NKK NXT 22/23: trainees wanted

Did you study (classical) singing, but do you want to do more than just singing on stage? Do you have a broad repertoire, but do you really want to develop your improvisational skills? Or maybe you want to learn more about creative processes and artistic creation? Apply now for one of the places as trainee with NKK NXT 22/23, the talent development programme of the Netherlands Chamber Choir! In the upcoming concert season, the Netherlands Chamber Choir is joining forces with the Utrecht-based Rosa Ensemble. The two ensembles are offering eight traineeship places for talented young singers who are ready for the next step in their career and who not only want to develop themselves further as ensemble singer, but also practice their skills as creative thinker and artist.

Trainees with NKK NXT 22/23 are offered a temporary position with the Netherlands Chamber Choir and the opportunity to learn, experiment, and create. You’ll be co-creator in a new co-production of the Netherlands Chamber Choir and Rosa Ensemble: Minamitori. Besides the time you’ll be spending developing and creating this production, you’ll be coached by members and staff of the Netherlands Chamber Choir and several other leading experts in areas like ensemble singing, improvisation, creative thinking and stage presentation – skills which enable you to shape the future of choral music.

NKK NXT 21/22 met Wende - foto Bl

NKK NXT 21/22 with Wende – picture: bullet-ray

The Netherlands Chamber Choir is looking for eight talented young singers who recently completed relevant studies, like classical singing, or who have other relevant experience. Candidates with a more theatrical background and a well-developed voice are invited to apply too. We are organizing two auditioning moments during which we will get acquainted with you, your voice, and your other talents. We also consider your previous experience, but also your own view of the future of choral music and your motivation to apply for a place as trainee. If you are selected, the Netherlands Chamber Choir will offer you a temporary position as trainee, starting in October 2022 and ending in May 2023 (two days per week on average).

“At NKK NXT, I get the possibility to bring my idea of the future ensemble singing to life” – Juncai Zhang (NKK NXT 21/22)

Netherlands Chamber Choir and Rosa Ensemble
For NKK NXT 22/23, the Netherlands Chamber Choir is joining forces with the Utrecht-based Rosa Ensemble. The trainee-singers will be an integral part of a new co-production of the two ensembles: Minamitori. This show is named after a Japanese island in the Pacific Ocean where recently more than 16 million tonnes of rare metals were found. The performance explores humanity’s search for a contemporary Holy Grail: rare metals which are needed for computer chips powering cell phones, laptops and every other ‘smart’ device.

As NKK NXT’er, you’ll be challenged to get involved in all aspects of this production and take on an active role in the creative process leading up to the performances.  You’ll take on different roles and experiment and learn in different positions, from being a composer to a light designer and from being a co-director to a producer. Ending up with a solo monologue or seeing your own light design come to live in the performance: it’s up to you!

What is NKK NXT?
NKK NXT is the talent development programme of the Netherlands Chamber Choir (Nederlands Kamerkoor). The choir invests in the education and development of these talented your singers through a paid part-time placement as trainee, with extensive coaching by professionals from the choir and the cultural field. The trainees are not only coached in their skills in ensemble singing, but also in areas like stage presence, choreography and artistic development. NKK NXT is a bridge between the musicians and creators fresh out of music school and the professional cultural field: a chance to gain valuable stage experience, but also a place to experiment, develop as an artist and creative professional, and to make new connections.

“NKK NXT gave me the opportunity to investigate what I can do as a singer to contribute to my vision of a better society” – Merel Wentink (NKK NXT 20/21)

The succes of NKK NXT has been proven by now – the past editions resulted in engaging and moving performances, based on themes and subjects from the lives of these young singers, but also in collaborations with renowned artists and companies like Wende Snijders, Chantal Acda and Silbersee. Part of the NKK NXT trainees continue with their shows after the programme ends and are still performing at festivals. Former trainees are now working as theatre maker or conductor or are singing in professional ensembles.

Practical info
If you are selected as trainee, you’ll be offered a temporary position as trainee with the Netherlands Chamber Choir from mid-October until the end of May. The workload will vary across the duration of the traineeship but will amount to 2 days a week on average. For this reason the position offered will be 0.4FTE. The position is placed on scale 4, periodical 0 of the Dutch CAO Muzieksensembles (collective labour agreement).

The start of the traineeship will take place on the 17th of October 2022, with a workload of a varying number of days per week until the premiere of Minamitori in May 2023. A number of performances taking place after the premiere are still being planned – salary for these performances will be equal to the salary for the traineeship.

NKK NXT 18/19 – picture: Veerle Bastiaansen

Application process
There are two audition rounds:

  • In the first round you will submit an online form in which we ask you to reflect on your learning goals, your views on the field of choral singing and the qualities you expect to add to the group of trainees. At the end of the form we are asking you to submit to files:
    • A curriculum vitae (in PDF)
    • A video file (maximum 5 minutes) in which you present yourself vocally/musically. What you sing is up to you – choose something that is close to your experience and/or education in which we are able to hear your voice clearly. Feel free to introduce the piece you’re singing and to handle this assignment creatively – for example by sending in your own composition or showing/displaying other creative or artistic skills.
  • From the applications we will make a selection for live auditions, taking place on July 4 and 5 2022, in Utrecht. You’ll be invited for one of the two days. In this second round, you’ll join the other candidates in a series of workshops dealing with ensemble singing, improvisation and theatrical skills. You will also be singing for a commission.

Deadline and procedure
The deadline for the applications is 19 June 2022, 18:00 (UTC+2/Amsterdam time). You will hear the 23rd of June 23 at the latest whether you’ve been selected for the second round. If you are selected you will receive the second audition programme and some tasks to prepare right away. We’ll also send along an extended planning of the traineeship. The live audition moments will take place on 4 and 5 July 2022 from 10:00 until 17:00 (you will be asked for one of those two days). You will hear whether you have been selected for NKK NXT 22/23 the 7th of July at the latest.

Apply now
Click the button below to go the the application form (English version coming soon). In the second part of the form we ask you to answer a number of questions about your motivation and your views on choral singing. We recommend that you download the questions and prepare your answers in advance to avoid losing your progress if something would happen while filling in the form.

Apply now

Questions?
Do you have any questions about the NKK NXT programme, the traineeship or the application process? Reach out to Imre Ploeg, artistic director of NKK NXT, via nxt@nederlandskamerkoor.nl or call us at + 31 30 230 30 20.