How Does NYIOP Work?

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Here are some clear answers to questions you might have about how NYIOP Auditions function. If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact David Blackburn at
We look forward to hosting you at a NYIOP in the future – somewhere in the world!

What to expect at a NYIOP Audition?

When you arrive at a NYIOP Session anywhere in the world, you will be joined by a number of colleagues from all over the world to share the time at the auditions as well as representatives from NYIOP – usually David  Blackburn. Each session in the USA will have about 6-8 theaters present. At the NYIOP Preview Auditions, which happen the first two days of each USA session, there will also be representatives from local agencies present.

During the auditions, NYIOP will handle all aspects of the scheduling and operations of the auditions so that you have the freedom to concentrate only on the singers presented.

The auditions will run like any other normal audition – the singers will present their first piece and the panel will together choose any subsequent pieces that we hear.

After the auditions are over, the singers or agencies might contact you for feedback or to see if you have interest in their singers. We encourage you to give feedback as you can but do not handle this information in any way.

In addition, NYIOP is not an agency in any way. We do not negotiate for or manage artists in any way. We are happy to help facilitate contact with anyone but we do not take any commission on any singer hired from the
NYIOP auditions.

What does NYIOP provide for those who attend a session?

New York City and Other US Sessions

When you are confirmed to attend a NYC or other USA session, NYIOP will provide each international theater with a travel stipend that will help to offset the costs of attending the auditions. All domestic theaters that choose to attend a USA NYIOP session will also be given a smaller
stipend to help cover the costs.

For those attending the sessions in NYC, we do not make the travel arrangements for those theaters who choose to attend however we are happy to help with recommendations for those who are perhaps unfamiliar with the area. For those attending the auditions in other US cities, we will arrange for the accommodations in that city and make the reservations for the attending theaters. In some cases we will cover the cost of the accommodation and change the travel stipend accordingly. These arrangements will be made for each non-NYC session and communicated clearly in our confirmation email.

European Sessions

For large European project that takes place each summer in June, NYIOP only covers the costs of a set number of North American theaters that come to Europe to attend. However, all theaters that wish to attend are welcome to take part.  Even though we do not cover costs for all theaters that attend, we do arrange for hotel accommodations for all theaters that wish to stay in our negotiated hotel. If you plan to attend and need to take advantage of our discounted rates please simply tell us when you confirm attendance.

What does NYIOP expect of the theaters who attend? (THIS IS THE NEW PART)

  • Attend All the Auditions

    You must be present for all auditions presented during a given session.  We understand emergencies do happen in the theater world and of course we are understanding in these cases, but please do not schedule meetings or other engagements during the scheduled audition times.
  • Hear ONLY the Singers We Present

    You agree to not hear any other auditions in NYC (or the hosting city) during the period of our auditions and additionally for two weeks before or two weeks after our session.  If you need to hear specific people, either send us their name and contact info and we will arrange for them to sing for you or request that they contact us directly using your name.  (This also means there will no longer be outside auditions held on the lunch break.)

    This is a simply an exclusivity clause like most of you have in many of your contracts with artists.  We have had, sadly, a number of problems with this in the past where a colleague arrives to hear our auditions and allows themselves to be pulled into outside auditions as our cost. Therefore, we must enforce this from this season forward.

  • Provide Us Short Feedback “Tweets”

    Beginning with the 2011-12 season, we will require that each member of the NYIOP Preview Panel as well as the Final Audition panel provide us with a simple, one-line feedback for each singer you hear.  This will be more or less in the same form as a Twitter post – one short sentence.  This feedback will be provided to the singer and WILL NOT have your name attached, unless you choose to list your name yourself.  This is important for the artists and we hope this will lessen the number of feedback emails you receive once you return home.
  • Provide Us Contact Information for the Artists

    We ask that you provide us an email address that we can pass to the artists and agencies participating in the auditions.  This does not have to be your personal email address, but it does need to be an address where someone will actually answer in some form
  • Reimbursement on the Last Day

    We will reimburse your stipend in local currency on the afternoon of the last day of the audition session.  There will be no exceptions to this either. If you would prefer to not have this amount in local currency so close to departure, we are happy to make a bank transfer directly to your account on the day after the audition session ends.  Sadly, this has also come about as a result of some colleagues asking for the stipend ahead of the auditions and then not actually attending all of the session in good faith.
  • Don’t Take Advantage

    We reserve the right to withhold all or part of your stipend if we find that you have heard outside auditions or not attended all of our session in good faith (or do anything else particularly nasty to us! :-)).
  • Make Offers! (if possible!)

    We would ideally like that you give an unofficial commitment to try in best efforts to hire at least one person per session you attend.  We completely understand that you can not hire someone if you do not find a need filled or an artist of the type you desire – however, the continued success of this project depends on artists being hired.  Without this commitment from you, we will slowly cease to exist and the quality of the singers you hear will continually be worse each passing year.  Help our quality rise and keep rising – Make Offers!

You are NOT required to offer contracts as a stipulation of attending a NYIOP audition. Of course, we hope that you find several singers in each session that you wish to engage either immediately or in the future, but you are not required to offer contracts.

How do I confirm I would like to attend a NYIOP for my theater?

For each session we hold there is a strict limit in the number of theaters we can provide with a stipend. If you wish to attend a session, look on the session dates as listed and write David Blackburn at as soon as you can confirm you would like to attend. Once confirmed into a session, please notify us immediately if you cannot come as you are holding a space that perhaps another theater
would like to take.