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Mastering the Art of the Audition

By: Shannon Czapla, Voice, Piano, Guitar & Ukulele Instructor

The art of auditioning, like any other skill, can be learned.

Whether you are auditioning for your dream college, a local band, or a musical, the formula for success is the same.

Try these tips at your next audition and watch your confidence skyrocket!

Practice, Practice, Practice!

The key element for feeling and looking excellent in any audition is something you would most certainly expect. Rehearse your audition piece thoroughly. Know your lines, lyrics, or music inside and out.

You should be able to have someone heavily distract you and still execute your piece. Being overly prepared often helps with feelings of anxiety over messing up your piece.

Choose an Appropriate Piece

Make sure you understand the material of your piece! Once you know it inside and out, make sure you understand the emotions so that you can execute a smooth delivery.

For example, if you are singing a sad song about a friendship ending, you would not want to sing it with a smile on your face, or with a bright timbre and happy sounding tone. Choose a piece that is appropriate for your age and understanding so that this is not overly difficult!

Picking the right piece also has a large impact on the outcome of an audition.


Dress for the Part

Dressing in something that I am comfortable in always helps me to perform at my best. Dressing up for an audition is better than dressing down, but make sure you feel like you’re accurately displaying yourself or your character.

This will help you feel and look more confident. It is also important to arrive early to leave room for any difficulties in finding the audition location or having time to calm down your nerves. Come prepared with things to calm you down and get you centered in a pinch.


Control Your Nerves

Nervousness is common, but taking deep breaths and focusing on your performance and confidence is more likely to produce a better product. Making lots of eye contact with the judges (even if you only look at their nose) will give the appearance of being confident and calm.

Body language makes a huge difference on perception and singing! Warm up, but don’t over-practice the night/morning before. Always remember to imagine yourself doing the piece well before you sleep, and that preparation leads to a near perfect performance. If you have put in the work, allow it to show in your performance and demeanor!

Breathing Exercises

Warming up your brain, body, and voice is another great way to prepare for a successful audition. This will allow you to feel more in control of your performance and allow your voice to jump throughout your range with ease.

Breathing exercises allow the body and the mind to connect before your performance, and is essential for singing or a long monologue. Working on breathing from all three areas (chest, ribs, and belly) is a great way to develop total breath control and feel at ease before the performance.

Learn From Each Audition

No matter how the audition goes, you learn more and more from each one you do! Listen conscientiously to critiques, noting what you can take to make you better in a way that aligns with the style you are interested in.

Being open to direction in the audition is vital because you never know when they might ask you to try something again. Most of all, trust in yourself!

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