Acting in Plays, Singing/high school musicals


Thank you so much beforehand for being helpful. I am a freshman in high school. Last year there was no school musical. This year we have a new choir director, the director is retirering and I'm not sure if the choreographer is there or not. They're thinking of bringing back alumini to star in this year's show. I am around 5'5" with brown hair, hazel eyes and a youngish face. My voice is sorta high, but my singing range is sorta small, with most of it low. To give you an idea of the range I  can sing Love Changes Everything from Aspects of love comfortably up until the high parts like 'all the rules we made are broken' and the ending. I am not the most attractive person in the world, and I am considered a very quiet person, but I can be loud when I want to and I am very good at facial acting. At high school level is generally considered that having a foothold with the casting people helps land you a role. I was in choir a couple years ago so the old choir director knew I was very responsible,but now I'm in band so the new one doesn't know me. The choreographer saw me in a community theatre this summer, so he knows I can learn  complicated stuff. But he's leaving so I won't be able to get some brownie points. Also in all the musicals I've been in I've been in the chorus, because of stiff competition. It just that know I am gonna have to compete with college freshman. I'm not sure what the musical is, but they might do anything goes. I am 90% sure it will have tap dancing and I am not very good at dancing. I am just asking if you have any tips, monologues,or songs that help me be competition worthy.

Hi, Carlee --

Thank you for the question and all the details.

It’s easy to see that you understand all the politics involved. It’s no different in professional theatre. Get used to it.

Whenever possible, it’s always a good idea to sing a song by the composer of the show -- but not from the same show you’re auditioning for. If the musical is Cole Porter’s ANYTHING GOES, then your job at this audition is to prove to everybody involved that you can sing a song by Cole Porter -- the way Cole Porter intended his material to be performed. That will take some study and research on your part. Like, finding out the names of the stars who have succeeded with Cole Porter shows, then checking out the video samples on YouTube, Amazon, etc. In other words, learn the “feel” of the song -- the Cole Porter touches.

Consider one of Porter’s major hits, “Most Gentlemen Don’t Like Love”.

Listen to Mary Martin’s version on YouTube:

Go to this web site to locate the sheet music and to transpose the song into the key that would work best for you:

If you choose to use it, then skip the introduction and begin with, “Most gentlemen don’t like love”.

If you want to be in musical theatre, then you have to stop with the excuses and start devoting your life to becoming a better singer and dancer. Simple. Worrying about Who’s Who or how long somebody else has been schmoozing with Whoever is a waste of time. And nobody cares -- especially the audience shelling out hard-earned money for a ticket.

My job as a professional vocal coach is to get my clients’ vocal chops into performance shape -- no matter how old they are or where the opportunity is taking place. Their job is to practice everyday, like I’ve shown them, so that they can be ready when the moment comes.

You’ve only got so much time between now and the day of the audition. If what you really-really want to do this semester is spend it rehearsing in a production of ANYTHING GOES, then devote every minute you’ve got to getting your voice in shape, rehearsing your song of choice, and practicing it in front of a mirror.

I am a vocal coach to working singers in the San Francisco Bay Area. Check out my web site:

I'm also an entertainment and cultural critic for – and Classical music reviewer for – Let me know when you're ready to come to San Francisco for some vocal coaching. I’m also available for lessons on Skype.

See my interview with popular TV host, David Perry, on "Ten Percent":

Below are links to my articles and youtubes on the San Francisco Bay Area entertainment and cultural scene:

A Conversation with Ted Neeley, Hollywood’s ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’

On ‘Billy Budd’—A Trio from Merola: Alex DeSocio, Thomas Richards, Robert Watson

Lawrence Brownlee—On ‘Carmina Burana’, with the SFSymphony—Tuesday, July 30th

On “The Joyless Street” at the Silent Film Festival—An Interview with Matti Bye

THE GERSHWINS AND ME – A Conversation with Michael Feinstein

Introducing Cheyenne Jackson and Alexandra Silber as San Francisco Symphony’s Tony & Maria in “West Side Story”

Nathan Gunn Is ‘Yeshua’ in San Francisco Opera’s “The Gospel of Mary Magdalene”

