Join ULSO

How to Join

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Entry to ULSO is by audition. We are currently accepting applications for the 2019/20 season and have some exciting repertoire lined up, including:

Auditions will be taking place on 29th Sep, 5-6th Oct and 12-13th Oct at King’s College London, Strand Campus. Read on for further information and don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. When you're ready, sign up using the link below!

The deadline for applications is 4th October at 4pm. However, do not hesitate to contact us if you have missed the deadline and would still like to audition, as we always try to accommodate all applicants!

ULSO rehearsals take place on Tuesday evenings between 18:30 and 21:30 at St Stephen's Church, Gloucester Road, London, SW7 4RL. There may also be additional rehearsals on Thursday evenings and at weekends in the lead-up to concerts. Availability forms will be sent out before each project and these dates will be confirmed in advance.

ULSO is open to current and graduate students from any college or university in London. Non-students can also join.

Every member of the orchestra is auditioned at the start of the academic year (later Sep - early Oct). Both new and returning members are required to audition. Entry is competitive. To be considered, we specify a minimum standard of ABRSM Grade 8 or equivalent.

You will be required to play:

  • a 5 minute prepared piece*
  • a selection of prepared orchestral excerpts

The audition will last no longer than 15 minutes and is unaccompanied. A warm-up room will be available 15 minutes before your audition. Please note that we are unable to provide an accompanist and nor do we expect you to bring one.

Excerpts will be sent to you by email approximately two weeks before the start of auditions.

We are now receiving applications for the 2019/20 season.

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Attendance is required for all rehearsals. In the event of an unavoidable absence, such as conservatoire projects, deps are required from wind, brass, percussion and principal desks of strings. You must also notify the Orchestral Manager via orchestral.manager@ulso.co.uk. By joining ULSO, members agree to adhere to our depping policy.

The subscription fee for the 2019/20 season is £45 per member and should be paid via Student Central.

ULSO receives a partial subsidy from Student Central but is very much reliant on membership fees help to cover the cost the running the orchestra, which includes music hire, venue hire, percussion hire, soloist and conductor fees. Upon paying your membership fee, your position in the orchestra is guaranteed for the year.

If you are a string player and are interested in a principal seat, you will be asked to play some additional extracts in your audition. These extracts will be provided below the normal extracts when the audition materials are sent to you.

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If you have missed the audition period but would like to play with us, it may be possible for you to join later in the season. Entry will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Please contact the Orchestral Manager via orchestral.manager@ulso.co.uk

Do prepare your extracts thoroughly - not just your piece - as they are arguably the most important part of your audition. The panel are looking for:

  • Rhythm
  • Intonation
  • Quality of sound
  • Style
  • Musicality

It is highly recommended that you listen to recordings of the extracts you are preparing.

Still have questions?