Verbier Festival
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Apply to the Verbier Festival Orchestra

APPLICATIONS NOW OPEN

Applications to Verbier Festival Artist Training Programmes are submitted through the Acceptd on-line platform. Read how to submit an application under the tabs below.

Almost all Verbier Festival Orchestra musicians are selected from live auditions in Berlin, Cologne, Geneva, Madrid, Moscow, New York, Paris or Zurich, which take place from mid-January to early March 2018. Should a candidate be unable to perform a live audition, they may submit an application by video audition.

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Who Should Apply

Applicants to the Verbier Festival Orchestra must be aged 18 to 28 on 1 July 2018.

Musicians are invited to become members of the Orchestra for one edition of the Verbier Festival. They may be re-invited twice; these re-invitations are not guaranteed. To be re-invited, musicians must be aged 29 or younger on the last day of the festival (6 August 2018).

Successful candidates are required to sign an agreement with the Fondation du Verbier Festival, thereby committing to the entire Verbier Festival Orchestra summer session from 1 July to 6 August 2018, and accepting all rules of the Orchestra.

Deadlines

Live Audition Applications
17 December 2017

Video Audition Applications
21 January 2018

Important Information for Flute, Double Bass, Harp and Percussion

Flute
Due to a high number of applicants, flautists will be pre-screened by video audition before being invited to a live audition. The deadline to submit a video audition for pre-screening is 17 December 2017. Please note that the pre-screen video must be recorded in one take. Applicants will be notified if they have been selected for a live audition by 23 December 2017.

Double Bass
Video audition only

Harp
Video audition only

Percussion
LIve auditions will be held only in Berlin, Geneva, New York and Zurich.

Fees & Costs

Application Fee
$75 US

Live Audition Expenses
Applicants are responsible for their own expenses related to live auditions (travel, accommodation, etc.)

Costs for Successful Candidates
Each position in the Verbier Festival Orchestra is fully funded by the Verbier Festival, including travel to and from Verbier, lodging and meals.

Live Auditions

You will be notified of your live audition date and time by email no later than 23 December 2017. Should you already know that you are unavailable on a particular date, please inform Samuel Goldscheider, Orchestras Manager. While the Orchestras team does its best to accommodate scheduling requests, it cannot guarantee that all requests can be met.

Please note:  Dates and venues are subject to change; do not book your travel or accommodation before receiving confirmation of your audition.

Berlin
1, 2 & 3 February 2018

Cologne
9, 10 & 11 February

Geneva
21 January (evening): Percussion
22 & 23 January

Madrid
11 January

Moscow
13 & 14 January

New York
27 February – 4 March

Paris
14, 15 & 16 February

Zurich
25, 26 & 27 January

Video Auditions

If you are submitting an application by video audition, please read the following guidelines:

  • Register on Acceptd and create your profile.
  • Create your audition video. Instructions on how to make a great audition video can be found in this tutorial.
  • Please take into account the size of the room and its acoustic as well as your distance from the camera: the more reverb in the room, the closer you should be to the camera (usually 3 metres or 10 feet).
  • IMPORTANT: listen to your recording to check that it is what you want the jury to hear.
  • Please note that you must perform all the works/orchestral excerpts listed under the ‘Audition Repertoire’ tab on this page.  You must play the works as if you were giving a live audition (i.e. straight-through in the order listed). The recording must be made in one shot, without cuts or edits.
  • The recording of the two solo works should be approximately three minutes’ duration each (typically the exposition of the concerto or sonata); piano accompaniment is optional. Please choose a place which makes musical sense to stop; recordings that are slightly longer than three minutes are acceptable.
  • Once you are ready to upload your recordings, choose ‘Video Audition’ in the application’s ‘Audition City’ dropdown menu.
  • Upload the video.
  • Once you have submitted your application and paid the application fee, you cannot return to your profile to upload a video.

Audition Repertoire

All works will be played without piano accompaniment at live auditions, even if the original work is scored with accompaniment.

