Jukebox and Radio
Lots of these songs are from what we call Jukebox Musicals. Jukebox musicals are musicals that don’t have an original score. One well known example would Be Rock of Ages. Rock of ages has plenty of classic rock songs woven into a story line. This and Shows such as Grease and Smoky Joe’s Cafe also fit the bill.
There are Worse Things I could Do Grease
Want you Back by the Jackson 5
Anything from XANADU. (Roller skates not required.)
Yes, he gets his own category because he has earned his own category. His music is beautiful and complicated and everyone will tell you to never give an accompanist a Sondheim song to sight-read but sometimes directors will ask for it and sometimes it’s worth the risk to look seriously impressive.
Anyone can Whistle from Anyone Can Whistle
I Feel Pretty from West Side Story
I Know Things Now from Into the Woods
On the Steps of the Palace From Into the Woods
There are virtually no unknown songs in this category that a director will sit and say “wow, I haven’t heard that one before…” unless they’re lying. These songs are from shows that disney has produced on Broadway. If it hasn’t made it to Broadway or at least into a stage musical, don’t bother with it. These songs are all overdone, so take your pick and find your favorite!
Part of That World from the Little Mermaid
A Whole New World from Aladdin
Santa Fe from Newsies
Home From Beauty and the Beast
Musical Theatre Pop
The genre includes any song from a pop musical from witers such as Alan Menken, Jason Robert Brown, and Stephen Schwartz.
Here are some examples for you:
That’s what it means to be a Friend From 13 the Musical
Honey, Honey from Mamma Mia
Someone Else’s Story from Chess
Amongst many other.
Post-Golden Age Standards:
Golden Age standards are the show like Godspell, Cabaret, A Chorus Line.
And let me tell you, if you can nail a Sondheim song for an audition, do it. But otherwise, be very careful.
Day by Day From Godspell
Maybe This Time From Cabaret
What I Did For Love From A Chorus Line
The most important thing you need for a musical audition is a musical audition notebook. This is a small 1-1 1/2 in. notebook , black or white that holds everything you need for a musical audition.
What to have in your notebook:
- Several copies of your theatre resume. Make sure you keep extra of these in the outside sleeves just in case you need more than the amount asked for. You can never have too many copies. Just make sure you don’t keep them in there all the time of the edges will get frayed.
- Sheet music for your audition. This is the most important so you have music to give to the accompanist. There are a lot of categories for the genres of music you should have in your notebook, which I will address in later posts because there are a LOT of them.
- Sheet protectors for your music. The idea for this is to keep your music clean and easy to turn. Tip: When putting your music into your notebook make sure to limit the amount of page turns for a song. Because the more the pianist has to turn a page the more chances they have to mess up while you are singing.
Your notebook is your notebook and it is open for interpretation.
A Singer’s Most Important Audition Tool
While there are a lot of rules in royalty contracts about recording performances of plays and musicals, there are several resources online where you can watch entire plays (and sometimes musicals).
Places to look for shows:
- Your local library. Depending on where you live, you might even have a performing arts library, but sometimes you can stumble on some jewels in the video section of your public library. You’re most likely to find some older movies or plays. These are especially good for finding greek plays. And educational versions.
- Your University Library. Sometimes this get s little frustrating if you don;t actually attend the University. So this is more for the College students looking for monologues or taking a class. Personally, I know my school has a collection of plays and videos of plays accessible online with your student ID and password.
- Digital Theatre. This website makes the West End in London available online for those who cannot actually see the live shows. You can rent or buy digital recordings of these shows similar to how you would movies or DVD. Prices vary. You’ll be paying about $5-6 to rent a perfromance for 48 hours of just under $20 for a purchase. Not the best deal, but they are professional performances and very reliable and never a waste of money. (I highly recommend Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing starring Doctor Who costars David Tennant and Catherine Tate.) You won’t be disappointed.
- BroadwayHD. This is a relatively new website that is basically Netflix for Broadway. You subscribe on a monthly basis for $14.99 per month or purchase a whole year of unlimited streaming for $169.99. Pricey, but if you go to their website. You can browse their titles and decide for yourself.
- PBS. Great for Shakespeare, not so great for anything else. But you can watch full, profession versions of Shakespeare plays for free.