Monday, 24 October 2011

Audition Tips 2

I would like to reinforce Richard Lewis' point about not playing a piece that you are struggling with. Play a piece that's within your grasp and try to regard the audition as a performance rather than an exam, we're looking for musicians so play a piece that you enjoy playing.

Practice your excerpts with a metronome (I'm presuming your teacher will have done this with you for your pieces)and practice them slowly at first then build up to the required tempo.

Use the time at the beginning of the audition to tune up carefully; the walk from the warm up room to the audition room along a cold, draughty corridor can play havoc with the pitch of your instrument, and when you're tuning play some notes with a full sound; it will give you a chance to get the feel of the room which could have quite a different accoustic to the warm up room.

Finally remember that we all want you to play at your best but we all understand that auditions can be nerve racking; don't be put off by the odd fluffed note, try to keep the music flowing and the duff note will soon be forgotten.

Steve Broom, Viola tutor

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Audition Tips - Part 1

Do some sight-reading every day until the audition, and in the audition sight-reading - keep going regardless!

Practice the last couple of times in the clothes you going to wear for the audition, so nothing feels weird or awkward on the day.

Finally, the panel is not there to eat you, we want you to play well! Try and feel that we are on your side, rather than we are there looking for faults.

Chris Stock, Percussion tutor

Always play a piece that you know well and that is within your capabilities. Difficult pieces performed poorly don’t impress.

Cello and bass players, make sure your spike is very sharp or bring along something to put on the floor to prevent your spike slipping.

Also, listen to a recording of the prepared excerpts. It makes a huge difference when performing them if you know how the music goes.

Finally, arrive in plenty of time and remember to bring all of your music, including photocopies for the panel!

Richard Lewis, Double Bass tutor

All aspects of the audition are important, but preparation of the set excerpts is vital, there are a lot of marks to be gained or lost depending on how you prepare these.

Scales and Arpeggios are also easy marks to pick up and again show the panel that you’re willing to put the time in to perfect the important building blocks of music.

Finally, some nerves are good and keep you on your toes, but some can be destructive. All of our tutors have been through many auditions themselves and so know what you’re going through. Try to relax – we’re not looking for mistakes, we want you to play to your best ability and controlling those nerves will help no end. Try some deep breathing exercises for the last few minutes before you audition time.

Matthew Jones, Youth Music Manager