Solos to work for auditions?

Discussion in 'Orchestral Auditions [DB]' started by PJEBassist, Mar 13, 2005.

  1. PJEBassist


    Aug 3, 2004
    Paducah, KY
    Hey there! What are some of the best things in general to play for an audition? Should you just pick out a solo that challenges you and play it according to the music precisely (well, technically at least, sometimes we as musicians find the little nuances that make us MO, musical orgasm) and well presented and prepared?

    Also, I have finished Marcello's Sonata in E minor (Lucas Drew) and Apres Un Reve (A minor, Fred Zimmerman). I have these solos on hand:

    Galliard - Sonata in G Major (Fred Zimmerman)
    Eccles - Sonata in G minor
    Faure - Elegy (Opus 24)
    Corelli - Sonata in C minor

    Which of those would you like to play the most and would be best suited for an audition? Thanks a ton!


    **Edit** I know I should ask my teacher about this stuff, but we parted ways because I didn't like the way he taught.
  2. Hampton


    Mar 1, 2005
    If that's your repertoire list, pick the one that demonstrates your personal best at both of the following: technical authority and a compelling expressiveness.

    It's common practice that today's orchestral auditions require a movement from a concerto and two contrasting movements from one of the Bach suites for cello. Best to keep those at the ready as well.

  3. Ben Joella

    Ben Joella

    May 31, 2004
    Boca Raton, FL
    Hello Hampton,

    Welcome to Talkbass! :)
  4. Hampton


    Mar 1, 2005
    Thanks, Ben. Yes this was my virgin post. Or is that post virgin post? :rolleyes:

    I see from your profile you're in Grand Rapids. Did you work with Catherine Comet? Please give my regards to Dave Gross.
  5. Ben Joella

    Ben Joella

    May 31, 2004
    Boca Raton, FL

    Sent private message instead.
  6. Hampton


    Mar 1, 2005
    CLICK HERE for the Detroit Symphony's principal bass audition rep. list. Hope it's also of interest.
  7. kraid


    Apr 11, 2003
    On a related note, do modern pieces work well for auditions? If I went into an audition playing Theraps by Xenakis would it fare as well as the Koussevitzky concerto?
  8. prelims222


    Sep 20, 2004
    Southeast US
    No - it wouldn't. There was an interesting article about 5 years back in an ISB where Larry Hurst sent a survey out to a large number of professional classical bassists with regards to the solo portion of an audition - the consensus on Modern pieces is that they are not a good choice for a Symphony Orchestra audition.

    Koussevitsky or Bottesini were the #1 solos of Choice, followed by Vanhal, I believe.

    And of course Bach - gotta have the Bach in there.
  9. DonQuartz


    Dec 18, 2004
    Theraps is one of the most impossible and bizarre compositions for bass. Nothing in it relates to normal playing in an orchestra or anywhere else.Theraps doesn't show anything that is ever used or will be used in an orchestral career.
    An audition jury would never know what hit them if they were even listening after the laughter started.
    Doing a successful audition involves making sensible choices. Making a mainstream solo selection would also be appropriate.
    Koussevitsky, Bottesini, Vanhal, Dittersdorf, Bach and even Dragonetti (Nanny) will always be welcome. If you can't or won't play any of those, don't bother.
  10. Hampton


    Mar 1, 2005
    I don't know about the rest of the musical world, but I'd surely welcome come variety from audition candidates. Take the Tubin concerto for example...
  11. among those baroque sonatas, i prefer to play the eccles in g minor the most. however, i also like the second movement of the corelli in c minor... i think the audience really liked it when i performed it onstage. however, for orchestral auditions, i think you should try the vanhal concerto in d major... i think it will work well as an audition piece...

    peace to all!!!
  12. G-force


    Jul 1, 2004
    oslo Norway
    Hi all, Someone mentioned theTubin concerto. I have tried to get a hold of it . where does one find the sheet music for this great peice.??
  13. prelims222


    Sep 20, 2004
    Southeast US
    I think Hal Robinson is publishing an edition of it now. Otherwise, I've only found it in libraries.
  14. BGreaney

    BGreaney Guest

    Mar 7, 2005
    well, for what it's worth i'm pretty sure hal robinson states in the preface to his koussevitzky edition that he thinks its a piece that could best demonstrate ones technical and musical ability in an orchestral audition setting...i would tend to agree.
  15. AllegroConBasso


    Apr 3, 2005
    I find all of this discussion so fascinating! So superfluous! the only aforementioned work I have played in audtions is the dragonetti which when played loudly (with punch) is a charming demonstation of spiccato and loud playing.

    My standard concerto is actually not so standard. For the past 6 years I have been exclusively playing the Simandl Concerto for its long soothing lines, technical feats of strength, and spiccato. It is a taste of something different for the committee and shows that I have done my research on the double bass repertoire.

    As far as bach is concerned I am of the "play as written from the cello part" school. The pieces are overly difficult at pitch and it was not Bach's intention to write showpieces. The works sound easy in the low positions as intended. I like the srabande from suite 5 and the prelude to suite 2. You will need an extension, however.

    this should help!
  16. BGreaney

    BGreaney Guest

    Mar 7, 2005
    acb, you may also consider that the cello suites were not written for bass in the first place and im sure than in his time, bach never imagined that a bassist might try to attempt such a thing on such a "clumsy" instrument. i also think that if you're not going to do it at pitch, the best alternative would probably be the c.f. peters edition. it seems to sit a little more comfortably in regards to the instrument and is also a little higher so as to avoid venturing down to the extension. i know that's the kind of sound youre each his own i suppose...sorry i know after my reply to your post in the other thread this might seem like a personal attack, but i promise it is not intended in that way.
  17. EFischer1

    EFischer1 Guest

    Mar 17, 2002
    New York, New York
    Good places to start with Bach, for your purposes, Jake, would definately be the C.F. Peters edition of the 1st suite. Particularly the Menuets and Gigue are good starting places and are also great audition pieces when played at pitch. Best of luck.