Camerata and Sinfonia Orchestras.

The aim of the NYSO Camerata and Sinfonia residencies is to help younger students at a critical stage of their musical development to ‘Make Connections’ between all the different musical experiences coming at them.

Realising that theory, aural and physical response to rhythm all come together at the point where performance begins, is an eye-opener for young players.

The National Youth String Orchestra is delighted to announce the creation of an exciting new orchestra to join the NYSO ‘family’.

NYSO Sinfonietta will welcome talented 7 – 9 year-old string players  to its first 3-day courses at Easter and summer 2023, providing a foundation for string ensemble playing with a focus on chamber music, general musicianship and the Kodaly and Dalcroze methods.

We acknowledge that many younger players do not do grades, but a solid basis in string playing will be an advantage and grades 2-5 or equivalent should be regarded purely as guidance for the levels of ability the Sinfonietta is looking for, rather than as strict requirements.


Spring: 9 – 14 April  – Stamford School, Oswald Elliott Hall, East Street, Stamford, PE9 1QF

Summer: 18 – 26 August – Stamford School, Oswald Elliott Hall, East Street, Stamford, PE9 1QF

Previous repertoire includes:

Vaughan Williams – Charterhouse Suite, 2021
Bartok – Romanian Folk Dances, 2021
Grainger – Molly on the Shore, 2021
Elgar – Serenade for Strings, 2019
Rautavaara – Divertimento in D k.136, 2019
Piazzola – Libertango, 2019
Beethoven String Quartet op95 1st mvt (arr. Mahler), 2019

An essential experience.

NYSO Camerata and Sinfonia residencies introduce ensemble skills and incorporate Kodaly musicianship and Dalcroze Eurhythmics sessions linked to the repertoire to develop the specific skills needed for ensemble playing.

NYSO new orchestra – Sinfonietta for 2023

Fees. (Easter & Summer courses)

Camerata and Sinfonia fees for 2022 – £2030 (includes £250 non-refundable place acceptance deposit)

Please note: In response to positive feedback we have increased the length of the Camerata and Sinfonia residencies by a further 2 days (14 days in total).

Audition Information & Requirements.

Camerata ages, 13 – 17 playing standard, grade 6 – 8 standard and above.

Sinfonia ages, 9 – 12 playing standard, grade 5 – 7 standard and above.

Sinfonietta ages, 7 – 9 with a grades standard of 2 – 5 (to be used as a guide)

Auditions are by video only. Applications are now open for 2023 orchestra membership.

How to apply

There will be 2 opportunities to audition for 2023 membership of NYSO orchestras.

  1. Please complete the application form on our website (at the bottom of this page) and submit by 20 June 2022 for video audition submission by 30 June 2022 or 20 October for video submissions by 30 October 2022.
  2. Upload your video audition to YouTube (public or unlisted) or Vimeo. Video links should be emailed to Do check your spam folders for any correspondence!
Audition requirements for Camerata and Sinfonia
  1. One piece of your own choice. Playing with an accompanist is at your discretion.
  2. 2 scales in different keys and their respective arpeggios, separate and slurred. Choice of 2 or 3 octaves at your (and your teacher’s) discretion. One double stop scale of your choice in either 6ths, 3rds or octaves (not required for basses).
  3. Three short orchestral excerpts. There will be links below which will become live on 20 June and 20 October.

Audition Excerpts Camerata

Audition Excerpts Sinfonia

Audition requirements for Sinfonietta:

We recognise that some promising musicians in this age group may have only been playing for a short time.  The audition process is designed to make sure that enough knowledge is in place for members to be able to access the course fully.   It is expected that members will be able to read music.

  1. One piece of your own choice.  You can play alone, with an accompanist, or in a duet with your teacher.
  2. One major scale with its arpeggio, plus a minor scale (natural, melodic or harmonic) with its arpeggio.  One octave is enough, but feel free to play two octaves if you know them.  Please play one of these with slurred bowing.
  3. Sing “Who Stole my chickens and my hens”, in the key of D major. Video example here
Video instructions
  • Please state your first and last name clearly before playing anything. Before each piece and orchestral excerpt please state the title and composer, and identify which scale you will be playing before each one.
  • Set up the camera so we can see the musician from at least the waist up, and position the music stand so we can see the musician’s instrument as well. For those auditioning on larger instruments, such as cello and double bass, please try to capture as much of the musician as possible in the picture.
  • Check that the sound quality of the recording is satisfactory and without distortion before uploading.
Audition Fee



NYSO’s bursary scheme exists for students from families who would find it difficult to meet the costs involved in attending NYSO residencies.

More Info

NYSO are delighted to be in partnership with the Junior Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Students of the Junior GSMD who missed the auditions may be considered for a place in NYSO, at the discretion of the Music Director and places being available, following a recommendation from their string teacher and audition.