Natalie Dessay on ‘Becoming Traviata’—French Soprano bids ‘Adieu’ to opera stage

‘Tales of Hoffmann’ Fizzles at San Francisco Opera

‘A Grand Romance’—A Spectacular CD from pianist Jeffrey Biegel

Philippe Sly Debuts In 'Cosi fan tutte' at San Francisco Opera

Nicole Henry redefines the '70s with her latest CD, 'So Good, So Right'

'FILLY BROWN' — An Extraordinary Film from Youssef Delara and Michael D. Olmos

Nonsemble 6 presents Schoenberg's 'Pierrot Lunaire' – in corsets

Tenor Noah Stewart Debuts with Berkeley Symphony in World Premiere of New Work by Steven Stucky

Marnie Breckenridege, A Modern Soprano for Contemporary Opera

A Profile of Choreographer John Neumeier and his "Nijinsky"

In Conversation with Peter Gallagher – Coming to the Venetian Room

Melody Moore steps into Tosca — Opening Night at San Francisco Opera

'Moby-Dick' opens at San Francisco Opera: A Conversation with Composer Jake Heggie

'Drama Queens' – A Conversation with Mezzo-Soprano Joyce DiDonato

Marco Vratogna Is Sensational as Rigoletto at San Francisco Opera

A conversation with Joshua Bell, featured guest artist at opening of SF Symphony, 9/19

Samuel Ramey is Leo the Great in San Francisco Opera's 'Attila'

Tom Judson Is Making It Big In San Francisco

A Look at Gennadi Nedvigin, Principal Dancer with San Francisco Ballet

Organist Christopher Houlihan Makes A Powerful Debut at Davies Symphony Hall

RICHARD WINSOR – An Interview With the Star of 'Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake in 3D'

DEANNA DURBIN – The Leading Lady of NOIR CITY, Wednesday at The Castro Theatre

CUBAN BALLET – An Interview with Octavio Roca

A Look At "Giselle" with Ballerina Lorena Feijóo

ZUILL BAILEY – A Conversation

Best regards,
Sean Martinfield

Acting in Plays, Singing

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Sean Martinfield


I am a professional vocal coach in San Francisco. I have published over 3300 responses related to vocal training - particularly as it relates to Musical Theatre, Pop/Standard, and Opera. I have 30 years of experience as a personal trainer to working singers and actors in the San Francisco Bay Area. I sang professionally for 20 years and know what it means to live the life of a musician. I can determine your voice category, i.e., Tenor, Baritone, Bass, Soprano, Mezzo-Soprano, Alto, Alto Belter, etc., and how to broaden and strengthen your range. Need an audition song for a Broadway Musical? I can assist you with your song selections and help you build an audition portfolio that demonstrates your vocal category and meets the requirements specified in the audition notice. I have created a vocal methodology, "The Belter`s Method". It will enable those in Cabaret and Musical Theatre to practice more efficiently because it focuses on the vocal demands of professional performers and will keep you performance-ready. If what you want is a better voice and more control over your career moves and choices, contact me at: I am also a music and cultural critic for and I interview internationally recognized musicians, singers, dancers, and recording artists -- particularly those who are now appearing or scheduled to perform in San Francisco.


As a vocal coach, I work primarily with singers and actors throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. My students range from absolute beginners to working professionals, from kids to senior citizens. The vast majority of my clients come to me through recommendation. I know how to identify any singer's vocal category, i.e., soprano, tenor, alto, baritone, etc. I know how to muscle-up every singer's vocal range and to expand it beyond conventional definitions. I have developed a vocal methodology for those who want to know how to belt, THE BELTER'S METHOD. There are a number of major components to my work as a vocal coach. The first is to identify the client's vocal category and to strengthen and maximize the vocal range accordingly. Then it's about teaching a reliable vocal workout that will enable the client to gain better control of their musicianship. That includes scale work to expand the vocal range and to improve placement, breath control, and diction. Then we work on material for the audition portfolio, the immediate job or assignment, a recording session, etc. My task to is to better equip singers and actors who are hoping to or relying upon their performance skills and vocal endurance to maintain a career in the Performing Arts. My clients regularly appear in cabarets and musical productions throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. Some have worked in New York and gone on National Tours. For more information, Contact me at:


San Francisco State University – BA in Theatre Arts; graduate work in Theatre, Philosophy, and Comparative Reiligion. Pacific School of Religion, Berkeley – Graduate work in Ethics

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