for the NCO but is still keen to find a residential course. He is nearly 11, plays the violin (and piano) and is currently playing at about Grade 5 standard. I think the NCO standard was too high for him, but he would love to do a residential course.
I wondered if anyone had experience of either the Young NSSO or Pro Corda. I have heard that a child is less likely to be turned down for Pro Corda. Does anyone know whether it is also extremely difficult to get into the Young NCCO? If anyone has done both, is there one course that was preferred?
thanks

DancingDuck Sun 13-Dec-15 23:17:06

I don't know of them but wonder why the pressure to do something at national level when he is still at Grade 5? His confidence might be much better developed if he was a shining light of a local residential course. He may get the chance to be first violin or given more interesting pieces to play. To be one of the least experienced people in an intense atmosphere of nationally selected players can be quite demoralising, whereas to be one of the better players locally can really boost their confidence. (Works for DS.)

chicafuego Mon 14-Dec-15 07:44:29

There is no pressure, he really wants to do it and has for a while ( I had been putting it off). He is the leader of the local Junior Youth Orchestra at the moment and looking forward to a trip to the Isle of Wight with them.
I understand about being the least experienced in a group but from what I see of Pro Corda it is also a chance to develop in small groups. I think he wants to have a week of violin playing to improve. He does the local violin courses at Christmas and summer, which last a few days but aren't residential and he loves it.

nosuchwordascant Mon 14-Dec-15 11:03:55

Have you though about Music makers depends where you are based but if you look at there website they offer residential music courses and they are amazing ......

chicafuego Mon 14-Dec-15 11:45:31

Thanks for the information about Music Makers. I did not know about that course. They do look interesting. Unfortunately we are not going to be here now for the dates of their residential course, as it is in the middle of the summer holidays.
The non residential courses are too far away to make the journey every day.

Jeelba Mon 14-Dec-15 12:24:26

Look at the National Preparatory schools Orchestras? Not just for children at prep schools...

chicafuego Mon 14-Dec-15 12:51:29

The National Preparatory Schools Orchestras sounds just what I was looking for. Unfortunately the course is on his last week of school and at it is his last year at Primary School, I don't think he or I would want him to miss the last week. Any other year would be good, but he will want to say goodbye to his friends before they move to various schools.

Musicmom1 Mon 14-Dec-15 22:57:32

Chica - I answered on the NCO thread, but just to say NSSO was/is fantastic. DD will be in it For her third year next year. It is completely different system of entry to NCO - not least because you keep your place each following year unless it is massively oversubscribed. Auditions were very informal/teaching style and booked to suit you (we went to someone's house nearby) and we got emailed a place a few days later. For Young NSSO, it did not seem in anyway as competitive as NCO - the min of grade 5 playing level applies at all ages so your son would be fine. There will be more advanced children of course, but there are much fewer younger advanced ones on it. All that is not to say that he won't learn a lot - DD really did, and the quality of the end of course concert was outstanding reflecting the wide age/playing range.

Is ds Suzuki taught? If so, there are some really good summer courses (we did Cellofest a few times which was amazing, but there are equivalent for other instruments)

chicafuego Tue 15-Dec-15 08:57:58

Musicmom, thanks for your answer. I think he will apply for Young NSSO and Pro Corda and see how it goes. He says he wants to improve his playing and this would be a good way to improve.

He is not Suzuki taught, just taught by the local music service that go into his school. For the first two years he was in a group lesson and was moved into an individual class when the teacher realised he was progressing at a much quicker pace. In hindsight I would have put him in individual lessons from the start, but I had no idea he would love music and stick to the violin, as neither DH or myself know a lot about music. I am not sure if that hinders him, as I can only help his practice to a certain point, by encouraging him, but I can't give too much practical advice.

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