Join the New Zealand Secondary Students' Choir
The New Zealand Secondary Students' Choir operates on a two year cycle. The 2021-2022 choir is now in rehearsal, following nationwide auditions in October 2019.
Our next auditions will be held in late 2022 for the 2023-2024 NZSSC. Follow our Facebook page or sign up for our e-newsletter to hear about auditions when we announce them.
Eligability: Any singer who will be a full time student at a New Zealand secondary school in their first year of the two year cycle can audition.
Commitment: You must be able to commit to NZSSC membership for the FULL two year cycle. The choir gathers every school holiday for up to one week. Members can request leave for no more than one rehearsal course, and only in the first six months of the cycle.
IMPORTANT INFO FOR SINGERS AND WHĀNAU
- ONLINE AUDITIONS: If you are concerned about safety and travel to audition in person, we have a system ready to go that will allow you to audition online.
- PLANNING for PLAN A and B: We have two plans for the 2021-2022 cycle, Plan A involves national and international touring, as well as full rehearsal and normal activity. If travel or gathering restrictions come into effect, Plan B will still ensure a full engagement programme, with a combination of online, regional and sectional rehearsals, and different performance opportunities.
- NO COSTS FOR NO INTERNATIONAL TOUR: There will be no costs for singers or whānau for international touring that does not go ahead as planned.
"Don't think you can't do it because you can. If you love singing, that's all that matters,"
"We take singing seriously but we have fun at the same time and everyone's there for the same reason: because we love music." NZSSC member Lemau Sio Lolesio 2009-2012.
Read a Stuff article on Lemau's experience of NZSSC and watch the video above explaining how auditions work.
Get in touch with our NZSSC Manager Anna Bowron if you have any further questions about joining NZSSC.
Preparing for an Audition
To see what you will be tested on, read our Audition Information 2021-22
Watch the below videos, recorded at workshops a couple of years ago, for insights into the audition process.
There is no fee to take part in the auditions.
Once selected to join the choir, membership fees for the full two year cycle are approximately $7,000, depending on the length and destination of the international tour. Financial support may be available, see below. These fees cover:
- Costs of attending all NZ-based rehearsal courses, which run for up to one week of every school holidays : tuition, travel to the rehearsal city by plane or bus, and accommodation (usually billeting) with breakfast and dinner are all included. Local choir member families are expected to billet members from out of town.
- Costs associated with the international tour. Approxmiately $5,000 of total membership fees covers the international tour. If this tour does not go ahead, this cost is not charged to members. Flights, accommodation, meals and festival fees are all included. Personal spending and any passport/visa/immunization requirements are additional costs.
Student financial support
A Student Support Fund was recently established for those members who may require financial assistance with membership fees. An application form is here.
We have also assembled a list of fundraising suggestions, including local grant opportunities, so students can contribute towards the cost of their membership.
Why audition for NZSSC?
Hear it from our past members:
"Being a part of NZSSC kindled my passion for music like nothing else has. It's given me a vision of the level of quality I should aspire for in my future endeavours, and has been an irreplaceable experience for me to grow as a musician and as a person."
"This whole experience opened my daughter's eyes to the serious music world and set her up for a lifetime of confidently enjoying choral singing - she LOVED it. She learned how full-time musicians operate and particularly appreciated singing with other like-minded, focussed , hard-working young people."
"I have noticed a huge development in my voice and music knowledge over the last two years. I found that singing with people better or at a similar level as you is incredibly beneficial for this and also broadens your mindset in terms of performance, how to practice and rehearse etc."
"It has helped me to grow exponentially as a musician, especially aurally, where it has helped me to develop a finer ear for the choral sound, and in terms of reading and story telling, where I am able to connect better with a text (or lack of) in pieces that I sing."
"Truly unforgettable. I had never seen so much musical passion and talent in one place until joining NZSSC."
"I found the tour itself to be an incredibly enriching experience, I loved being able to bond with my fellow choir members and embrace a drastically new and different culture together whilst being able to share and represent New Zealand and its cultures in our music and presence."
"My personal experience was life changing. I got to travel around the world with my best friends. I got to see and learn about a different culture."