Professional Experience Scheme 24/25: Hallé

Applications are now open for the Hallé Professional Experience Scheme for Wind and Brass students.

Open to: third and fourth year undergraduates and all postgraduates enrolled at the RNCM in 24/25 who are not on the Hallé’s extras list and who have not completed the Scheme before.

Deadline for application: 1pm, Thursday 27 June 2024
Full audition requirements: Moodle
Application form: Moodle
Audition & Workshop Dates:

Woodwind

Monday 23rd September
1400 – Bassoon Workshop

1800 – Clarinet Workshop

Monday 30th September</strong
1400 – Oboe Workshop

1800 – Clarinet/Bassoon Auditions

Monday 14th October
1800 – Flute Workshop

Monday 21st October
1830 – Flute/Oboe Auditions

Monday 11th November
1830 – Woodwind Workshop

 

Brass

Monday 30th September
1400 – Trumpet/Horn Auditions

1400 – Trombone/Tuba Auditions *tbc*

Monday 7th October
1400 – Trumpet Workshop

1400 – Trombone/Tuba Workshop *tbc*

1800 – Horn Workshop

Monday 11th November
1400 – Brass Workshop

Please note the proximity of the Halle Second Round workshops to the Opera North Full Workshops (Monday 11 November & Tuesday 12 November). We will endeavour to inform all candidates of the repertoire information for the workshops as early as possible at the start of the term.

 

The Scheme

Our Professional Experience Scheme with the Hallé is designed to introduce students to professional orchestral life, by giving them an opportunity to workshop, rehearse and perform with the Hallé during the forthcoming season.

Brass

Auditions

A stringent audition procedure at the start of the academic year will select students to participate in the scheme over a season. Auditions will follow a similar process to that which the Hallé uses when appointing permanent positions within the orchestra.

Students who audition will be expected to perform the following:

  1. A set piece (for most instruments, the first movement of a classical concerto or equivalent sonata – please check the audition requirements document for specific information).
  2. Contrasting extracts from the standard repertoire available on Moodle.
  3. Sight-reading from the standard repertoire.

The audition panel comprises Hallé Section Principals and the choice of participating students is at their discretion. No accompanist will be provided for the audition and please do not bring your own.

Preliminary workshops

After the audition a team of Hallé musicians will run two, three-hour workshops in the Autumn Term. These will focus on the art of orchestral playing, including intonation, ensemble playing and practice within the overall team. The first will be a sectional session working from an Extract Booklet selected by the Hallé. This booklet can be found on Moodle and contains enough pieces to provide a basic grounding for playing in a brass section.

The second will be a tutti brass session alongside Hallé players. Repertoire will be chosen by the Hallé and this will usually be two contrasting pieces and will include the full brass section. This session will be conducted by an RNCM Conducting student. Whilst the Conductor will keep the musical flow, the Hallé players will decide the process, allowing time to demonstrate passages, play through sections.

From these workshops, successful students will be selected for the final stages of the Scheme.

 

Woodwind

Primary / Doubling Instruments

Woodwind students can apply to the Hallé PES either solely on their primary instrument, or as a doubling player (i.e. also playing the auxiliary instruments of piccolo, cor anglais, bass clarinet or contrabassoon). Indication of this choice must be made by the student during the application process.

For those students applying as a doubling woodwind player, they must prepare relevant audition excerpts on both instruments. If successful beyond audition, they will then be expected to prepare doubling / auxiliary parts at workshop. For any doubling applicant successful on to the last stages of the Scheme, the Hallé will (at their discretion) provide appropriate opportunities on any combination of auxiliary only, or doubling parts within the rehearsal / concert stages.

Workshop 1

This session will involve all woodwind applicants. Each instrumental section will run a separate workshop which will involve at least the Principal and the auxiliary player (eg. Piccolo, Cor Anglais etc.) For each section the workshop will be based on an Extract Booklet selected by the Hallé which can be found on Moodle. This booklet contains enough pieces to provide a basic grounding for playing in a wind section. The session will also outline what will be expected at the audition.

