Magazine article Strings

Making the Band

Magazine article Strings

Making the Band

Article excerpt

What to know for the big audition

In the reality TV show, Making the Band, auditioning is easy: just perform flawlessly, impress millions of television viewers, and complete random tasks like walking from Manhattan to the Bronx to buy cheesecake for P. Diddy.

If only it were that easy for electric string players. Whether the audition Is for a garage band or a Broadway show, no one knows if any string player will make the finals. Non-singers who don't play guitar, bass, drums, sax, or keyboards are going to have to prove their instrument even has a place in the band.

Every contestant should ask a few basic questions before he or she enters "the house."

* How much rehearsal, travel, and performance will there be?

* How much money, if any, are we looking at? And when is pay day?

If the answers sound good, it's time to make a good first impression. "Artists should show the best versions of themselves," says Marie-Noëlle Carón, an agent for Cirque du Soleil, the world's coolest musical circus. "Don't overdress or wear something that isn't you, but make sure that you are clean and that your clothes show that this audition is not just an everyday event."

Image is a bigger deal for musicians than we'd like to admit, but none of it matters if there's no sound. Audition music should be memorized, tested, and ready. All amps, pedals, and cords should be tested and ready to go, too.

When it comes to smaller band situations, there are some other things to keep an eye out for:

* Who's in charge and needs to be impressed the most?

* Are the other musicians cool? Or are there too many divas for them to make it through the season? …

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