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Audition Process

Timing

Auditions are typically held twice a year in late August and January. The Artistic Director sets audition dates in conversation with the Accompanist.

Scheduling and Preparing for Auditions

Membership Committee is responsible to:

  • Promote auditions within the membership.
  • Call all current and on-leave singers to find out whether they are returning to chorus and confirm their contact information for the new roster. This information is needed so that the Artistic Director knows how many spaces are open in each section. A complete list of returning and on-leave should be forwarded to the Chorus Administrator at least a day before the first audition.
  • Staff a welcome table (include past concert programs, photos, brochure, copies of information already sent to them, DVDs or recordings of past concerts, list of music for the upcoming season, attendance policy, etc.).
  • Between 24-48 hours before the first audition, Membership Committee reps place a reminder call to all audionees and give them the Chorus phone number to call in case of a change of plans. During auditions Operations Manager should occasionally check messages on the Chorus Hotline for these updates.

The Chorus Administrator is responsible to:

  • Call individuals from audition list and assign times in 10-minute slots leaving a short break each hour (5 auditionees in an hour).
  • Give auditionees basic information about the chorus and auditions. We don't want to overwhelm auditionees but do want to make sure they have the basic information in written and verbal form. Ask them to
    1. prepare a piece of music to perform for the audition and clarify that an accompanist will be available.
    2. clarify that we rehearse on Monday nights
    3. general attendance requirements.
  • 24-48 hours before the first audition the Chorus Administrator will review the schedule and try to re-assign audition slots to fill in any large gaps but still to allow breaks for staff approximately every hour.
  • Once an audionee is scheduled e-mail the audition packet to them with a cover letter if they have not already received it.
  • Call individuals from audition list and assign times in 10-minute slots leaving a short break each hour (5 auditionees in an hour).

Audition Procedure

Auditions include a 10 minute singing audition with the Artistic Director and a 5-10 minute interview or orientation with the Membership Committee. The interview is a time to review the written information about Chorus and answer any questions the auditionee may have about the chorus. The interview should be informative but keep it as light and upbeat as possible so we don't scare folks away. Membership Committee is also responsible to:

  • Prepare signs to hang on the church doors so that auditionees know which door to enter.
  • Interact with auditionees to find out their past choral experience, volunteer interests, skills, etc.
  • Review auditioners' forms for completeness and legibility. We OFTEN have a hard time tracking down new audionees
  • The Artistic Director auditions potential singers incorporating exercises that test tonal memory, range, delivery and resonance, ability to hold a part alone, and sight-reading skills. The Artistic Director makes the final decision with a primary focus on the auditionee's
  • ability to match pitch and blend with other singers
  • ability to carry a part
  • current open spaces in a voice section

Membership Committee Greeters!

Auditions include a 10 minute singing audition with the Artistic Director and a 5-10 minute interview or orientation with one of the Membership Committee. The interview is a time to review the written information about Chorus and answer any questions the auditionee may have about the chorus. The interview should be informative but keep it as light and upbeat as possible so we don't scare folks away.

Audition interviews:

  • Rehearsals on Monday nights, 7 – 9:30 pm. Clarify when rehearsals start.
  • Describe theme and content for upcoming season
  • Talk through season calendar, point out Saturday rehearsals and describe what happens at those events.
  • Clarify concert dates
  • Dues
  • Attendance Policy
  • Briefly describe the structure of the chorus as a non-profit organization. Let auditionees know that there are lots of ways to become involved besides singing (choreography, organizing, joining a committee, ensembles, solos, etc)
  • Informally find out about each auditionee and take notes. Where do they work? What do they enjoy doing? Where do they volunteer? This is the kind of information that will be helpful in plugging them into volunteer work in the next year.

Audition Follow-up

Artistic Director

  1. Call all auditioners re. whether they're in (or out).
  2. Send results to Chorus Administrator for database report, to librarian for music packets, to Membership Committee for welcome calls.

Chorus Administrator

  1. Compile the information from audition applications and add to the database.
  2. Create an initial roster of new singers to forward to Membership Committee.

Membership Committee

  1. Welcome calls to each new singer in section (and returning if on leave or if it is the fall season). Invite them to attend an orientation session 30 minutes before the start of the first rehearsal.
  2. Get final audition results to CA for database (who didn't show, contact info updates, etc).

Checklist for Auditions

What Who When
Set audition months AD summer
Set exact audition dates AD summer
Secure space AD summer
Advertise auditions in media Marketing 6 weeks prior
Advertise auditions in concert programs AD Ongoing
Update audition letter and info AD One month prior to auditions
Post info to website Marketing One month prior to auditions
Check with on-leave members re. return Membership One month prior to auditions
Confirm singer addresses for next roster Membership One month prior to auditions
Collect audition names CA Ongoing
Enter names in database CA Ongoing
Set up audition hotline CA One month prior to auditions
Monitor hotline Membership Ongoing
Send audition names to Membership Committee CA One month prior to auditions
Advertise auditions in newsletter/announce Membership 2-3 weeks before auditions
Mail out letter and info Membership 2-3 wks prior to auditions
Call/email auditionees/schedule time Membership 2 wks prior to auditions
Review Revise Member Handbook CA 2-3 wks before new season
Revise & print auditionee interest form CA 1 wks prior to auditions

Checklist for Audition Night

What Who Notes
Make sure sanctuary heat is on and door unlocked. CA  
Place welcome signs at least 20 min before first audition Membership Sign for outside door and inside hallway leading to rehearsal hall
Make sure door is unlocked and light is on Membership at least 20 min before first audition
Cue up chorus promo video and make sure it is played throughout evening Membership  
Prepare simple Chorus display and info table CA Past 2-3 concert programs
Last two newsletters
Recent chorus reviews or articles
Season calendar
Singer application
A couple copies of the audition info page.
Put out refreshments: Membership Pot of hot water
Tea basket
Donuts or treats
Water
Prepare name-tags for greeters Membership  
Review auditionee forms to make sure you can read all the info!! Membership  
Print out a current list of returning singers for AD CA By Voice part
Assign Membership Committee members to bring treats CA