The Audition Process

Hannah Palmer and Bella Gentile

You are waiting backstage, palms sweating, heart pounding. You go over your song lyrics again and again in your head, and you can hear the girl, who was waiting in line before you, belting in the next room. You can physically feel your stomach twisting into knots as you think about your number being called. The music stops. There’s silence. You start nibbling at your nails and your stomach is lurching at this point. The doors open, and the girl walks out without a trace of emotion on her face. You’re about to ask her how it went when you hear your number being called. You stand up and walk into the dark room to the single spotlight in the middle of the floor. The lights blind you, you can’t see anything in front of you, and you can only hear the voices whispering in front of you. It’s time for your audition.

Auditioning might just be one of the most nerve-racking things in the entire world. Whether it be for sports teams, movies, or in this case, musicals. Our own Davis High School’s West Side Story auditions were held September 2-4. Nearly 150 students showed up to try out and 93 were cast.

Different musicals have different audition requirements. For West Side Story, director Meghan Bucher asked the students to have a 30 second musical theater song prepared in the style of Bernstein.

“They had to go find something that would help portray their vocal style in the parts that they were seeking.” said Bucher.

Some of our school’s theater regulars auditioned and made it this year. They are no strangers to the musical theater world. Collin Matthews told us what his tips and tricks are for overcoming the nerves, which are completely unavoidable when you are placed on a stage and asked to show off your skill.

“Make sure you’re prepared for your audition, and just have fun with it!” said Matthews.

So once you’ve calmed those nerves, it’s only a matter of impressing the director. This can be very hard, and some directors are scarier than others..

“I thought she was pretty cool. Yeah, she actually got up and interacted with a bunch of us, and we played a couple of games, it was pretty fun!” said Bryson Williams about his audition.

The auditioning students this year all claimed to have felt pretty comfortable around Bucher, and the majority of those who tried out made it. So what did they have that the others didn’t? What does it take to impress a director?

“Song choice is really important. You want to make sure you have something that really highlights yourself, but also highlights yourself in the role you’re seeking,” said Bucher.

So there you have it. If you didn’t audition this year, now you have some information on how to prepare for next year. Come see West Side Story at Davis High, starting this Fall.