Audition Video Recommendations:
- Since this is the only chance for the student to be heard, the quality of the recording should be of utmost consideration. The quality of your recording will affect the evaluators’ ability to review and comment. A high quality audio and video recording is expected.
- Your audition should be prepared like any professional audition.
- Dress for performance. An evening gown and tux are not necessary, but ripped jeans, ball caps and tank-tops are not professional.
- Consider lighting, framing, and camera placement. Film in a well-lit space, and be sure that there is more lighting in front of you (rather than from behind).
- Stay away from clutter, use a simple back ground. No food, laundry, music, instrument cases, or other distractions should be in the shot.
- We recommend using a tripod, stand, or place camera on a flat surface while shooting.
- Place the camera so that you, your instrument, and your full range of motion are in the frame at all times. When using music, be sure the music stand does not block your face, hands, or instrument.
- Choose a medium distance that shows as much detail as possible, while still allowing the image to be framed as described above. Do not use the zoom function as this makes the image grainy or fuzzy.
- Try to avoid using “selfie” mode on your devices as it does not allow for a wide enough camera angle.
- Be aware of the acoustic environment in which you record. Background noise (television noise, other people practicing, dancing, cooking, etc.) and poor sound quality make your recording difficult to evaluate. If you are recording from your phone or tablet, it should be set horizontally. Be sure to set it in Airplane mode or Do Not Disturb mode to avoid interruptions.
- Review your recording(s) before you submit and check the sound level to ensure the best audio quality.
- Only unedited recordings can be accepted, and should be in high fidelity stereo. Other than stopping and starting the camera between segments, no editing of the audio or video is permitted. Applicants whose videos show evidence of any cuts, splicing, manipulation of pitch, or other alteration within a performance segment will be subject to disqualification.
- It is encouraged to state your name, age, high school and state at the beginning of your audition recording.
JAZZ BAND OF AMERICA: WINDS AUDITION REQUIREMENTS
1) Prepared Selection: Charlie Parker’s “Billie’s Bounce”- medium tempo with standard or alternate chord changes. Accompaniment may be live (preferred) or recorded. We also encourage the use of an interactive computer accompaniment program if live accompaniment is not available. (3 choruses of improvisation optional)
2) Swing Selection (Jazz Standard): Play a jazz classic or standard song in any jazz style, including the melody. If you are auditioning for a Jazz Chair – include improvisation on this selection, minimum two choruses/ maximum of three on this particular piece.
3) Lead/Section Trumpet, Section/Bass Trombone, or Baritone Saxophone ONLY: Choose an ensemble excerpt or jazz etude designed for your instrument in addition to the swing selection melody excerpt above that demonstrates your proficiency (style, technique, range — high for trumpet; low for bass trombone and baritone saxophone).
JAZZ BAND OF AMERICA: DRUM SET AUDITION REQUIREMENTS
1) Prepared Selection: Charlie Parker’s “Billie’s Bounce” blues choruses: 4 choruses of time, 2 choruses of trading 4s, 2 choruses of solo, repeat 2 choruses of time. Accompaniment may be live (strongly preferred) or recorded.
2) Demonstrate Time: Latin, Ballad (brushes), Hip Hop/Funk and Up-Tempo Swing. Play on song forms 1 minute each style. Include 1 chorus of improvisation for each style.
3) A 2 to 5-minute video segment playing time with a big band (not soloing). Live preferred but if not available, play-alongs accepted. Include materials authored by Steve Houghton and/or Gordon Goodwin.
JAZZ BAND OF AMERICA: BASS, GUITAR, PIANO AUDITION REQUIREMENTS
1) Prepared Selection: Charlie Parker’s “Billie’s Bounce.” Accompaniment may be live (preferred) or recorded, medium tempo with standard or alternate chord changes.
- Piano/Guitar/Vibes: Melody, 3 choruses of comping, 3 choruses of improvisation.
- Bass: Melody, 3 choruses of walking, 3 choruses of improvisation.
2) Swing Selection: Play a jazz classic or standard song in any jazz style.
- Piano/Guitar/Vibes: Melody, 2 choruses of comping as appropriate to style, minimum 2 choruses/maximum of three of improvisation.
- Bass: Melody, walk for 2 choruses, minimum 2 choruses/maximum of three of improvisation.
3) Straight Eighth Selection (Brazilian/Afro-Cuban/Funk) Selection of your choice.
- Piano/Guitar/Vibes: Melody, two choruses of comping as appropriate to style, minimum 2 choruses/maximum of three of improvisation.
- Bass: Melody, two choruses of an appropriate bass line in the chosen style, minimum 2 choruses/maximum of three of improvisation.
4) Ballad Selection:
- Piano/Guitar/Vibes: Melody, comping as appropriate to style for two choruses, minimum 2 choruses/maximum of three of improvisation.
- Bass: Bass line as appropriate to style for two choruses instead of comping, optional improvisation-minimum 2 choruses/ maximum of three.