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Applications 2017 are now open!

Nationals-are-you-goingEstablished in 1964, we are South Africa’s oldest youth orchestra, and the leading orchestra in the youth orchestral movement. Our National Youth Orchestra members are the national team that represent an incredible youth orchestra movement that stretches from the Western Cape to Limpopo and everything in between. Alumni from our courses have gone on to play for internationally renowned orchestras, and their achievements bare testament to the ability of South African musicians to be exceptional and true ambassadors for our country.

As a participant, you will be part of the Nationals community and benefit from a range of programmes associated with our courses including opportunities for international music exchange, instrument repair courses, musician mentorship, arts administration internships and composition and conducting workshops. With a rich mix of South African participants, and a faculty made up of renowned local and international music professionals, the National Youth Orchestra Foundation offers diversity that is worthy of celebration. The orchestra course experience is for young people interested in music, from grade 7 level to those just starting their professional careers.

After you apply we will confirm receipt via email and/or SMS within the week. Do not hesitate to contact us should you need further information. (Where applicants are unable to apply online they should contact us to do them telephonically on 083 272 2117.)

We are proud of the orchestra course participants, each of whom contributes to the vitality of the National Youth Orchestra. We look forward to receiving your application and hope to welcome you to our 2017 courses.

APPLICATION

In order to complete this application online you will need a working email address and your South African identity number, or, if you are an international applicant, your passport number. This year we have limited seats for candidates from Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe.

You need to
1. Play an orchestral instrument
2. Be at at least Grade 7 level (Unisa, ABRSM, Trinity)
3. Be 25 years old or younger in 2017

AUDITION VENUES

In February and March live recorded auditions will be held in
Bloemfontein: 13 March 2017
Cape Town: 1 and 2 March 2017
Durban: 4 March 2017
Johannesburg: 24 February and 10 March 2017
Port Elizabeth: 6 and 7 March 2017
Potchefstroom: 14 March 2017
Pretoria: 27 February and 11 March 2017
Stellenbosch: 2 March 2017

REQUIREMENTS

Application Fee: A non-refundable fee of R50 is charged to each applicant to cover administration and processing costs. Only one application fee is required, regardless of how many programs you wish to apply for or how many instruments you apply on.

Please note: NO late applications or auditions will be accepted.

Candidates should prepare a solo piece and a study of their choice to demonstrate their standard and fluency on their instrument. Your programme (that means both study AND piece together) should not exceed 5 minutes in length and you may make any required cuts to fit within the time limit. NB: Accompanists are not allowed.

AUDITION GUIDELINES/FAQs:

http://www.sanyo.org.za/courses/audition-faqs/

Travel: You are expected to get yourself to course. Auditions start on the first day of each course (be there before 12:00 please) and the course ends with our final concert in the evening on the last day of each course (most out-of-towners therefore leave on the morning of the day after the last day of course.)

National Youth Orchestra Course fee: R2300. This fee includes accommodation, meals and tuition. Proof of payment is to be received by our offices a month before each course. Please use your name/surname as the reference. If you are unable to afford the course fee, there are various financial assistance options available, including a payment plan and bursary options. Please contact us on team@sanyo.org.za if you require more information, and indicate that you require financial assistance in the application form.

APPLICATIONS:  OPEN for 2017 and the application FORM is now available.

What does it SOUND like?

 

The National Youth Orchestra, the green and gold team of our most talented young musicians, is embarking on an adventure in cutting-edge South African performance in a new collaboration with Bombshelter Beast, a genre-busting music collective of some of SA’s most colourful and innovative musicians.

Think Black Cat White Cat meets Brenda Fassie – add an opera singer, a polish refugee, a Manchester born kwaito star and SA’s most cunning linguist, and you have half the picture. The other half is best experienced live! Be taken on a journey from baroque to boeremusiek, comedy to kwaito, and a lot in between – a new South African sound that’s best served hot! Bring comfortable shoes to dance in – your feet will thank you. Shows on 11, 12 and 14 December in Johannesburg.
www.sanyo.org.za/events

National Youth Orchestra concerts are made possible by the National Lotteries Commission, the Department of Arts and Culture, the SABC Foundation, the Academy of Sound Engineering and SAfm.

Thank you to Black Gosling for producing this awesome video!
Saxophone: Sisonke Xonti

Feedback from our Bassoon faculty

We asked our Bassoon experts for some feedback on our What It Takes: Bassoon course that took place in October. Read more about their experience at the course and working with the young and talented students.

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“The course was great! I was very scared in the beginning, but I enjoyed meeting new bassoonists from across the country and making new friends. I loved playing in the ensemble with everyone.”
This was participant Tiisetso Mvula’s (14, currently at the National School of the Arts) first What It Takes course.

