Audition Tips for Young Singers

Rebecca Downs
Submitted: Thu, September 27, 2018 - 9:09pm EDT
Telling you to be prepared can seem like a really obvious thing to say, and not feel like much of an #auditiontip. But its remarkable how many singers don't take the trouble or thought to make sure that they know what’s expected of them at an audition.

Audition like a pro. Sometimes we get so nervous we forget to ask the basics - like even where the audition is, or what the part is, if there are sides available or song styles we should keep in mind or any other clues that will make your job easier. So before you even get the audition, ask as many questions as you can so nothing is left to chance. In fact, here is a short easy checklist of "audition prep do's" that will keep you ready to audition any time.

1 - Show up for your audition early and arrive prepared to sing or read, straight away. And always, always have an extra song ready that you just love to sing, just in case they want something else.  

2 - WARM UP. If you haven’t sung in a while, you can’t expect to go into any singing audition and perform well. Singing every day is essential for keeping your voice healthy and strong. Always warm up before the audition at home, or in the car, so that you are ready to sing when you need to. Give yourself 45 minutes for this pre-audition warmup. Yes, it is just as important as your hair or makeup

3 - Know the #Show. In musical theatre, there’s no excuse for not being familiar with the show you’re auditioning for. When preparing your audition material never sing something from the show you’re auditioning for, unless you’re specifically asked to. On the other hand, choose a song that’s similar in style and range to the character you’re auditioning for.

4 - Know your AuditionSong. Know everything - your lyrics, the tune, the chord changes, where you enter after the music starts and how to read your music at least enough so you can show the #accompanist whatever you need to in order to make the audition go smoothly. Know your stuff really, really well.

5 - Choose an audition piece that suits you. In the crush of "shoulds" young singers worry about when you look for audition material, you often forget that your first task is to show the auditors how great you are. So sing stuff you do really well. Choose material that suits your #voice and your personality. 

6- Give yourself plenty of time to learn your #auditionmaterial. You need to get the song into your voice. You need to get the lyrics so down you can say them in your sleep. All of this takes both practice and time. 7 - If you make a mistake do not stop! An audition is like a #performance; just keep going and do not let your face or body language reveal the fact that you’ve made a mistake. 

8 - DO NOT sing a Capella, I don't care how great your ear is. Never, unless it is specifically requested by someone sober and without a grudge against you.

9 - DO NOT choose a song that’s difficult for a pianist to play. You have absolutely no idea what the ability of the audition pianist is at any given audition. The person is #sight-reading. Better they have every advantage so that the make you look better. 

9 - Up your sheet music game. Make sure it’s written out in the correct key, and that any tempo changes, and change in musical directions are all clearly marked. Make sure you are totally familiar with them. 

10 - Prepare sheet music for the accompanist. The last thing you need is for your accompianist to have trouble with the music. Zerox the song, and tape the edges of each page together accordion fashion.

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