Took an orchestra audition recently and felt well-prepared on the material, but at the crucial moment I could NOT get in control of my nerves. Kept thinking I would fall into a groove, but I just could not. My playing sounded as jittery as I felt. If it was a speed-metal orchestra I may have won. I guess I need to learn to channel that "fight-or-flight" adrenaline rush into more fight and less flight. Maybe if I lose another one or two, I will get pissed off enough and that will work. I tried preparing by visualizing walking into the hall, sitting down, starting my first piece...worked on this for several weeks beforehand and tried to immunize myself to the adrenaline. It just didn't work. Well it was the first orch. audition I took in about 20 years. Lots of gigs in between, but no full-time orchestra and no behind-the-screen auditions. The night before, I dreamed there were 120 bassists auditioning for the post, and the only bow I had with me was a French bow (which I don't play) with the hair falling out, and the end of my fingerboard was warping upward into the strings, and then my 'A' string broke. Needless to say I took every spare string I had to the real audition...and the only spare I don't have is an 'A' so I figured I would use a 'D' if I had to. Nothing went wrong except I played like I was on 13 cups of coffee and an 8-day meth binge. I understand auditioning is a skill and that I will likely take several before winning a position. Just wish I could work out that little nerves detail in a more efficient way. It's probably a common concern, that the audition where you feel the most confident will be the job you're least interested in winning. Put another way, if you attempt to take an audition just to add to your preparedness, all of a sudden you find yourself moving the family someplace you never planned to live.