Carnegie Hall | Musikverein Vienna | Royal Festival Hall at Southbank Centre | Sydney Opera House


Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions about the program and application process. Do not hesitate to call or email our team with additional questions.

What is the Young Adult Honors Performance Series?

The Young Adult Series brings together young musicians who have pursued their musical interests into college and beyond. Selected Finalists are brought together for six days in Sydney, Australia, with international peers to further their abilities, network with other talented musicians, work with renowned conductors, and ultimately take part in an advanced Sydney Opera House performance.

Who are the conductors?

Our 2019 Honors Conductor will be announced in Fall 2018. Past Conductors for the Young Adult Honors Performance at Carnegie Hall have included Jeffery Redding and Eph Ehly. 

All of our conductors have received international acclaim for their work and have extensive experience in working with talented students, making them the perfect choices to lead our Honors Ensembles. Click here to learn more about all of our distinguished Honors Conductors.

What do Finalists do in Sydney?


The program was developed to challenge young musicians who have advanced their skills beyond high school to further their abilities, network with other talented musicians, work with renowned conductors, and ultimately take part in an advanced Sydney Opera House performance. Though much of the musicians’ time is focused on performance preparation, the week also allows students to experience the best of the sights of Sydney and the surrounding area.

Highlights of the 6-day program are planned to include (tentative and subject to change):

  • Perform as part of the Honors Choir or Honors String Orchestra in the Honors Performance at Sydney Opera House under the direction of renowned conductors.
  • Work with master conductors and build your performing resume.
  • Rehearse and interact with other Finalists from across the world.
  • Celebrate your accomplishments on a Finalist Celebration Cruise on Sydney Harbour.
  • Experience the highlights of Sydney, including a day trip into the Blue Mountains to see some of Australia’s famed animal species, such as kangaroos, emus, and koalas.
When is the 2019 Young Adult Honors Performance Series at Sydney Opera House?

The 2019 Young Adult Series will take place July 31-August 5, 2019, with the Honors Performance at Sydney Opera House on Sunday, August 4.

What ensembles will perform at the 2019 Young Adult Honors Performances at Sydney Opera House?


The 2019 Young Adult Honors Performance Series is planned to feature a mixed, SATB choir. Prior to selecting applicants for the 2019 ensemble, balance requirements will be finalized based on the repertoire selected by the conductor and the applications received. At this time, based on these requirements and feedback from our Selection Board, selected applicants may be assigned to a different voice part than indicated on their application.

Instrumentalists are encouraged to apply for the 2019 Young Adult Honors Performance Series at Carnegie Hall.

What is the connection between the Honors Performance Series and WorldStrides?

The Honors Performance Series is coordinated by WorldStrides OnStage (formerly WorldStrides Heritage Performance). For more than three decades, WorldStrides has strived to promote excellence among choirs, bands, and orchestras by providing outstanding educational and performance opportunities for accomplished student performers across the world. They are proud to support the Honors Performance Series as yet another unique educational and performance opportunity for talented instrumentalists and singers.

How are Finalists selected?


  • Music professionals from across the world recognize and nominate talented young musicians.
  • Nominated and self-nominating musicians are invited to apply individually for selection.
  • Applicants submit a complete application and audition recording. Self-nominating students must submit an additional recommendation.
  • All applications are reviewed by the Series’ expert Board of music professionals for final selection.
  • Each applicant receives a notification email to the address(es) listed on their application at the end of October. This email will specifies the student’s application results: Finalist (selected to perform), First Runner-up (waitlisted), or Deferred (not accepted and not waitlisted).
What are the application requirements?


The Young Adult Honors Performance Series application requirements are as follows. Please see the application page for additional details.

  • Complete Application Form
  • Nomination or Recommendation
  • Complete Performing Biography form
  • Audition recording
  • Application deposit (the full deposit amount, minus a $10 application fee is refunded if not selected; once a participant is accepted, his or her deposit becomes non-refundable)

Applicants for the Young Adult Series are required to submit all application materials online. Applications will not be considered until all required pieces are received. If an applicant fails to submit required portions, their deposit is not refunded.

What are the requirements of the audition recording?

Each applicant must submit a 3-5 minute mp3 or m4a audition recording. Recordings must meet the criteria outlined on the application (please visit the application page for additional information).

Can family participate?

Parents, family members, and friends are welcome to join their Finalist by either purchasing one of our Family Program packages or by purchasing individual tickets to the performance. This is a wonderful experience to share with family and friends. Additional details will be announced in November following Finalist selection announcements. Other than individual tickets to the Sydney Opera House  performance, all hotels, activities, touring, and events are available only as a part of a package and cannot be purchased individually.