Strings

Violin

Download excerpts

  • Choose one movement from one of the following concerti: Bartók No. 2, Beethoven, Brahms, Mendelssohn E minor, Prokofiev No. 1, Prokofiev No. 2, Sibelius or Tchaikovsky
  • One movement of a Bach solo work
  • Mozart: Symphony No. 39, mvmt 1 – Allegro, bar 26 to 142
  • Strauss: Don Juan, bars 1 to 62
  • Prokofiev: Symphony No. 1, beginning of mvmt 2 until C
Viola

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  • One movement of a solo work of applicant’s choice (Concerto, Sonata, etc.)
  • One movement of a Bach solo work
  • Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra
    • rehearsal mark 12 to bottom of the page
    • 5 bars before rehearsal mark 51 to rehearsal mark 53
  • Rachmaninoff, Piano Concerto No. 2, mvmt 1, rehearsal mark 1 to 3
  • Mahler: Symphony No. 4 – mvmt 3, 16 measures after rehearsal mark 9 to rehearsal mark 11
  • Cilea: Adriana Lecouvreur, Act I, from beginning to rehearsal mark 2
  • Beethoven: Symphony No. 5, mvmt 2, first 59 bars
  • Prokofiev: Symphony No. 1, mvmt 1, from opening until 4 bars before C
  • Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No. 2, mvmt 3, from one bar before rehearsal mark 81 to end of movement
Cello

Download excerpts

  • One movement of a solo work of applicant’s choice (Concerto, Sonata, etc.)
  • One movement of a solo Bach work
  • Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, one bar before rehearsal mark 4 until middle of 8th bar after rehearsal mark 5
  • Beethoven: Symphony No. 5, theme and variation in slow movement (Bar 1 to 10, 49 to 59, 98 to 106)
  • Berg: Violin Concerto, mvmt 1,  bar 54 to 62
  • Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 2, mvmt 3. Bar 1 to 21
  • Mahler: Symphony No. 4, mvmt 1. six bars after rehearsal mark 20 (4/4) until six before rehearsal mark 21
Double Bass

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All applications for the double bass must be made by video audition.

  • Bach: A dance movement from the six cello suites. No preludes and no repeats.
  • Beethoven: Symphony No. 5:
    • Mvmt 3, from beginning to five bars after A
    • Mvmt 4, 18 bars before F to four bars after F
  • Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra:
    • Seven bars after rehearsal mark 35 to rehearsal mark 38
    • Rehearsal mark 43 to 18 after rehearsal mark 47

Absolutely no solo tuning. Candidates playing this audition in solo tuning will be disqualified.

Woodwinds

Flute, Oboe, Clarinet and Bassoon candidates should prepare:

Woodwind players are advised to  inform the jury if they play any auxiliary instruments (piccolo, bass clarinet, English horn, etc.). Playing an orchestral excerpt or short solo piece of the applicant’s choice on auxiliary instruments at the audition is optional. All woodwind players must be willing and able to play auxiliary instruments if requested during the Verbier Festival.

Flute

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Pre-screen video audition repertoire (for those candidates who are applying for a live audition):

  • Mozart Concerto in G major or Concerto in D major, 1st mvmt, exposition and cadenza
  • An additional movement of a solo work of applicant’s choice (with or without piano)
  • Dvořák: Cello Concerto, flute 1, mvmt 2, 18 bars after rehearsal mark 6 to three bars before rehearsal mark 7
  • Prokofiev: Classical Symphony, flute 1, mvmt 4, K to nine bars after L

Repertoire for those invited to a live audition and for those applying by video audition only:

  • Mozart: Concerto in G Major or Concerto in D Major, 1st mvmt, exposition and cadenza
  • An additional movement of a solo work of applicant’s choice (with or without piano)
  • Rimsky Korsakov: Scheherazade, mvmt 2, Q for 13 bars
  • Dvořák: Cello Concerto, flute 1, mvmt 2, 18 bars after rehearsal mark 6 to three bars before rehearsal mark 7
  • Beethoven: 5th Symphony, flute 1, mvmt 2:
    • Lyrical Solo after Letter C (after the fermata), starting 16 bars before Letter D
    • Staccato Solo beginning ten bars before letter E to four bars after Letter E
  • Prokofiev: Classical Symphony, flute 1:
    • Mvmt 2: B to C
    • Mvmt 4:
      • seven bars after B to one bar after D
      • K to nine bars after L
      • seven bars after M to one bar after the double bar (and key change)

Piccolo

  • Rimsky Korsakov: Scheherazade, mvmt 4: 16 bars after V for 12 bars
  • Beethoven: 5th Symphony, piccolo, final mvmt:
    • Allegro (FF) for 21 bars
    • 36 bars before Presto to the down beat of Presto
Oboe

