Become a Musical Leader

Owing to the developing coronavirus situation, Musical Leaders scheme will return when the University of Reading campus reopens to students.


We audition all potential musical leaders so that we can ensure that Music at Reading and the University of Reading are represented by student musicians of the highest standard throughout the year. We do not expect players to arrive with every piece in their repertoire concert ready and we will work with you over the summer term to support your development as a musician ready for performances in the autumn. 

Audition Requirements:

  • Performance: You will be asked to perform one piece, no less than two minutes and up to five minutes long; piano accompaniment is not required and you will not be penalised for performing unaccompanied. You will need to decide your audition piece before filling in the registration form.
  • Interview: You are likely to be asked about your performance, musical background, previous experience of leadership (particularly within music ensembles), and aspirations as a performer and a leader.
  • Set List Task, you will be asked to prepare a set list for an upcoming event, and be prepared to speak about this in the interview. 

 If you don’t receive an email, please check your junk/spam/other folders as emails from this system are occasionally mis-identified as spam. 


Application Guidance:

The application form is a detailed questionnaire covering several important areas. Your answers will be evaluated by a panel, likely to include the Artistic Director, Music Coordinator, and current Musical Leaders – excluding those who are reapplying. 

  • General Information: You will be asked to let us know general information about yourself, including contact details and any instrument specialisms if applicable
  • Why should you become a Musical Leader: Let us know why you think you would make a great Musical Leader, what skills will you bring and how would you like to develop your skills further?
  • Audition Information: Let us know what piece you will be auditioning with, and why you have chosen this particular piece –  you should explain any particular meaning this piece holds for you, or explain what skills it demonstrates.
    • If your performance usually needs piano accompaniment, please let us know so that we can take this into account when adjudicating. 
    • If you are auditioning as part of a group, please submit an application each, but one combined performance recording (use multi-track recording/video editing to combine your separate videos into one submission). 
  • Demographic Data: in order to improve our reach throughout the University, we are asking for certain demographic information so that we can analyse who we are reaching, and where we need to improve. Your data will not be passed on to any third parties.


Duration and Commitment

We expect Musical Leaders to be fully committed throughout the year, from May until the following April. We know that students have different calls upon their time throughout the year, so we ask you to let us know any particularly difficult periods as early as possible. The timetable for each term will be made available as soon as possible.

  • Monthly meetings, during term time; our programme includes conducting training, performance coaching, and chamber ensemble rehearsals
  • Events and performances as agreed, usually 1-2 per term
  • Solo rehearsal, to prepare for performances as above


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