We are always delighted to welcome new members to TWSO, Waikato's community orchestra.

Player Guidelines

The orchestra is open to all musicians, but a proficiency of Grade 6 level or above is recommended for you to find the experience most rewarding.

Allocation of players to a programme
If there are more players registered than needed for a specific instrument or a specific part in a programme/project, the conductor will within reason try to accommodate them by sharing works within a programme, or doubling parts if appropriate.

Placement of players
The placement of players as principal, second etc is entirely at the discretion of the conductor. The conductor may within reason ask certain players to play secondary parts only, even if this leads to sharing and/or the need to bring in extra players to play the principal parts.

Support your fellow players
As a community orchestra we offer opportunities for player development where possible. Please be encouraging to your fellow musicians.


  • Please commit fully to the rehearsal schedule for the programme you have registered for - attending rehearsals regularly and keeping us informed in advance when you have unavoidable conflicts.
  • Acceptance of a registration is on the expectation that you will have no more than two planned rehearsals absent.
  • If you are unable to attend a rehearsal due to unforeseen circumstances, please contact Orchestras Central’s Artistic Manager, Catherine Polglase at artistic@orchestras.org.nz to record your apology.
  • If you are playing with TWSO for the first time or after a period away from the orchestra, make yourself known to both the conductor and your section leader prior to the start of your first rehearsal.


  • Support the rest of your section by preparing your part ahead of the rehearsal period, practicing your part between rehearsals and listening to recommended recordings of the repertoire.
  • Return any music that is loaned to you after the performance/s in a clean condition. Please mark your music with a soft pencil only (2B) and only add necessary musical markings, remembering that someone must erase all unnecessary markings before the music is returned to its source.

Rehearsal etiquette

  • Please be seated ready to tune five minutes before the rehearsal start time.
  • When the concertmaster stands to tune, please be quiet. This signals that they are ready for the orchestra to tune up. Wait for the oboe to give the A. The Leader will tune the orchestra by section (strings, wind, brass). Sections not being tuned should be silent.
  • Please only tune quietly so that others can hear their own tuning. String players, initially tune your A only. When the Leader sits down you may then (and not before) tune your other strings quietly.
  • To help everyone stay focused and to ensure efficient use of rehearsal time, please avoid unnecessary talking during rehearsals. We encourage players to mix socially at the rehearsal breaks, and before and after rehearsals.
  • When there is a break in the middle of the rehearsal for coffee, tea and chat, please do listen for when you need to be back in place to re-start.


  • Be prepared to meet the Dress Code for each concert, which can vary and will be announced in advance.

Registration fees

  • Registration fees (also known as player levies/subs) will be reviewed annually, and any increase will be notified by 1 December of the previous year.
  • Please pay the appropriate registration fee or ‘pay what you can’ option in a timely fashion. Each registration will have a ‘pay by’ date, after which you will be invoiced for the amount that you have selected. If you have not submitted a payment form, you will be invoiced for the non-discounted amount.

Running a community orchestra

We encourage players to build the ‘team spirit’ and foster the TWSO player community. You can support TWSO by taking an active role in the many non-musical tasks that are an essential part of running a community orchestra.

  • The venue needs to be set up before rehearsal. As a community orchestra we appreciate players turning up early to help set up the seating and music stands.
  • At the end of rehearsal please help to put the chairs, music stands etc back where they were before rehearsal. This is a requirement of our use of the Gallagher Academy of the Arts Facilities.
  • At concerts, please consider volunteering to stage manage, help with loading/ unloading the truck.

Your contribution is important to the orchestra community as a whole - your commitment enables us to produce rewarding, positive and enjoyable experiences for everyone.

Other performance opportunities
If you meet with TWSO players for other small ensemble music making and would like to be considered for any performing opportunities that might arise, please contact Catherine Polglase as below.

Contact information
Catherine Polglase, Artistic Manager artistic@orchestras.org.nz 021 129 7346


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