Online Auditions for the Grinnell Singers 2020

July 16, 2020

We will be having auditions for the Grinnell Singers online this year. Please sign up for an audition time. After you sign up for a time, you will receive an invitation for a one-on-one Webex video conference meeting with John Rommereim. You don’t need to have the Webex application to use it.

Auditions Times

  • Wednesday, Aug. 26 from 2–4 p.m. CDT
  • Thursday, Aug. 27 from noon–2 p.m. CDT
  • Friday, Aug. 28 from 10 a.m.–noon CDT

Audition Process

During the 15-minute audition, we’ll devote some time to getting to know each other a little, and then we’ll do the following:

  • I'll ask you to sing back short melodies played on the piano (testing tonal memory). This should work fine online.
  • We'll test your vocal range using a simple pattern, such as 1–5–4–3–2–1 on “ee” and “ah” vowels. The pattern will move up and down by half steps. This could be a little trickier online because I’m unable to accompany you as usual. I’ll play the pattern, then you’ll sing afterward; we won’t try to sing and play together.
  • You will sing “Hands” by Jocelyn Hagen (PDF, login required), starting at measure 16. For accompaniment, you can use one of these four YouTube videos: soprano, alto, tenor, bass. (Each of the videos has one of the voice parts highlighted). We’ll see how this works. I’m hoping that you’ll be able to play the video on your phone or on your computer and sing over it. Please note: If you don’t have much experience reading vocal music and you find this exercise to be too challenging, please do still audition. Sight-reading skills are very helpful for the ensemble, but they aren’t all-important. If you have a good ear (which we test in the first two segments of the audition), you can still be a strong contributor to the ensemble.
  • Optionally, you may sing a prepared piece up to three minutes long. It is helpful to hear how you sound when you're singing a piece that you know well. Any style is acceptable — whatever allows you to show your musical and vocal personality. Again, this is optional; it is perfectly OK if you don't have a prepared piece. It’s also fine to use a recorded accompaniment, since I’m unable to accompany you as I usually would.
  • If you would like to participate in the Grinnell Singers “Hands” virtual choir, you would be very welcome to do so. This is totally optional; if you enjoy this sort of thing, you’re welcome to join in. If you have any questions about the virtual choir, feel free to contact John Rommereim via email.

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