Flute/Collee Auditions

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Question
Hello!
I have college auditions coming up soon and am having trouble on deciding what to play. The auditions are for placements in one of the school's bands or orchestras. The audition includes major and melodic minor scales (do you think I should go for full range scales, or just two-three octaves?), sight reading, and two contrasting solos. My repertoire includes the following:
Carmen Fantasy - Borne
Sonata (4th mvt) - Prokofiev
Concerto in G (K. 313, 1st mvt) - Mozart
Fantasie - Hue
Acht Stucke - Hindemith
Fantasie Pastorale Hongroise - Doppler
Concertino - Chaminade
Andante in C - Mozart
Variations on a Theme by Rossini - Chopin
Sonata (1st mvt) - Taktakishvili
Sonata in C - Benda
Three Preludes - Muczynski

Can you give me any insight on which pieces/composers would be from "contrasting" periods? Additionally, in your opinion, which pieces would be more impressive to play in an audition? Also, which combination of two pieces would show more musicality/technique/tone and range of my abilities? I have already consultedy lesson teacher and would just like to get more opinions. Thank you for your time!!

Answer
Hey Kristina,

First of all, good luck in your auditions! :)

I would go for as a full a range of scales as you can comfortably play.  For instance, if you can hit the high D above the high C that's the traditional highest note on the flute, you can make your D major scale go from two octaves to three.  But if it's problematic for you to hit reliably, then stick with what you can play best.  As long as all of your scales are at least two octaves, then that's okay. :)

You have some awesome audition pieces there.   Definitely, I would prepare the Mozart - at many auditions, playing one of the Mozart concerti is a requirement anyway.  

What they mean when they ask for contrasting styles/periods is that you show your range of musical experience.  Mozart is Austrian/German music of the classical period, while Taktakishvili is 20th century Russian/Georgian, so those are an example of contrasting styles and periods.  The judges just want to get an idea of how you play across a range of different pieces, so if you went in there playing Bach, Handel, and Mozart, that would be harder for them to get an idea of you as a musician than if you played French, Russian, and Austrian music from three different time periods.

My recommendation for you is to pick a couple of pieces that you are extremely comfortable with playing.  It may be a temptation to trot out the newest flashy piece you just learned, but that's going to be most likely to break down under stress.  So if you have a few pieces that you know really well, those old standbys are going to be more friendly to you when you're in the audition room.  

So, without knowing how long you've played each of these pieces, and what your comfort level is with each of them, it's hard for me to pick a set that would be best tailored to you for your auditions, but I will say the Mozart concerto, the Carmen Fantasy, and the Taktakishvili sonata movement are three very different styles and would showcase various aspects of your playing.   The Carmen is especially good because it's easy to jump around in it and play a part that showcases the technical part (judges will often ask you to skip around since auditions are so short).  The Chaminade could serve instead of the Borne, too - I would just be careful about picking two French Romantic era pieces.  Also, the Prokofiev would be good, too, in place of the Taktakishvili, if you preferred that.

Bottom line, you have some really really good choices here! :) It's just a matter of narrowing down these pieces by how comfortable you are with them and then making sure you aren't playing two from the same composer nationality / time period.  

Do you need to play any orchestral excerpts for the orchestra auditions?   That can often be a requirement, too.  If so, make sure you listen to the orchestral version (YouTube is a great, free resource!) so you know how your solo fits into the context of the piece.

Lastly, here's a little editorial on my site about how to audition: http://silentgalaxy.com/auditions.html", in case it has anything useful for you. :)

I hope this helps!

~Holly~

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Holly

Expertise

I can answer questions about learning to play the flute, reading music, problems encountered when playing, flute repertoire, practicing tips, and performing, as well as information about classical composers and their works. Please note that I am no longer accepting any questions about what kind of flute to buy, upgrading, flute brands, reselling, what a flute is worth, etc. I have answered many of these questions in the past, so please either view my answers in the the previously asked questions section or visit my website, which has a page about buying flutes: silentgalaxy.com/buyingflutes.html. Thanks!

Experience

I've played the flute since fourth grade, graduating with my master's degree in flute performance. I have taught at local music schools, given flute lessons for over ten years, have played in and soloed with several orchestras, chamber groups, and various other ensembles. For more information about me, visit my website at silentgalaxy.com. I love the flute, and I love helping people, so I welcome your questions!

Education/Credentials
Bachelor's and master's degrees in flute performance from Carnegie Mellon University.

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