Download excerpts

  • A movement from Mozart C major Concerto
  • An additional movement of a solo work of applicant’s choice
  • Rossini: Overture La Scala di Seta, Opening solo until #3
  • Ravel: Le Tombeau de Couperin, Prélude, beginning to #2, and #8 to #9
  • Brahms: Violin Concerto, mvmt 2, bar 3 to 32
  • Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4, Mvmt 2 opening solo

Two optional excerpts for English Horn:

  • Berlioz: Roman Carnival Overture opening solo
  • Dvořák New World Symphony:  Mvmt 2 opening solo
Clarinet

Download excerpts

Solo work (choose one of the two pieces below):

  • Debussy : Première Rhapsodie
  • One movement of the Mozart Clarinet Concerto

Orchestral Excerpts:

  • Beethoven: Symphony No. 4, mvmt 2, bars 80 to 89, and mvmt 4, bars 297 to 302
  • Kodaly: Dances of Galanta, one bar after rehearsal number 30 to rehearsal number 65
  • Puccini: Tosca – ‘E Lucevan le stelle’ Solo
  • Mendelssohn: Symphony No. 3, mvmt 2 – entire
  • Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade:
    • mvmt 2, cadenza at F
    • mvmt 3, solo five bars before A
    • mvmt 3, D to F


E-flat Clarinet
(optional)

  • Mahler: Symphony No. 4, mvmt 1:
    • five bars after rehearsal mark 11 to nine bars after rehearsal mark 12
    • eight bars after rehearsal mark 15 to two bars after rehearsal mark 17
    • Last six bars
  • Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra
    • From rehearsal mark 8 for three bars
    • four bars after rehearsal mark 19 to rehearsal mark 21
    • six bars before rehearsal mark 43 to rehearsal mark 44

Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring, Rondes Printanières solo


Bass Clarinet
(optional)

  • Mahler: Symphony No. 4, mvmt 1:
    • rehearsal mark 5 for two bars
    • four bars after rehearsal mark 8 for four bars
    • rehearsal mark 10 to 11
  • Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra:
    • four bars after rehearsal mark 13 to rehearsal mark 14
    • seven bars after rehearsal mark 35 to two bars before rehearsal mark 37
  • Shostakovich: Violin Concerto No. 1 – mvmt 2 Scherzo #23 to 13 bars after #24
Bassoon

Download excerpts

  • First movement from Mozart B-flat major Concerto
  • An additional movement of a solo work of applicant’s choice
  • Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade
  • Mozart: Marriage of Figaro Overture, bars 139 to 171
  • Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4, mvmt 2, solo to end
  • Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 6, opening solo

Brass

Horn

Download excerpts

  • One movement of a Mozart Concerto
  • An additional movement of a solo work of applicant’s choice
  • Beethoven: Symphony No. 9, mvmt 3, 4th horn, bars 82 to 100 and 109 to 121
  • Dvořák: Cello Concerto, mvmt 1, bars 56 to 64
  • Mahler: Symphony No. 4, mvmt 2, bars 118 to 133, and 160 to 174; mvmt 3, bars 95 to 105
  • Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto 2, mvmt 1, rehearsal numbers 13 to 14
Trumpet

Download excerpts

  • Haydn Trumpet Concerto in E-flat major, mvmt 1 (played on B-flat trumpet)
  • Stravinsky: Petrouchka: Ballerina’s Dance
  • Mahler: Symphony No. 5, 24 first bars
  • Wagner: Parsifal Overture, nine bars after reh. 1 to six bars before reh. 3
  • Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition, Promenade
  • Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, beginning to three bars after reh. 1 and 11 bars after reh. 3 (for four bars)
  • Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade, mvmt 2, 17 measures before K to L (first and second trumpet)
Tenor Trombone

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Please note that applications for the Tenor Trombone, Bass Trombone and Tuba will be considered for the reserve or extra list only. Therefore, should your application be successful, you will be added to the reserve list and invited to the festival if space becomes available, or if an extra player is needed for a concert.

  • Two solo pieces or movements of contrasting character and period
  • Mozart: Requiem (Tuba Mirum)
  • Ravel: Bolero, solo, three bars after #10 to #11
  • Wagner: Ride of the Walkyries
  • Strauss: Zarathustra, 1st trombone, four bars before rehearsal #16 to rehearsal #16 and six bars after rehearsal #50 to four bars after rehearsal #53
  • Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade, 2nd trombone, mvmt 2, four bars after D to F
Bass Trombone

Download excerpts

Please note that applications for the Tenor Trombone, Bass Trombone and Tuba will be considered for the reserve or extra list only. Therefore, should your application be successful, you will be added to the reserve list and invited to the festival if space becomes available, or if an extra player is needed for a concert.

