Friday, November 18, 2016

Picking a Song for an Audition

Selecting the right song for an audition can greatly increase your chances of winning an audition. Whether you plan to audition for a popular jazz or rock band or an opera, you need to know what the group listening to you considers appropriate music. Personal preference plays a small role in the selection of music, but ultimately, you should play to the tastes and requirements of the group holding the audition. Some preparatory work and research makes it possible to select an appropriate song.

The Ensemble

Learn about the ensemble holding the audition. Determine the style of music and what role you will perform. For example, a group that hires Broadway singers will want to hear music from Broadway.

Range and Capabilities

Assess your range and capabilities. The song you select is one of the few parts of an audition you have control over. Select a song that shows off your range and capabilities in a flattering way. Don’t choose a technical piece if you sing best with lyrical songs. If you have a high range, select a piece that demonstrates that range.


Prepare a song you can sing from memory. Memorize the song well in advance to reduce the possibility of forgetting your words in the middle of the piece. If you have trouble memorizing songs, don’t pick a song that is overly complicated. Select a piece that has repetitive phrases to minimize the amount of memorization you must complete.

Difficulty Level

Select a song that is difficult enough for you to show off your expertise and minimize any weaknesses, but not so difficult that you are prone to making a mistake in the audition. Remember that the judges expect you to have this piece well rehearsed. If you have a song that shows off your high range, but exposes a weaker low range, consider another song.

Practicing the Song

When you practice your song, start slowly and aim to avoid making mistakes. If you make a mistake, slow down and perform it five times correctly without making a mistake. The brain doesn’t differentiate between a mistake and the intended outcome very well, so you should aim to perform the piece correctly every time no matter how slow you take the piece.

Making a mistake could make the judges lose confidence in your ability. However, if you keep singing and don’t get flustered by your mistake, it will show that you have competent performance skills. Look through several pieces before making a final decision.

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