Penny Fraser (Ives), principle bassoon for the Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra and teacher at the Johannesburg Youth Orchestra Company

1. What was your most fun moment? Listening to my baby bassoons keep up with the older players!

2. How / why did you choose to play bassoon? I was already playing flute and piano, was a little bored and also had hurt my knee in an ice skating accident making it difficult to stand for long periods to practice so went to school with the intention of learning cello but it was about the middle of the year and all the string instruments had been hired out already being so popular. The only instruments left were a bassoon and a tuba and so I chose the bassoon as it looked like an interesting instrument.

3. What is one of the most important things for a bassoonist to remember when playing in an orchestra? That you are only as good as your last performance and one has to keep working all their life to improve their standard no matter how talented you think you may be. Someone once asked what I thought the most important thing was playing in the orchestra – “tone quality, tuning or technique”? With the bassoon all of these qualities are to be worked on and important for playing in a wind section your whole entire life.

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Douglas Bull, co-principal bassoonist of the Deutsches Symphonie Orchester Berlin

1. What was your general idea for the What It Takes course? My general idea or approach was to elicit the students’ talent, to make them aware of their own potential and that of the bassoon. The course was a wonderful opportunity for all the students to learn as much as possible in the space of three days, to be surrounded by other bassoonists and to learn from one another. These courses are of immense value to students. They are flooded with information which they gladly soak up and immediately try to put into practice.

2. How was it working with the kids? Working with the kids was very special in that I felt I was contributing to something that was per definition already very special: kids in South Africa who are interested in classical music and who want to play bassoon as well as possible. They are motivated, eager to learn, clever and wonderfully open-minded.

3. Did you learn anything from this course? I learned that no matter how difficult the situation might be, there will always be extraordinary people (like those from SANYO) who will give their utmost best to support and encourage young musicians, giving them something wonderful which they will treasure for always.

4. What was your most fun moment? Those immediately after we had played a beautiful piece of chamber music and all the students would excitedly ask if we could play it from the top again.

5. What is the one thing that you would like every bassoonist to know/remember? You are only as good as your reed allows you to be.

6. Any (other) advice you can give the young bassoonists? My advice – listen to as many recordings as you can get hold of and keep in contact with other bassoonists especially professional players in order to learn as much as possible from all of them.

More about the WHAT IT TAKES courses:

Every What It Takes course is designed specifically to cater to the needs of the selected participants. The course covers many aspects of professional musicianship including audition preparation, marketing of yourself as a musician, posture/injury prevention, performing with an orchestra, music history related to your instrument and individual master classes from top professionals. It gives insight into solo, chamber and orchestral playing as well as teaching and other career options.

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Nationals Violists visit Cremona

Four violists from Cape Town, all National Youth Orchestra members, have recently visited Cremona, Italy for the 43rd International Viola Congress (4 to 8 October 2016). Loved by string players, Cremona witnessed the development of violin making resulting in modern stringed instruments. The contemporary Cremonese luthiers and the flourishing violin makers’ school and the Violin Museum are internationally recognized. It was a unique event of the highest level with a focus on musicians of the younger generation, contributing to the richness, vibrancy and diversity of contemporary musical life, leaving a lasting impression on participants and audiences from around the world. IVC presented the finest international musicians in collaboration with young violists, viola teachers and chamber ensembles performing standard, new and recently rediscovered viola repertoire in outstanding artistic events, and warmly invited viola students, teachers, orchestra members, chamber musicians, soloists and amateurs to contribute to the success of the Congress with their proposals and participation.

Dr Louise Lansdown (Head of Strings at the Birmingham Conservatoire) presented a National Youth Orchestra What It Takes: Viola course earlier this year and inspired the young violists to form the UCT String Quartet and raise funds to attend the Viola Congress. Lucy Strauss, Stéphanie Lawrenson, Erin Torres and Osamu Nakada presented various National Youth Orchestra Chamber Music for Change concerts in Cape Town to fund their trip to Italy. These international links make incredible opportunities like this possible.

UCT Viola Quartet

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Lucy Strauss (21) shares her experience:

We met violists from Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Birmingham UK, USA, Japan, France, Australia, Brazil, Argentina and Poland. We also enjoyed visiting some of the over 150 luthiers in Cremona! We were lucky enough to watch German violist Tabea Zimmermann playing a recital.

