Assistant Conductor: applications feedback

We’re providing the following general feedback to applicants based on a number of applications which fell short, or could have been made stronger with improved presentation. Of course not all points apply to everyone, but each point came up several times across the applications we received. 

  • Always send what has been asked for. If the application asks for a video and a C.V., there’s no wriggle room on that. We have to judge everyone on an equal basis. That meant anyone who applied without a video had to be excluded.
  • Your CV: always send a PDF, not a word document. And if you do many things as a musician, make sure you send a CV that is tailored to focus on the specifics of the job description. Or you can address the specifics in your application email (as some of you did). 
  • Your video: try to have a video that focuses on you as a player might see you, so not from the audience’s perspective. Having a camera on the second or third desk of violas is good; your whole body should be in shot, and your face and hands clearly visible. The sound quality or indeed the quality of the ensemble is not nearly as important as you might think. Play your video to someone without the sound – ask them if your gestures and intentions are clear. Including rehearsal footage is useful as it shows how you communicate and engage with the players. 
  • Your application email:  tell us something other than there’s an attachment on the email. Tell us that you’ve looked us up, that you understand or like what we’re doing. Your email is the starting point of a possible relationship. If you’re not interested in us, we’re not inclined to be interested in you. Spend some time researching and charm us at little. Trust us – it really works. This wasn’t a requirement of the application, but just like in music – not everything is written down. Use your interpretative skills to judge the situation and act accordingly.
We hope these points are useful to you and wish you all the best with your future applications,
Street Orchestra Team