Preparing Your Orchestra Audition: A Roadmap to Becoming the Musician You Always Wanted to Be

Preparing orchestra audition repertoire is far more than a practical necessity—it can be a transformative pathway toward instrumental and artistic growth. Through my teaching as well as personal audition experiences, I have learned that mastering the excerpts and acquiring the skills necessary to play with confidence under audition pressure can inspire and motivate you to learn to play with better control, refined musicality, and to define and execute virtuosity in new ways. With time and patience, this leads to improvement in all types of playing in all situations beyond the orchestra audition. In this essay, I describe my approach to different components of the preparation process—listening to and absorbing the repertoire, making orchestral excerpts part of your practice routine, using musicality to guide the necessary acquisition of new technique, approaches to intonation, rhythm, sound quality, and dynamics, and the emphasis on long-term progress.
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