Composer: Fred Silver

Top Ten Tips from a Composer: Fred Silver

Fred Silver

1. If you are using their accompanist, make sure you explain:

What you will be singing. Where to start. Beat out the tempo you want.

Most importantly: tell them not to play anything until you give them a nod. If you brought a CD to sing to; ask them to wait for a nod before they start to play it. No one wants to be rushed into a performance they are not ready to give.

2. Rehease how you walk into a room.

If you rush in, it looks like you're too eager for a job. Practice walking in so you 'wow' them - you're happy to be there. Eye contact is allowed while you are talking to them or they to you.


They are not your acting partner. A song is a scene between you and an acting partner, invisible to them, but real to you. They are voyeurs allowed to look at you. You gave them permission to do that by coming to the audition. If you look at them they will look away.

4. When you are finished, look down briefly and then stand there until they dismiss you.

I've seen more people lose out on a call back, or being asked to read or sing another selection by dismissing themselves.

5. When they do dismiss you, remember to say "thank you for allowing me to audition for you" and mean it.

Gratitude goes a long way. You may be called by one of them to audition for something else later on. "Thank yous" are always welcomed.

6. Keep a journal.

Remember to jot down what you are wearing and what you sang. That is how they will remember you at a call back. Don't change your hair style unless they request something different of you.

7. "Accordion" your music, by scotch taping each page to the next.

That way it won't fall off the music stand of the piano. Binders are not the answer. It is too difficult to turn pages. When you accordion the music, the pianist can see three or more pages at a time.

8. Protect yourself.

If you have a song that works for you, don't photocopy it for a friend. If you do, then everyone will be singing it.

9. Make backups of all your music, so if you leave it somewhere you can still make more copies.

10. Don't talk to anyone, even people you know, who are also waiting to audition.

Imagine yourself performing the number as you want it to go, and it will. Gossiping will only distract you from the reason you came to audition.

Fred SilverAuthor of Auditioning for the Musical Theatre.

He also wrote the Audition Doctor column for Back Stage for many years. He has trained nearly every Broadway Star since he started coaching in New York City. He now lives in Boca Raton, Florida and teaches privately there.