How do you ensure performer safety?
he safety and security of our student performers is our highest priority. Though all Finalists will be provided options to have family participate in a Family Program package, we recognize that many students may be traveling to Sydney alone. We’re proud to say that the Honors Performance Series is produced and supported by organizations with nearly 50 years of experience providing student-focused event and travel logistics. Every program element is designed so that music professionals, parents, and performers can rest easy and students can focus on their main reason for being in Sydney – performing at their very best at the Sydney Opera House. Program elements include:

  • Airport shuttles and staff to greet and send off participants from assigned airport
  • All transportation during the program
  • Program staff experienced and trained in working with young participants
  • Accommodations in student-friendly hotels (safe areas, interior corridors, etc.)
  • Doctors on Call arrangement for medical support while on the program
  • 24-hour staffed emergency office to handle the unexpected
  • Extensive participant insurance while on the program

Through these many measures, the Series ensures that the program is a safe and positive experience for all involved.

What is included in the program cost?


The Honors Performance Series provides a hassle-free experience so that selected student performers can focus on their main reason for being in Sydney – performing at their very best at Sydney Opera House. The Series includes for all Finalists (tentative):

  • All rehearsal costs, including equipment and sheet music
  • All production cost and services for the Sydney Opera House performance
  • All fees for shown activities—including sightseeing, celebration, and other activities
  • Transportation for all activities during the program
  • Exposure to and learning from a world-class conductor for the program duration
  • Guides for activities outside the hotel (if desired) and program staff to assist participants in Sydney
  • Five nights lodging in a highly rated, centrally located hotel (quad occupancy) with staff onsite to ensure a good stay
  • A 24-hour staffed emergency office to handle the unexpected
  • Doctors on Call arrangement for around-the-clock access to a George Washington University Hospital doctor during the program
  • Extensive traveler insurance while on the program

Transportation to and from Sydney and meals are NOT included in the program; additional information about the option to participate in a group flight will be distributed to Finalists after acceptance. A set payment plan and need-based scholarships are available.


Is transportation included in the program?

All ground transportation, including shuttling between the designated airport and hotels once in Sydney, is included (for registered participants of the program only). Transportation to and from Sydney is the responsibility of each participant. Because this is a selective program, we encourage you to refrain from booking airline tickets or other travel arrangements until you have received both your acceptance and the specified arrival/departure times and locations.

Are meals included?

No, selected Finalists are responsible for purchasing their own meals during the program. We generally suggest Finalists plan to spend $30-50 USD per day on meals.

Are scholarships available?

The Honors Performance Series is dedicated to bringing together talented young performers around the world. Need-based partial scholarships are available to full-time student applicants, based upon family need. Please call us at +1 (800) 503-0807 for more information.

Where do participants stay?

For safety reasons, we do not share the name of our Honors hotel(s) except to accepted Finalists and the Responsible Parties listed on their accounts. All of our hotels are nationally recognized, and each hotel has been chosen for its cleanliness, hospitality, and safe location. Our hotels are student friendly and have been rated highly by musicians and families who have participated in our programs.

Do I get to choose my roommates?

Finalists are placed four-to-a-room with double beds in each room. In general, roommate selection is randomly assigned by gender. Meeting new people and making new friends is a key element of the Honors Performance Series, and roommates enhance the entire experience.

If a Finalist is traveling with a family member who has purchased a Full Access Family Program package, they may request to room together. Occupancy other than four-to-a-room requires a room surcharge. Please contact us if you would like more information about this option.

How can I reach a Finalist in case of emergency?


During the program, families may call our emergency office (this number will be shared with Finalists and their families before the program). We have staff on-call 24 hours a day who will be able to put you in touch with your Finalist in case of an emergency. Please also note that all Finalists wear a wristband indicating a toll-free number to our support staff in case of an emergency.

With further questions, please contact the Honors Performance Series at +1 (800) 503-0807.


Is there a code of conduct for Finalists?

To ensure a positive experience for all Finalists, participants are required to sign a behavior contract before participating in the Honors Performance Series. Finalists who do not follow these guidelines can be removed from the program and will be sent home at the family's expense.

Do you offer travel insurance?

Yes, t
he Program & Travel Protection Plan is an optional policy designed exclusively for Finalists and Family Program participants. This policy is offered to protect the investment of Finalists and their families. Complete details about the policy will be shared to selected Finalists with their acceptance materials.

Who do we make checks payable to?

Please make checks payable to the Honors Performance Series. For faster processing, checks should be mailed to the Honors Performance Series at P.O. Box 6276, Charlottesville, VA 22906-6275. Once received, checks sent to our New York address may take an additional 1-2 weeks to process.

How can I ask people to donate to my program fees?

Requesting donations is easy with our Gift of Performance e-cards. Those closest to you will enjoy their special e-greeting and the opportunity to be a part of your unforgettable experience!
Click here to send e-cards to all of your family and friends! Many Finalists have accumulated donations in excess of $1,500 through this fundraiser alone!

Being a part of these rehearsals showed me what it is like to be around people who know what they are doing and work for it. I cannot express enough how thankful I am.


Honors Performance Series

1359 Broadway, Suite 1504,
New York, NY 10018

The Honors Performance Series is proudly presented and operated by WorldStrides.

National Band Association
Premier Business Member

American Choral Directors Association Logo

National Association for Music Education Logo

  This site uses cookies to store information on your computer. Some are essential to make our site work; others help us improve the user experience. By using the site, you consent to the placement of these cookies. Read our Privacy Policy to learn more.