New early entry scheme attracts talented music students

25 August 2020
Talented musicians receive greater certainty around their future
Classical performers, Arkie Moore and Ella Simons are among the first group of talented musicians accepted into the Sydney Conservatorium of Music under the new Creative Arts Special Admissions Scheme (CASAS), for entry in 2021.

Under the new Creative Arts Special Admissions Scheme talented students won’t need to wait for their ATAR results to receive an unconditional offer, with admissions now based on auditions and interviews.

Selected on their ability and potential rather than academic ranking, Arkie and Ella can now complete their year 12 studies, with certainty around their future.

Trumpet player, Arkie Moore, is currently completing her year 12 studies at Newtown High School of Performing Arts, and is thankful to receive an early offer.

“It has taken off so much pressure, and will allow me to relax and enjoy my remaining time at school,” said Arkie.

“Trials were much less stressful thanks to the Creative Arts Special Admissions Scheme; I had a much more positive mindset going in to the exams.”  

Knowing I’ve secured a place allows me to apply myself without having to worry about the outcome. I don’t feel like I’m just working to achieve a certain mark anymore, and studying has unexpectedly become more enjoyable.
Arkie Moore

For regional student, Ella Simons of Merewether High School, receiving an early offer has really put the ATAR into perspective.

“The looming stress of the final months of year 12 suddenly seem much more manageable. It has also given me something to look forward to and work towards, which is a great motivator to get the most out of the time I have before the course begins to improve my technique and skill,” said Ella.

The audition process

Eligible applicants are assessed based on a combination of academic performance and audition requirements. Due to COVID-19 restrictions auditions will not be in person this year; instead applicants submit a recorded audition and are interviewed via Zoom.

For Arkie, the early entry audition process blended in with her HSC music preparation and did not feel like an additional workload. “The timing was perfect. Preparing a video audition is way more relaxing than a live audition. I always find listening to different recordings is the best way to prepare for a set excerpt,” said Arkie.

Auditioning early in the year was one of the best decisions that I have made; the relief of receiving a university offer, especially in something that you’re passionate about, cannot be understated, particularly in the relative uncertainty of this year. I would definitely recommend it!
Ella Simons

Dreams for the future

Arkie is looking forward to joining the Con next year, and playing with and learning from many amazing musicians, tutors, conductors and composers. “I can’t wait to expand my music knowledge and play difficult repertoire both in ensembles, and as a solo performer.”

“I hope to develop both my classical and jazz playing, and become a better trumpet teacher. I would love to travel, and work with musicians around the world. I would also love to work in a professional orchestra, and direct a small ensemble.”

Ella is excited about the many possible opportunities in music. “I’ve got a lot of time to decide where I want to go with my clarinet playing. I love teaching, but I also love chamber ensembles and orchestras. Hopefully, I will get to be a part of as many experiences and opportunities as I can. Most of all, I can’t wait for a lifetime of doing what I love!”

Thinking of applying?

Domestic applicants undertaking a current recognised high school (Year 12) qualification and applying via UAC, may be eligible for an early offer of admission prior to the release of ATARs or equivalent score under the University’s Creative Arts Special Admission Scheme.

The available degrees using the new admissions scheme include: Bachelor of Music, Bachelor of Music (Composition) and Bachelor of Music (Performance).

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