Foyle Future Firsts

Our annual Foyle Future Firsts programme bridges the transition between education and the professional platform for outstanding early-career orchestral musicians. Applications are now open for 2024/25!

The programme is designed to nurture and develop talented orchestral players, forming the base for future appointments to the London Philharmonic Orchestra and other world-class orchestras and ensembles.

What we offer 

During your year as a Foyle Future First, you’ll have the opportunity to:

  • play alongside the professionals in London Philharmonic Orchestra rehearsals 
  • hone your technique through lessons with an LPO Principal player
  • benefit from invaluable advice and mentoring from your LPO Principal
  • perfect your audition skills 
  • watch LPO rehearsals and experience the behind-the-scenes preparation
  • take part in wider professional development sessions
  • develop your creative leadership skills on Education & Community projects
  • play side-by-side with LPO members in chamber performances at the Royal Festival Hall, and in our annual Debut Sounds concert featuring new works our LPO Young Composers 
  • enjoy free or discounted tickets for all LPO concerts at the Royal Festival Hall

How do I apply?

We are now welcoming applications for the LPO’s Foyle Future Firsts Development Programme 2024/25. Apply online via the Apply now links on this page.  The deadline for applications is 11.59pm on Tuesday 7 May 2024.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Applicants must play one of the following orchestral instruments: (1 place per instrument unless stated):
    Violin (2 places available), viola, cello, double bass, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn, trumpet, trombone or bass trombone, tuba, percussion including timpani, harp, piano.
    Note that applicants for percussion and timpani do not need to stipulate a specialism at the point of application – auditions will be undertaken in both disciplines combined.
  • Applicants must be UK-based musicians who have completed an undergraduate or postgraduate music performance degree or are able to perform to an equivalent standard.
    If you are at conservatoire/university in your final year and will have completed your undergraduate studies by September 2024 then you are eligible to apply.
  • Applicants without a music performance degree must submit a written reference from their instrumental teacher. The teacher reference form can be found here and must be submitted by the teacher by Tuesday 7 May 2024.
  • Applicants will need to have the right to work in the UK as a performer – a right to study visa is not applicable. Unfortunately, we are unable to sponsor visa applications.
  • Applicants must be able to support themselves financially and undertake other work and/or continued study alongside their Future First commitment. The programme is not a full-time course nor is it considered equivalent to employment by the Orchestra. A training bursary of £1000 is provided to each participant (half paid at the start of the year and the balance paid at the end, contingent on full participation in FFF activity).

Please read the Information for Applicants before starting your online application.


If your online application is successful, you will be invited to a live audition in central London. Foyle Future First auditions dates are given below. If you apply for the scheme please make sure you are available on the required audition date. Unfortunately, there is no flexibility to offer multiple dates or reschedule auditions.

  • Flute – Tuesday 2 July
  • Oboe – Friday 21 June
  • Clarinet – Thursday 20 June
  • Bassoon – Wednesday 19 June
  • Horn – Tuesday 23 July
  • Trumpet – Monday 12 August
  • Trombone – Wednesday 24 July
  • Tuba – Monday 1 July
  • Percussion including Timpani – Wednesday 3 July
  • Harp – Thursday 8 August
  • Piano – Thursday 8 August
  • Violin – Tuesday 13 August
  • Viola – Friday 16 August
  • Cello – Friday 16 August
  • Double Bass – Friday 21 June

If you are invited to audition, you will be sent an audition pack including information about the pieces and orchestral excerpts to prepare. You will need to bring your own copy of this to the audition.  We will provide an accompanist where required. After the audition, you will be contacted if you have been offered a place on the Foyle Future Firsts programme, or if you have not been successful. Audition candidates may request brief feedback on their auditions by a given deadline.

If you have not heard from us by the end of May with an invitation to audition, then your application has not been successful. We regret that we cannot contact all unsuccessful candidates at the application form stage, nor offer feedback at this stage of the application process.

Apply Now

Information for Applicants

Teacher Reference Form

The deadline for applications is 11.59pm on Tuesday 7 May 2024. Please ensure that your application is fully completed. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

If you have any queries regarding your application or about the programme please contact Lowri Davies, Education and Community Project Manager, on 020 7840 4203 or email [email protected]

Applications are open

Application deadline: Tuesday 7 May 2024, 23:59pm

Apply now Arrow

Find out more about the Foyle Future First programme:

Foyle Future Firsts 2023/24

We are working with the following talented musicians during the 2023/24 season:

  • Coco Inman – violin
  • Camille Buitenhuis – violin
  • Teresa Ferreira – viola
  • Sam Weinstein – cello
  • Phoebe Cheng – double bass
  • Maria Filippova – flute
  • Jack Tostevin-Hall – oboe
  • Bethany Crouch – clarinet
  • Lucy Gibson – bassoon
  • Zachary Hayward – horn
  • Joseph Skypala – trumpet
  • Rhodri Thomas – trombone
  • Connor Gingell – tuba
  • Evi Wang – piano
  • Anwen Thomas – harp
  • Tom Plumridge – percussion

Foyle Future Firsts 2023/24

What our Foyle Future Firsts say:

I felt welcome and valued, it was a perfect environment to learn and thrive. I thoroughly enjoy the year and every moment in the FFF programme!

Foyle Future First 2022/23

It’s given me a huge foothold in this industry and really helped me to become a confident orchestral musician.

Foyle Future First 2021/22

It’s really given me an insight of what it’s like to have a job in an orchestra which is an invaluable experience. I’ve loved the way that the LPO players value the Future Firsts and how welcoming they’ve been.

Foyle Future First 2021/22

Contact us

If you have any questions please contact Lowri Davies, Education & Community Project Manager on 020 7840 4203 or [email protected]

Email us:

[email protected]

The Foyle Future Firsts Development Programme 2023/24 is generously funded by the Foyle Foundation with additional support from the Barbara Whatmore Charitable Trust, the Idlewild Trust and the Golsoncott Foundation.

Sign up to our mailing list

Sign up Arrow