Here are a collection of frequently asked questions by both students and parents/guardians. If you can’t find the answer you are looking for please do email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will aim to respond within 48 hours.
What is the cost to audition?
A payment of a £30 is required to audition for NYGE.
What will happen in my audition?
Your audition will consist of two parts; a solo audition and an ensemble audition. First you will be asked to prepare a Quick Study to evaluate your sight reading skills. Then you will be taken through to meet the audition panel where you will play your solo piece and perform the Quick Study you just prepared. Following your panel audition you will be asked to play as part of an ensemble with other musicians also auditioning for a place at NYGE. When you have completed the three sections you may go home.
How long will it be before I hear the results of my audition?
It takes between 4 to 6 weeks to find out if you have been offered a place. This takes a long time because detailed individual feedback is given to each musician so that they can understand the result.
How can I prepare for my audition?
Take time practising your piece you have selected to play. Dedicate some of your practise time to sight-reading, there are many tools online with tips on how to improve your sight-reading. Think about the reasons you want to join NYGE so you can tell the panel.
How do you select people for NYGE?
We are looking for a number of different things when we select members to join the ensemble: Technique, musicality, ensemble skills, be a team player, passion for your instrument and your general aptitude for the guitar.
What grade do I have to be to audition?
We accept applications from anyone (aged 12 and older) who has reached grade 5 equivalent level or above. The level of applicant varies from year to year, it will depend on the performance of other applicants on the day to decide the allocation of places.
What do the fees cover?
Your membership fee covers all your NYGE rehearsals between September and March and both residential courses (including accommodation and food) at Easter and in the summer.
The reason that the fees are such good value is that as NYGE is run by the charity Guitar Circus it can subsidise each student by up to 25% from the donations, sponsorship and funding it receives.
How do I pay for my child to audition?
Payments can be made to GUITAR CIRCUS by BACS. We must have received your payment by the relevant audition closing date to secure an audition slot. Our payments details are as follows:
PAYMENT REFERENCE: (NYGEAUD followed by applicants Full Name)
Account name: GUITAR CIRCUS
Account No: 00015130
Sort code: 40-52-40
Can I change my audition date if it is inconvenient?
We only hold one day of auditions at each location: London, Birmingham and Glasgow. We would ask that you come at your allotted time to have the best chance of being offered a place. You can apply to any location to be considered for any one of our ensembles.
What characteristics are you looking for in an ensemble member?
Music is very much a passion for any young guitarist. We are looking for enthusiasm, commitment and good organisation skills. Ensemble work requires dedicated practice outside of your normal rehearsal schedule. Your child will be expected to prepare and attend each rehearsal. Missing one session (6 hours) can be difficult to catch up on later.
What is the commitment I am making every year?
NYGE rehearsals run monthly from September through until March.
At Easter there is a short stay residential where the NYGE Orchestra and NYGE Camerata Orchestra come together and perform the pieces they have learnt over the past 6 months and bring together new pieces to perform at the Easter concert that have been prepared at home.
In the summer there is a 3 night residential offering intensive training in some new pieces, exciting workshops and opportunities to perform. Some ensembles may get the chance to tour both in the UK and abroad. There are also sessions that can help students prepare for upcoming conservatoire auditions or even to learn a new skill, like conducting.
NYGE members are expected to come to all rehearsals and residentials and have prepared in advance selected pieces.
What if my child has exams?
We understand the commitment required during periods of revision for GCSE’s or A Levels. At the Easter residential there will be sessions that members can choose to study rather than participate in scheduled fun activities. However, due to safeguarding this may have to be in a supervised space on-site.
Write to us
By email: Info@guitarcircus.org.uk
By Post: Guitar Circus, 12 Parchment street, Winchester, SO23 8AZ