Schools Spectacular

Specialist ensembles

Applications for this category are now closed.

The Schools Spectacular specialist ensembles category extends an opportunity to NSW Public School groups, to showcase a wide variety of musical, dance, and theatrical talents. This category is open to groups of students in Kindergarten to Year 12 and is an excellent platform to showcase new, emerging, and experienced specialty acts, rock bands, small vocal ensembles, cultural groups, ballroom dancing duos, magicians, and more.

Audition process

Please consider all Schools Spectacular ensemble categories before submitting your application, as there may be a more suitable category for your act.

Groups involved in the specialist ensembles category will be selected via the following process:

1. Record audition videos

School groups are asked to present at least one piece that will allow the audition panel to assess student skills and performance quality. It is encouraged that applicants provide two contrasting pieces for the audition. Items should be no more than three minutes. 

2. Upload the videos and submit an application form

  • The entire group may not be selected. The exact number selected for your group will be notified upon acceptance.
  • All students must be present in the video. Students should be rotated during the audition item so that all students are in the foreground at some stage during the video.
  • Audition videos need to be uploaded to YouTube and the video link submitted with the application form. For assistance with uploading your video, please refer to the How to upload a video to YouTube guide.

3. Confirmation email

The contact teacher will receive a confirmation email once the application has been submitted and the school principal will be notified to endorse the application.

4. Notification of results

Some groups may be asked to attend a live audition in Sydney during Term 2. All applicants will be notified of their final results by Term 2, Week 9.

Key dates for specialist ensembles

Listed below is a guide to which rehearsals specialist ensembles may be required to attend, depending on their act. Students will only be required to attend rehearsal days when their item is scheduled to rehearse. This information will be communicated to successful applicants at a later date.

Date Time Details Venue
Mon 29 Jan   Applications open  
Mon 4 Mar 5:00 pm Applications close  
TBC   Live audition (if required) The Arts Unit
Fri 21 June   Application results sent  
TBC 9:00 am – 3:00 pm Item rehearsal 1 TBC
TBC 9:00 am – 3:00 pm Item rehearsal 2 TBC
Mon 4 Nov TBC First combined rehearsal

Qudos Bank Arena

TBC 9:00 am – 3:00 pm Item rehearsal 3 TBC
TBC 9:00 am – 3:00 pm Item rehearsal 4 TBC
Wed 27 Nov TBC Second combined rehearsal day 1

Qudos Bank Arena

Thu 28 Nov TBC Second combined rehearsal day 2
Dress rehearsal

Qudos Bank Arena

Fri 29 Nov 11:00 am and 7:00 pm Schools Spectacular performance

Qudos Bank Arena

Sat 30 Nov 1:00 pm and 7:00 pm Schools Spectacular performance

Qudos Bank Arena



The costume and prop fee will be $150 per student.

Costume costs will be direct debited from the student's school. Students will need to pay the costume fee directly to their school once notified of their acceptance into the production.

Audition tips

  • Please do not submit a video of the students in a performance (such as a school performance or presentation night or dance festival). Please submit a current video.
  • Audition videos should be filmed in a school hall or dance classroom with normal room lighting.
  • Please film your video in a room that has the window or doorway covered so that light from outside doesn’t interfere with the quality of the video.
  • Performance presentation and ability to captivate and entertain an audience will be taken into account when evaluating auditionees.
  • Record the 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.
For more audition tips, visit Top tips for auditioning.


  • All students at the Schools Spectacular must be supervised by a teacher at all times.
  • Schools must provide a supervising teacher for the following categories: combined dance, combined choir, specialist ensembles, Aboriginal dance ensemble, and D’Arts ensemble students.
  • Each group will require their own supervising teacher, even if they are from the same school.
  • Relief for supervising teachers is the responsibility of the school.
  • Teachers are encouraged to provide active supervision at all times and support the production team during rehearsals and show week.