Upcoming audition for MM

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by josephus07, Feb 11, 2006.

  1. josephus07

    josephus07 Pianissimo User

    Feb 19, 2005
    Hi all,

    I've got my MM auditions (for my second master's, this time in performance) next weekend.

    I've been preparing for some time now and I've been listening a ton, planning out my phrases and musical gestures, practicing a lot, performing as much as I can, playing mock auditions for people, playing auditions after running up and down a flight of stairs (to simulate an elevated heart level), keeping track of all my playing, my sleeping habits, etc.

    It always seems that when I'm in a performance situation, I can really step up and rise to the occassion - except for the lessons I had with the teachers at one of the schools where I'll be auditioning. Because I didn't play great, I really want to show them a true representation of my playing at the audition.

    As I mentioned, I've been preparing as best as I can (especially with the time constraints of finishing up my master's thesis) and everything had been going really well until today.

    Today I did a "mock audition day"

    I warmed up early, waited 4.5 hours (to simulate traveling to the school, registering for auditions, taking placement tests, etc.)

    Gave myself 30 minutes of prep time (maybe too generous) to do a little bit of feel good playing and resting (flow studies, clark, starting all of my material) and then I peformed a mock audition for myself.

    I played horribly - my endurance was crap, and because I was doing whatever I could to get through my stuff, my musicality really suffered - and that it usually my strong point. My endurance, response, centering, it all suffered greatly too.

    I'm not sure if I freaked because I was tired or if I became tired because I was being ineffecient. It seemed like I was gripping my horn more tightly with my left hand and pressing it against my lips more. This happens more when my ring finger is in the 3rd slide ring instead of my middle finger (I've got big hands, it'll work with my middle finger in the ring).

    Anyway, I think I'm just venting because I'm excited to go back and play better and perform! Today just scared me because I thought I had taken care of being able to make it all the way through the audition - with chops to spare.

    If anyone wants to offer words of wisdom or advice, I'm all ears.

  2. Jimi Michiel

    Jimi Michiel Forte User

    Mar 22, 2005
    Hey buddy,
    So you walk away from performing, and now you've come crawling back! HA!!! (Not that I should talk).

    I'm no expert at taking auditions, but I did get some good advice from Charlie on relaxing before auditions. He told me to do breathing exercises right before I went in. Just take a look at your watch and breath in for 15 seconds, hold for 10, and breathe out for 15. More important than the actual exercise is that you are paying attention to your breathing. I've found that this makes me feel a little more relaxed and puts the focus on breathing, not the panel, tricky fingerings or the fear of failure. Hope this makes a little sense... I'm sure you'll do fine regardless. I've seen you prepare and you'll go into the audition ready to play at such a high level that if you F up you'll still be at a level that a lot of people can only get on their best days.


    PS. You coming out to Minnesota to audition?
  3. kitjacoby

    kitjacoby New Friend

    Jan 5, 2006
    Cornwall, England
    A good rehearsal usually makes for a bad performance.
    A bad rehearsal usually makes for a good performance.

  4. Clarence

    Clarence Mezzo Forte User

    Jun 23, 2005
    san diego
  5. josephus07

    josephus07 Pianissimo User

    Feb 19, 2005
    Thanks for the input guys.

    And Jimi, thanks for the kind words. It means a lot coming from you, as I respect you and your playing very much.

    No trips to MN, I'm just auditioning in the Cleveland area to be near my woman.

    Hey, I saw your post about next year's CSO concerts - if you go to any, let me know. We can have a two-front attack on the city, coming in from east and west :-) Being from Chicago, I know the best places for pizza, hot dogs, baseball (better than Fenway? :-) ) and, of course, ice cream.
  6. ecarroll

    ecarroll Artist in Residence Staff Member

    Jul 13, 2005

    Hard to say from afar, but I'd bet a dollar that your "mock" audition didn't go well because you were too busy monitoring how you were doing with it and not concentrating fully on making the music that you were playing come alive.

    Save judgement until after you've left the room. Make every moment of the music sing. If you concentrate fully on that there's no time for anything else.

    Good luck,

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