Community Choir audition process - what's yours
Date: February 3, 2014
We are a community choir that sings mostly pop, rock, broadway, folk, jazz and sacred but typically not classical. The group has traditionally been auditioned. The prospective members attend a rehearsal, sing with the choir in the section in which they think they belong and then all auditionees together as a small choir would sing one of the songs rehearsed that night. A member of the choir from each section stays to provide support and sing along if there is only one person auditioning in the section. This way no one is left on their own to audition. The auditionees would then gather around the piano as the director worked them through some vocal excercises to get an idea of range and vocal quality. Lastly we would sing O Canada with one person starting solo and people taking over as soloist when the director pointed to a new person to see if people could maintain pitch.
We have a new director who doesn't care for this approach and would like to change the process. It's been changed to simply a voice placement test, however some of us are concerned that this doesn't tell if a person can follow a choral part. The old process wasn't perfect because when we were desperate for tenors and basses we allowed people in hoping they'd catch on to part singing but often they simply sang the melody in a different octave.
I'd be interested to hear what other community choirs are doing and what process you recommend.
County Town Singers
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