Schools Spectacular

Featured artist – vocalist and backing vocalist

Applications for this category will close at 5:00 pm Monday 4 March 2024.

A featured vocalist or backing vocalist at the Schools Spectacular is a student from a NSW Public School who is a high-potential and gifted vocalist and performer, capable of leading the musical forces of the production. This category is open to students from Kindergarten to Year 12 from all parts of the state and is an excellent platform for developing and showcasing strong performance skills from new, emerging and experienced talent.

Audition process

The featured vocalist and backing vocalist audition occurs in three parts:

  • video audition round
  • first live audition round
  • final live audition round.

Students from Kindergarten to Year 12 can apply for the featured vocalist and backing vocalist category.

Video audition round

1. Record video audition

Students are asked to present two contrasting pieces (for instance, ballad and up-tempo or rock and musical theatre) that will allow the audition panel to assess tone, pitch, rhythm, dynamics, diction and performance presentation. Items should be no more than two minutes in length. Items must represent an appropriate song choice for age.

2. Upload videos and submit an application form

Students who were featured vocalists or backing vocalists in the 2023 Schools Spectacular need to submit an application form; however, they will not be required to upload a video audition.

3. Email confirmation

Students will receive a confirmation email once the application has been submitted. The student's parent/carer and school principal will also receive an email asking them to endorse the application. Please note that endorsement from the student's principal and parent/carer is required to be considered for the featured artist role in Schools Spectacular.

4. Notification of results

All applicants will be notified of their video audition results by Term 1 Week 9.


First live audition round

1. Live audition

Successful applicants will be invited to attend the next part of the audition process, the first live audition round in Sydney. We anticipate that there will also be a possibility of live auditions in Mildura (at Pulse Far West), Coffs Harbour (at Compass) and Bega (at Compass). For the first live audition, students will perform in front of a panel. They will prepare and present two contrasting pieces. 

We strongly encourage students to present different items to the two submitted for the video round, but this is not essential. Applicants should perform repertoire that best demonstrates their technical and performance skills. Repertoire should be no more than two minutes in length and must represent an appropriate song choice for age.

Students will also participate in a workshop supporting skill development and student wellbeing.

2. Notification of results

Applicants will be notified of their first live audition results by Term 2 Week 2.


Final live audition round

1. Live audition

If successful in the first live audition, students will progress to the final live audition round. In this round, students will be given short excerpts of songs being considered for the 2024 Schools Spectacular to assess their suitability for the show's content. Students will be required to prepare and present these excerpts to the panel.

2. Notification of results

All applicants will be notified of their final live audition results by Term 2 Week 9.

Cost

The costume and prop fee will be $150 + $30 show t-shirt fee per student.

The total cost will be direct debited from the student's school. Students will need to pay the costume, prop, and t-shirt fee directly to their school once they are notified of their acceptance into the production.

Some assistance may be available for students with financial hardship in extenuating circumstances. Following discussions with the school, if students require further support, please email enquiries to schoolsspectacular@det.nsw.edu.au.

Audition tips

  • Make sure the balance between the soloist and the accompaniment (such as the backing track, piano and band) is correct. It is critical that the person auditioning can be clearly heard.
  • Students should discuss and review their audition video with their school music teacher prior to submitting it.
  • Record the video audition in a room with a neutral acoustic. The school hall or auditorium will often have too much echo to record a video. The school’s music classroom will normally have the best acoustic for recording your audition.
  • There should be no pre-recorded vocals in the audition video.
  • Performance presentation (including stance, dress, stage presence), as well as vocal and instrumental talent, will be taken into account when evaluating auditionees.
For more audition tips, visit Top tips for auditioning.