The experience was incredible. The congress was very welcoming and we were kept very busy! It was impossible to see every masterclass, recital and lecture. Since I am both a violist and a composer, I appreciated that there was a lot of new music being played in addition to the standard viola repertoire. The town of Cremona was the perfect setting for the congress; we did not feel out of place walking through the cobblestone streets with our violas on our backs; most people there walk around attached to either a violin or some form of fashionable pedigree dog. We definitely used all the music stalls (and admittedly the gelato shops) to our limits; I returned to South Africa with €1.34 in my travel wallet…

Osamu Nakada (20) writes about what he learned:

The trip and course to Italy was really quite wonderful. We were in Italy for ten days, six days of which took place in the 43rd International Viola Congress course. There were so many lectures, recitals, and lecture-recitals from world-renowned violists and composers. There were several groups from various Viola societies all over Europe; and it was thoroughly entertaining to observe how violists all over the world shared a similar laid-back attitude in music – in comparison to overly competitive violinists, that is.
I suppose there was a slight ambassadorial element to the congress which resulted in a mutually inquisitive attitude when interacting with the multi-national viola societies. I enjoyed the recitals from those societies that incorporated their countries’ national music, like the Portuguese Viola society who collaborated with Portuguese guitarists which was super cool.
Additionally, there was this “Viola Cafe” event which was basically a huge viola networking fest where a lowly undergrad student like me could sit and chat amicably with professors and professionals alike and subsequently learn of their struggles as musicians – which was humbling.
Overall, I learned about the collective global approach to the viola due to the high concentration of violists from all over the world. Therefore there was a more specialized insight for various viola works. This doesn’t usually occur in general which was refreshing. Furthermore, being in Cremona exposed us to so many local luthiers and to their amazing instruments. Thus trying out various violas was another insight to exploring different “viola sounds”. This was useful to further the spectrum of individual viola playing. The course was therefore a joy especially having taken place in Cremona – the birthplace of the string instrument.

December Performances in Johannesburg

 

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To the Roots hosts South Africa’s best loved music and artists, performing together in aid of the National Youth Orchestra’s Bursary Fund at the magnificent Walter Sisulu Botanical Garden on 11 December. Shortstraw, Bombshelter Beast, Goliath and Goliath and the National Youth Orchestra are all in the line-up. It’s the perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon to kick off the December holidays in style!

A live broadcast from the SABC M1 Studio on SAfm is on Monday 12 December, and our final concert is at the Linder Auditorium on 14 December. Thank you to our venue partners, the SABC Foundation and the Music Department at the Wits School of Arts.

The National Youth Orchestra, the green and gold team of our most talented young musicians, is embarking on an adventure in cutting-edge South African performance in a new collaboration with Bombshelter Beast, a genre-busting music collective of some of SA’s most colourful and innovative musicians. Think Black Cat White Cat meets Brenda Fassie – add an opera singer, a polish refugee, a Manchester born kwaito star and SA’s most cunning linguist, and you have half the picture. The other half is best experienced live! Be taken on a journey from baroque to boeremusiek, comedy to kwaito, and a lot in between – a new South African sound that’s best served hot! Bring comfortable shoes to dance in – your feet will thank you.

shortstraw2Multi award-winning Jozi indie rock band Shortstraw, who have just released their single T-shirt, are thrilled to play at To the Roots and contribute their talent in aid of the National Youth Orchestra’s Bursary Fund. As bassist, Russell Grant, shared: “We’re always excited to support an organisation or initiative that brings more musicians into the world, and something that gives kids an amazing ability in their lives. Whether it becomes a career or just a passion, you always have this ability and music in your life and that’s awesome.”

National Youth Orchestra concerts are made possible by the National Lotteries Commission, the Department of Arts and Culture, the SABC Foundation, the Academy of Sound Engineering and the SAMRO Foundation cialis canada generic. Gates open at 12:00 on Sunday 11 December, and tickets are available now on www.plankton.mobi as well as at Computicket. For more information please visit www.sanyo.org.za.

 

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Show details:

11 December 2016, 14:00 – Walter Sisulu Botanical Garden, Roodepoort

Shortstraw, Bombshelter Beast, Goliath and Goliath and the National Youth Orchestra all performing in aid of the National Youth Orchestra’s Bursary Fund. A wonderful Sunday afternoon spent in the magnificent botanical garden – book ahead to save, tickets are more expensive at the gate. Children under 12 get in for free.
Tickets R150 per person online at Plankton.mobi or Computicket or R170 at the gate.

12 December 2016, 19:00 – SABC M1 Studio, Auckland Park, Johannesburg

Tickets available at Computicket
Be part of the select audience our live broadcast on SAfm at the SABC M1 Studio with Bombshelter Beast and the National Youth Orchestra. The String Orchestra will be lead by Pavel Fischer (Czech Republic), and the Wind Orchestra by Bjørn Breistein (Norway). The programme includes everything from Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 to our very own version of Weekend Special, arranged by Marcus Wyatt.

14 December 2016, 20:00 – Linder Auditorium, Parktown

Tickets available at Computicket

Our final concert of this special programme in the magnificent Linder Auditorium, kindly sponsored by the Music Department at the Wits School of Arts. Let’s fill the Linder and dance, dance, dance!