Auditions

A stringent audition procedure after the first workshop will select the students to participate in the Scheme over a season. Auditions will follow a similar process to that which the Hallé uses when appointing permanent positions within the orchestra.

Students who are selected for audition will be expected to perform the following:

  1. A set piece (for most instruments, the first movement of a classical concerto or equivalent sonata –please check the audition requirements document for specific information).
  2. Contrasting extracts from the standard repertoire (as provided in the Extracts booklet).
  3. Sight-reading from the standard repertoire.

The audition panel comprises Hallé Section Principals and the choice of participating students is at their discretion. All auditions are unaccompanied.

Workshop 2

The second workshop will be conducted by an RNCM Conducting student with a group of eight Hallé musicians, including auxiliary instruments, playing alongside the students. Whilst the Conductor will keep the musical flow, the Hallé players will decide the process, allowing time to demonstrate passages, play through sections.

Repertoire will be chosen by the Hallé and this will usually be two contrasting pieces and will include the full wind section (e.g. 12 players, including auxiliary parts). The session will focus on the art of orchestral playing, including intonation, ensemble playing and practicing within the overall team.

Following this workshop, successful students will be selected for the final stages of the Scheme.

 

All instruments

Final Stages

After the second workshop, the successful students will then be offered up to two levels of Hallé placement experience:

Stage 1: Playing in a rehearsal or rehearsals

Stage 2: Performing one item in a Hallé concert at The Bridgewater Hall

Although all successful students will be involved in STAGE 1, it is anticipated that a much smaller number will be offered STAGE 2, the opportunity of playing an item in a concert, normally the overture or similar. The ultimate aim for each student is to perform well enough to be added to the Hallé’s list of extra players.

Mentoring

During the rehearsal process each successful student will be allocated a Hallé mentor who will have the following important roles within the scheme:

  • To guide, both personally and professionally, the student through this early experience of professional orchestral life.
  • To liaise closely with the Section Principal on the student’s performance and progress.

Key information relating to all RNCM Professional Experience Schemes is outlines within the document. If you require additional support or guidance, please email Abigail Flood or call 0161 907 5275 /M 07976 556983

 

Professional experience schemes: key information

Student’s responsibilities

What the Hallé musicians expect from a student

  • Individual parts to be fully prepared to a professional level in advance of the workshop sessions, i.e. technical fluency.
  • A thorough knowledge of the works, i.e. having listened to at least one or two recordings with a score.
  • An open-minded attitude to discussing issues that arise, particularly in the workshop sessions.
  • A good knowledge of the work being observed in the Hallé rehearsal.

What the Hallé Education team expects from a student

  • Prompt response to any communication with regard to the scheme.
  • All successful students are expected to be available for the periods of work agreed and a student’s professional experience scheme can be terminated at any point.

Auditions

Auditions are a key part of Professional Experience Schemes and it is considered unprofessional to cancel at short notice. As such, any applicant withdrawing at less than 72 hours’ notice prior to audition will be ineligible to apply to that orchestra again.

Accompanists

Orchestras within the Professional Experience Schemes vary in their provision of accompanists at audition. All Hallé auditions are unaccompanied.

Please Note

You can apply and audition for multiple RNCM Professional Experience Schemes and all applicants are guaranteed an audition.

You cannot re-apply for a Scheme if you have completed it in any previous years.

If you are on an orchestra’s extra list, you cannot apply to take part in their Professional Experience Scheme.

You will not receive any payment for involvement in RNCM Professional Experience Schemes.

Successful auditionees cannot undertake freelance work with the orchestra until all Professional Experience Scheme dates have been completed

Postgraduates Only

If you intend to use the Professional Experience Scheme for the Professional Placement module please keep copies of all Professional Experience Scheme applications (CV, covering letter and application pro forma) as you will be required to submit them at the end of the year as part of your Professional Placement portfolio.

You can choose to use the Professional Experience Scheme for the Professional Placement module (dependant on reaching the appropriate stage) but you do not have to choose the module in order to undertake the Professional Experience Scheme.

For questions about Professional Placement modules, please contact Andrea Vogler [email protected].