What are the best songs for audition

The right song for casting, audition or entrance examination

9 checkpoints for a successful audition

(Image: © Shutterstock, Annette Shaff)

Every singer comes into the situation of wanting to - or having to - sing. Be it for a casting show, for the backing job on tour, for a role in a musical or the entrance exam at a university. The choice of the right songs does not have a negligible effect on success. Putting your own voice in the best light is not that difficult if you pay attention to the following points.

1. Lighter songs are not always worse songs

The harder the song, the better? No! And again no! A song can only be so difficult for you that it retains the ease of "Alle meine Entchen" when auditioning. You still have to give yourself plenty of room to shine despite the rising stage fright.

"Hero" by Christina Aguilera is awesome when it comes to vocals and yet seems as light as a feather. But remember: This ease is the result of long practice and does not mean that the song is really as easy as it seems! When auditioning, you only have a chance with a song like this if you sing it at least (!) As well as she does. Can you do it? Really? Even if every tiny nuance of your singing is known? You have zero leeway. There is only hop or top. Do you really want to face this height of fall? And even if you do, you should consider whether you still have the option of adding something of your own to such a song.

Tip: Lower the challenge and raise the level of interpretation. Sing confidently. Look for songs whose range (range), tempo, groove, style and statement fit your voice so that you can convince across the board.

2. Don't always take the most popular songs

I've sat in juries a few times and found the following: If the same, probably just mega-hip song is sung for the fifth time, the jury members' attention mode slides into a state of absent boredom. Nobody really listens anymore. If so, the bar is damn high, as every little twist in the chant is known (see point 1).

Tip: Looks for songs that are not so much in focus in the collective memory. There are beautiful pearls that will make every jury heart (and hopefully your own) vibrate. Songs that can surprise and present you well. Lena Meyer-Landrut had a very lucky hand in 2010 when she, still completely unknown, appeared in Stefan Raab's casting show "Our Star for Oslo" and in the quarter-finals, among other things "Diamond Dave" from "The Bird and the Bee" sang. Lena got on and the song experienced quite a surge in popularity.

3. Analyze and emphasize your own strengths - hide your own weaknesses

Before you start choosing a specific song, think about the strengths and weaknesses of your singing. Feel free to ask others what they like about your singing. Be honest with yourself about the things that you are not so good at. Make a list. Then you check the songs that are shortlisted for you at these points. Do the songs feature your strengths? Do they hide your weaknesses? That's the whole trick. Many well-known singers are limited in their vocal possibilities. This is just not important at all, because you follow exactly this rule when selecting the songs or in your own songwriting. Use this knowledge for an audition.

Tip: If you don't have a singing lesson, take a single lesson and get feedback from a professional. The investment is always worthwhile!

4. Be brave: Reversed roles create interesting interpretations

Who actually says that women are only allowed to sing female songs and men are only allowed to sing male songs? "Gender crossing" can be pretty interesting. Surprising (in a positive sense) in any case. And once again Lena Meyer-Landrut: With Stefan Raab she also sang "New Shoes" by Paolo Nutini, "Mr. Curiosity" by Jason Mraz and "The Lovecats" by The Cure.

Tip: Also sings the most absurd songs of the opposite sex to unleash the extremes. Record yourself and see how they work with your singing and your style.

5. The song has to fit the casting occasion

Looking for a Cover band a new singer? Then a separate song for audition would be rather inappropriate. Asks about the band's repertoire. Remember: craft and stylistic vocal range count more in this situation than your own way of singing. Here handicraft comes before interpretation.

At a Musical production it behaves similarly. Find out what vocal demands are made of the role to be filled. If you are free to choose, choose songs that show exactly the vocal skills you need.

If you are on one Casting show want to take part, ask yourself when choosing a song how you want to be perceived by the jury and the audience. Choose the drawer, because afterwards casting shows unfortunately work, into which you want to be put carefully. If successful, it could cling to you longer than you would like. Don't sing singer / songwriter songs just because it's hip, if you're into energetic up-tempo numbers. Don't pretend!

6. Look for your own in the cover

Think about how much of your own you would like to have in your cover song. Do you want to sing like everyone else? Or wouldn't it be interesting to put something of your own into the interpretation of the song?

Tip: Listen to other singers and ask yourself what makes them unique. Try to develop your own style and, depending on the occasion of the audition (see point 5), take it with you into the song.

7. Being able to convey the message of the song through singing

It is very important that the emotions of the song suit you. Can you really "feel" the song? Can you connect with his statement? Nothing is worse than pretending. This fake is always noticed when auditioning. And that is very negative!

Tip: If the text is in another language, translate it into German. Write it down and read it carefully. Do you still stand behind the statement of every single sentence? Can you carry the message? In another language it is easier than in your own to block out inappropriate things and sing. Even so, it weakens the power of your expression.

8. Do your homework

Check them out key and find the one that makes your voice sound the best.

Check the company. Do you want to audition a capella, i.e. solo? Will you be accompanied? Then have the notes or the lead sheet ready in the appropriate key. Do you want yourselves accompany yourself? Then practice the instrumental part until you can reverse it.

Do you sing with playback? Then have the playback in the right key with you.

Memorize the songs as soon as possible! If you sing in a language other than your mother tongue, have a native speaker check and improve your pronunciation.

Tip: Always prepare one song too much! Nothing would be more embarrassing than a spontaneous "Do you have another song?" having to answer "no". A sovereign "Of course" creates bonus points.

9. Test your songs in front of an audience before you audition

The audition should definitely not be the first time to present your prepared songs to a public. Sing to your friends, your family, test the songs at a party. There are enough possibilities. Get feedback. Be careful about which songs are best received by your audience. The jury members also react like normal people. Pick the songs that your audience likes the most, not the ones you think are the most!

And last but not least: Also think about your outfit. Also present yourself optically, and of course, appropriate to the occasion, in the best light. Think about a performance that fits the song.

Then you are well prepared all around and I can only give you three times, spat over your shoulder, "toi, toi, toi" along the way. And you answer me after the audition: "Veni, vidi, vici" - I came, saw and won.

Your Catharina