  • One solo piece
  • Wagner: Ride of the Valkyries
  • Wagner: Das Rheingold, Scene 4 Entrance of the Gods into Valhalla
  • Kodaly: Hary Janos, mvmt 4, four bars after rehearsal #5 to 28 bars after rehearsal #5
  • Schumann: Symphony No. 3, mvmt 4, bars 1-23
  • Mozart: Requiem, Kyrie, seven bars before rehearsal letter F to the end
  • Strauss: Zarathustra, eight bars before rehearsal #6 to two bars after rehearsal #6
Tuba

Download excerpts

Please note that applications for the Tenor Trombone, Bass Trombone and Tuba will be considered for the reserve or extra list only. Therefore, should your application be successful, you will be added to the reserve list and invited to the festival if space becomes available, or if an extra player is needed for a concert.

  • One solo piece
  • Wagner: Ride of the Valkyries
  • Wagner: Die Meistersinger Overture, opening bars 1-27, solo bars 158-188
  • Prokofiev: Symphony #5, 1st movement rehearsal #3 to 7 bars after rehearsal #5
  • Berlioz: Hungarian March Overture, rehearsal #20 to end
  • Strauss: Zarathustra:
    • rehearsal #6 to six bars after rehearsal #6
    • five bars after rehearsal #16 to three bars before rehearsal #17
    • Ziemlich langsam after rehearsal #17 to eight bars after Ziemlich langsam

Harp

Download excerpts

All applications for harp must be made by video audition.

  • Two solo pieces (or movements) of contrasting character and period.
  • Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique, mvmt 2
  • Verdi: La Forza del Destino overture, from G to O
  • Strauss: Also sprach Zarathustra, 15 bars after 3 for ten bars and 47 to eight after 49
  • Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor, harp solo with cadenza

Percussion 

Download excerpts

Live auditions for percussionists will be held in Berlin New York, Geneva and Zurich only. All other applications should be made by video audition.

Marimba
  • Bach: Bach Sonata No. 2 in B minor, Tempo di Bourée mvmt, played without repeats
Snare Drum
  • Prokofiev: Lt Kije, Opening 1 to 2
  • Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio Espagnol – Scena e Canto Gitano, long roll plus ten measures
  • Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade – mvmt 3, D to E;  mvmt 4, P to R
Xylophone
  • Stravinsky: L’Oiseau de Feu (1910) 127 to 133
  • Shostakovich: Symphony No. 4, mvmt 3, bars 206 to 208
  • Messiaen: Oiseaux Exotiques 6 to 7
Timpani
  • Beethoven: Symphony No. 9, mvmt 1, 19th measure after to the end
  • Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4, mvmt 1, begin two measures before T to the third measure before U
  • Martin: Concerto for Seven Winds

Ambassadors

Verbier Festival Orchestra Ambassadors include members or former members of the Orchestra from around the world. They are available to answer your questions about the application procedure or auditions and are happy to share information about their experiences as part of the VFO.  We are now confirming our Ambassadors for 2018. Please visit this page again soon!

Frequently Asked Questions

I will be younger than 18 or older than 28 on 1 July 2018
We do not accept applications from candidates younger or older than the stated requirements.  Musicians aged 15 to 18 may consider the Verbier Festival Junior Orchestra. Musicians aged 18 may apply to either the VFO or VFJO.

When will my live audition be scheduled?
Visit the ‘Live Auditions’ tab on this page for a list of cities and dates.  You will be notified of your assigned date and time by email no later than 23 December 2017.

I already know that I’m not available on the day planned for my preferred audition city.  What shall I do?
Should you already know that you are unavailable on a particular date, please inform Samuel Goldscheider, Orchestras Manager. While the Orchestras team does its best to accommodate scheduling requests, it cannot guarantee that all requests can be met.

Is priority given to either live or video audition applicants?
Priority is not given to those who audition live.  However, we recommend auditioning live in order for the jury to meet you in person.

Does the quality of sound for video applications matter that much?
Yes, the sound quality is of great importance for your video audition.  Please read the ‘Video Audition’ tab on this page.

Can my CV be in a language other than English?
Yes, we accept CVs in English, French, German or Spanish.

Do I need to record my video with or without the score/sheet music?
You may record your video with the score/sheet music.

Other Questions
Please email:
Samuel Goldscheider
Orchestras Manager