Festival of Choral Music

Activities for this program currently have to adhere to current DoE COVID-19 restrictions. 

Link to Department of Education latest information on COVID-19.

The commencement of the 2021 Festival of Choral Music will be contingent on advice provided by the NSW Department of Education in consultation with NSW Health.


The NSW Department of Education will present six choral concerts in the Centennial Hall of the Sydney Town Hall.  Schools must submit an audition application via YouTube of choirs of up to 36 students (Stage 2 and/or Stage 3 in 2020 only) capable of singing in two parts to be part of a combined choir.  Successful schools are accepted for one performance only.

2020 Concert Dates at the Sydney Town Hall - ALL CANCELLED

singers in the opera house

Argyle Concert: Thursday 20 August 2020, 7 pm
Australis Concert: Friday 21 August 2020, 7 pm 
Barangaroo Concert: Monday 14 September 2020, 7 pm
Bennelong Concert: Tuesday 15 September 2020, 7 pm                        Endeavour Concert: Wednesday 16 September 2020, 7 pm          Garrigarrang Concert: Thursday 17 September 2020, 7 pm


Combined Choir (maximum 36 students) 


COST:                                                                                                                                                                  It is anticipated that a non-refundable participation fee of $30.00+gst per student will be payable upon acceptance into the program.                                                                                                                                                          

One teacher from each accepted school MUST attend the Festival of Choral Music Teachers' Workshop at the Conservatorium of Music on Friday 14 February 2020.  All NSW public schools will have access to comprehensive teacher professional learning. Teachers may opt to attend only the professional learning component of the program.

*As part of The Arts Unit's support of the Department of Education's Rural and Remote Education blueprint for action, we are excited to be able to offer a Participation Subsidy of $22.50+gst, a discount of 25% to students from rural and remote schools to participate in the Festival of Choral Music. Please note: If interest exceeds available funds, allocation of the subsidy will be prioritised on remoteness. Subsidies will be confirmed with acceptance notification.

Video audition Tips

Information for uploading video audition to YouTube

2020 Festival of Choral Music (Metropolitan) Preliminary Rehearsals at the Salvation Army Congress Hall

Argyle Concert: Monday 3 August 2020 9:30 am – 1:00 pm
Australis Concert: Monday 3 August 2020 9:30 am – 1:00 pm or Tuesday 4 August 2020 9:30 am - 1:00 pm
Barangaroo Concert: Tuesday 4 August 2020 9:30 am – 1:00 pm                                                                    Bennelong Concert: Wednesday 5 August 2020 9:30 am – 1:00 pm                                                                        Endeavour Concert: Wednesday 5 August 2020 9:30 am – 1:00 pm or Thursday 6 August 2020 9:30 am - 1:00 pm
Garrigarrang Concert: Thursday 6 August 2020 9:30 am – 1:00 pm

The 2020 Festival of Choral Music Information Book (PDF) will be available in February 2020. 

The 2020 Repertoire

The 2020 repertoire includes songs carefully selected from a variety of genres including traditional, folk and musical theatre arranged for unison and 2 part singing. 

Applications for Instrumental and Vocal Items have been suspended until further notice.

All primary and secondary schools are encouraged to submit outstanding music groups or soloists for inclusion in Music Festivals. The item(s) may be vocal or instrumental, small or large - e.g. a soloist, string quartet, concert band, percussion ensemble or vocal group.

For further information concerning the 2020 Festival of Choral Music please contact Ian Jefferson, Student Music Programs Officer (K-8) at The Arts Unit - email concerts.artsunit@det.nsw.edu.au