Advice needed on audition excerpts?
I just found out my college orchestra auditions are in the first week (quite soon) and I don't have a teacher yet & haven't had a lesson for 2 months for various reasons. Therefore I will be preparing for this on my own (possibly with one or two lessons towards the very end of the process).
I really want to get into the orchestra, and seeing as a lot of members here are very experienced with this side of things, I was wondering if you would be so kind as to share some of your tips for preparing excerpts?
I have already been told to look at the full score, listen to the pieces, and make sure to stay in time - all fairly obvious.
Thank you in advance :)
P.S. I don't expect you to give specific advice but in case anyone is interested, or if it's relevant, the excerpts are from the following pieces:
- Debussy's La Mer
- Tchaik symph 5
- Shostakovich symph 5
- Haydn symph op. 100
Take your time to learn these slowly at first even though you feel that time is short. You're much better off playing in tune and perhaps slightly under tempo than you are playing way out of tune at tempo.
Thank you, that seems like great advice!
A couple of weeks for Debussy and Shostakovich and you haven't had any lessons for two months?
Thanks for your insight, it really helped me prepare!
Definitely metronome, learn it slowly. You'll waste a lot less time if you learn it right instead of having to go back and fix mistakes. Your first priority should be the basics of good playing - good sound, good rhythm, good intonation. Remember that you're playing music and make it sound like something you would want to listen to.
That makes sense. Thanks for the advice and the good way of thinking about excerpts.
Are you polishing excerpts that you've recently studied, getting excerpts that you already know back into your fingers, or learning these excerpts for the first time for this audition?
I am learning these for the first time, despite how common they seem to be for orch auditions.
It's a conservatory, so I don't think it'd fly, although that's a good tip for less competitive situations.
If you really put a lot of work into two of those excerpts, I'd focus on the Debussy and the Shostakovich, simply because you will undoubtedly see those two over and over again in the years to come -- assuming they've chosen the usual excerpts from those, anyway.
They're also the hardest, IMO.