By GALA Expert
September 27, 2023
Some GALA choruses are open to any community member without any audition process. Others have some kind of audition requirement. The decision to audition or not is one that both the board and artistic director need to make based on the mission and focus of the chorus.
The audition space should include a comfortable space where new auditionees are greeted by current singers, can peruse concert programs, watch a concert video and get excited about singing in your chorus. Make sure that new auditionees know your chorus requirements in advance (rehearsal expectations, calendar, attendance requirements), and fill out an audition form when they arrive.
The singing audition should be in a private rehearsal space with a strong accompanist. Create a document that offers a standard ranking system including color, intonation, sight-singing, ability, and blend at a minimum (sample below). After hearing several dozen voices it is amazing how little detail you may retain about each voice! Some choirs are blessed with the problem of having to say no to singers for a variety of reasons. Perhaps there are too many singers in one section and the chorus needs to be vocally balanced. Perhaps if the chorus gets any larger they won’t fit onto your risers or into the performing venue. Here are some options:
- Limit types of members you are letting in – only audition for low basses and first sopranos.
- Have a “reserve” list of singers who have passed the audition who are next in line to get into the chorus when space opens up
- Audition fewer times during the year
- Mandate that ALL singers audition each year or every two years
- Cap the membership and stay within this limit.