Frequently asked questions


Why is there an application fee?

To ensure that everyone who applies to AYO gets an equal opportunity all applicants are offered an audition or interview. The $95 application fee goes towards covering their running costs.


Auditions, interviews and portfolios

Where can I find the audition dates?

View the full list of audition dates here. You’ll be sent your final audition time and date on 15 July 2019.

Where can I get my audition excerpts?

After you’ve completed your application you will have instant access to the 2020 excerpts. You’ll find them in the portal under ‘My Auditions’.

What time should I arrive at my audition?

Please arrive at least 15 minutes before your audition start time. There will be a warm-up room available for you to use beforehand.

When is it acceptable to submit a recorded audition?

Recorded auditions are mandatory for applicants auditioning on piano, harp, and as part of an established ensemble.

In some circumstances, it is permitted for other applicants to submit a recorded audition. Applicants may submit a recorded audition in the following conditions:

  • If an applicant lives in a regional area and, as a result, cannot attend a live audition at one of the listed audition locations
  • If an applicant will be overseas for the day of their audition
  • If an applicant is unwell on the day of their audition
  • If an applicant has a school or university exam on the day of their audition

If any of these circumstances apply to you, please request a recorded audition when completing your application.

I would like to audition on my doubling instrument, but I don’t own one. What should I do?

Please get in touch with the AYO office, as often we are able to source these instruments for the purpose of your audition.

Can I have feedback from my audition/portfolio?

Due to the high volume of applicants for AYO programs we are unable to provide individual feedback on auditions and portfolios.

I have a reserve spot for an AYO program. What happens now?

Only a handful of musicians receive a reserve offer, so having one is a great achievement. The changing of a reserve offer to a successful offer is completely dependent upon how many participants withdraw from a program, which makes it impossible for us to predict! To protect our applicants’ privacy we are unable to disclose information about reserve lists.


Money matters

Can I get a refund if I withdraw from a program?

Yes, applicants are able to receive a refund if they withdraw from a program. However, a termination fee of $50 per whole calendar month applies from the date of acceptance to the withdrawal date; and if costs have been incurred by AYO (such as flights being booked on behalf of the applicant), this will be deducted from your refund amount.

How does a payment plan work?

A payment plan allows you to pay a portion of your total fees each month over a year.

Can I wait until I receive notification of my financial assistance application to pay my fees?

Yes. If we receive an application for financial assistance, we will wait for the outcome before asking you for payment.



When will I receive my music?

You’ll receive your music at least one month before the start of your AYO program.

What do you mean by ‘shared accommodation’?

Accommodation varies a little from program to program, but we usually stay in university accommodation or similar. Sometimes you’ll share a room with other musicians, and sometimes you’ll have a room to yourself. All shared rooms are single-sex.

I live in the town or city where my program is held. Can I stay at home?

Embarking on an adventure away from home is one of the most enjoyable parts of the AYO experience. Rehearsals, tutorials and activities often take place in the evenings, and for this reason we recommend staying on-site with the rest of your colleagues.

I can only attend one of the two AYO seasons, can I still participate?

To be a part of the Australian Youth Orchestra, you must be available to participate in both seasons.

Can I miss the first day because of another commitment?

No. Participants must arrive and depart on the days outlined in the program details.

How do I withdraw from an AYO program?

If you can no longer attend an AYO program, please contact us at the AYO office to arrange your withdrawal.

Do you have a conducting program?

Unfortunately we do not offer a conducting program.


Parents’ corner

Can I volunteer to help out on a program?

Absolutely! If you are interested in volunteering, please get in touch with the AYO office.

Will there be somebody to meet my child at the airport?

Yes. One of our staff members waits at the airport to oversee transfers for all AYO musicians.

Is there a curfew at night time?

Yes. All musicians under 18 are required to sign in at their accommodation every evening. The curfew time varies a little from program to program, depending on evening rehearsals and activities.


Do you have a question that hasn't been answered?

Submit your enquiry in the form below and we'll get back to you.

Confirmation Message

Thank you for your question. We'll get back to you soon!