A Guide to the College Audition Process

by Michael Reedy

Congratulations, you are finally a senior in high school, isn't it great?!?!?! Try not so much for the many of us who are suffering from the ridiculous amount of stress that comes along with the thought of the words: COLLEGE AUDITIONS.  Questions running through your head like what solo should I do? What excerpts? What if I don't like the school? What if I don't like the teacher? What if the teacher doesn't like me??? These are the same questions that every senior thinks of before the actual audition and I am here to tell you that although I am not an expert, I am in the same boat. Over the next couple months, I will be doing a journal-like approach to this article with different topics and tips to make your senior year less hectic while using me and my experiences as the guinea pig.

{mfcorner reedy.jpg|Michael Reedy|left}First let's get a little more acquainted, my name is Michael Reedy and I am going to be a senior at Blake High School for the Arts in Tampa, Fl.  I have played horn for the last six years and have studied privately for the last five with Robert Schoos( Principal, Florida Wind Band) and Gene Berger( Principal, Southwest Florida Symphony; Asst. Principal, Cincinnati Symphony). I have been on the top of youth orchestras, honor bands, and everything at my school but yet the fear of not being good enough still consumes me and many of you. How do we fix it? With the combination of organization, and the help and advice of each other, everyone will be capable of preparing a solid audition.  So....STEP 1!

The main focus of this first article is about the communication between YOU and the professors of the schools of your choice (usually it is good to have about 5 colleges/conservatories to choose from). I cannot stress how imperative it is that you introduce yourself and stay in contact with the professor so that they remember your name or a little bit about you.  What I have been doing is sending an email to the professors of the schools that I am interested in, stating who I am and that I am interested in their studio, similar to this:

Mr. / Mrs. ___________________,
    Hello my name is ________________ and I just wanted to take a moment and introduce myself and express my deep interest in your studio. Any information about your studio or your style of teaching would be much appreciated. Thank you.
                           Sincerely,  _________________________  

Another bit of advice is, if you have the opportunity to take a lesson with that teacher, DO IT! Fortunately for me, I had the opportunity to work with one of my choices this summer and the experience was great. It gave me a chance to see the school and see how he teaches as well as whether or not it worked for me. This will give you a chance to meet them in person, for them to gain a personal relationship with you, and it will also give you some insight as to what it is that he/she is expecting when it is audition time. Another plus to this is that the first time nerves are already over with and so now you can focus on playing to the best of your ability when it comes to the actual audition.
****If you have any questions, comments, or ideas for upcoming topics dealing with the college audition process, please contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., I would love to hear from you. 

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