The start of the year means a lot to many, setting New Years resolutions, looking for a change in themselves within the New Year, but for many, between the end of January to midway through March is audition season—either for music, acting and dancing, or a sports team, auditions can be nerve-racking. I am going to college for music performance, so for me and all the other seniors going into performing arts, the past month has been skewed with college auditions. Having my last one last week now, I think I’ve learned a few things. Here’s my tips to nailing any audition.
Be prepared. Seems simple right? But within this simple task is one thing, hard work. Either preparing pieces and excerpts to play, finding monologues and cutting to perform, or working out, auditions come with a lot of preparing. And I’ve learned that it is never to early to start, don’t, procrastinate things, saying to yourself that “you have plenty of time”, because that audition date will come soon than you think.
Before audition day, prepare yourself. I found myself the night before (or even the day of) an audition trying to perfect my pieces, but this was extraneous. In the 24 period before an audition, you can’t change much. That can sound pretty hopeless, but I find it re ensuring. You’ve done all you could do, and if you can demonstrate that hard work in the audition, whoever is audition you will see that, so the night before, focus on you. Go to bed early, eat breakfast for once, bring water and keep yourself hydrated. Get yourself at the peak of your performance, I went into a practice room at all my auditions and played scales and method book exercises till I felt I warmed up. Do whatever makes you perform you best.
Don’t compare yourself to others. At the high school level of auditions, the people auditioning you aren’t looking for perfection, they are looking for potential, so never go in looking at the others auditioning. They could be playing something harder than you, act better than you, or are able to play better than you, but that is not the only thing deciding who gets into something. They want to see potential in you, so don’t worry about what the other guy is doing. My private lesson teacher put it the best, saying you have a job to get done, and just focus on that.
Center yourself, focus, and just go for it. It’s easy in an audition to think what are others thinking on you, but that will only make you perform worse. Focusing on the task at hand will do you much better than thinking about the judgements of the people listening or watching you. We also find ourselves trying to play it safe in auditions. Either not playing a difficult shift, not ‘overacting’ a part, or not going for harder shots, this seems safe in our minds, but might lead to the people auditioning you not to see your full potential.
Make it a positive experience. So you just got out of the audition, make it positive. Do what makes you happy, it could even be the smallest thing. For me, it was going to Chipotle. It could be playing a video game, hanging out with friends, or anything else. Doing this makes the audition experience a positive one in your head, making future auditions not as bad.
And finally, don’t focus on the result. It’s easy to get into a box of negativity, thinking the audition went horribly, and there is no way your going to make it, but that thinking isn’t going to help anybody. Some more advice from my private teacher, who said, “it’s never as good or as bad as you think it is.” Just keep in mind that you did your best, and no matter what happens, you still had the talent you had before, and should never let an audition deter you from doing what you love.