Auditioning for Musical Theatre Schools and Colleges or Music College

Audition Tips & Listings

Many of my vocal students are preparing for a career in performance and are planning to apply for (or are already studying at) a further education establishment. 

Planning for your singing audition is important.  There are so many applicants for a college to choose from so check all the tips below to ensure you are prepared and that you have the edge. 

Too many applicants are underprepared.  Understanding the process will give you a vital insight into how to maximise your chances of acceptance.


1. CHECK YOUR AUDITION INVITATION LETTER AND ENSURE YOU HAVE THE FOLLOWINGS INFO – Address of audition, date and time of audition, audition requirements (i.e. number of songs, song style, number of bars required etc.) If you are auditioning for a number of colleges, make sure the details are not confused and you are correctly prepared for the right audition. Plan to arrive at the audition early.

Musical Theatre Audition Tips

"Make a folder for your audition letters and arrange them in 'DATE OF AUDITION' order."

2. CHOOSE SONGS THAT YOU DO WELL – It sounds obvious but make sure the songs show off your best vocal attributes without being a stretch.  Struggling and reaching for a high note is not impressive – hitting notes with confidence and control is. Songs that you do well may not necessarily be your favourite songs but remember that you are demonstrating what you do well and not your wonderful taste in music.

3. PICK RELEVANT MATERIAL – Choose your songs based on the style requested and the relevance of the piece to you (i.e. age appropriate, something you can relate to) Do some research to ensure you understand the context of the song and the style. Avoid songs that you believe everyone else will do – no matter how well you do it - Defying Gravity from Wicked is a very good song but will have been heard so much in audition that a singer can be at a disadvantage before the intro is over!

4. WHAT ARE YOU SAYING? - Give your songs character and meaning.  Compare your singing to a conversation – are your tones, placement and delivery highlighting the emotions?  Simple volume changes can create huge emotional hooks.

5. BE PREPARED TO GET TECHNICAL – You may be asked about your song and your approach to it.  If you have correctly planned your audition you will be able to talk about the elements you wanted to show off.

Musical Theatre Audition Tips

"Remember my Warm-Up CD or MP3's works every performance element so use the tracks as a checklist for your technical approach! - GET IT HERE singing warm up"

6. BE MUSICALLY LITERATE – Understand the basics of music theory so that you can interpret the dynamic markings, speed, key and general flow of what you are presenting.

Musical Theatre Audition Tips

"If you don't have a teacher - visit for FREE online music theory lessons!"

7. PRACTICE – Know your pieces well so that you can be confident.  Mark your practice lyric sheets/music with your own notes so that every part is planned and shaped to be exactly how you want it.   Keep recording/filming yourself practice so you can hear what works and what doesn’t.  A well-planned piece gives you the freedom to be confident. Your planning will be evident in your performance and will be further evidence that you would make a great student!

8. WARM-UP – With the excitement of getting to the audition, many candidates forget to warm-up.  Plan your warm-up and schedule it into your day.  Don’t let your hard work get wasted by auditioning with a voice that is not fully ready to impress!

Musical Theatre Audition Tips

singing warm up "My warm-up CD or MP3's will help you reach safe, optimum voice quickly GET IT HERE"

9. PREPARE YOUR MATERIAL IN THE CORRECT FORMAT – Some colleges ask for a backing track on CD or MP3 player whilst others may require sheet music.  Check CD’s on a variety of players to ensure they play and perhaps even take a spare.  Ensure your mp3 player is ready to play so that you don’t have to sort through your playlists at the audition.  If sheet music is required, then it should be single sided print joined with sticky tape on one side so that it can be laid out on the piano (5 sheets or less).  If your music is more than 5 sheets then it should be presented in a 4-ring folder, double sided (like a book) and in MATTE finish pockets.  Regular shiny plastic pockets can cause glare and make the music difficult to read.  If you are performing a section of a song, then your sheet music should be clearly marked so that the pianist knows where to start and finish.  Backing tracks should be tastefully cut to start at the correct point. Remember that if you are asked to sing a section or specific number of bars this does not need to be from the start – for example, you may decide that the best section of the song may be near the end and so the bar count can start from that part.

Musical Theatre Audition Tips

"Did you know you can buy backing tracks from Amazon and iTunes? You can also listen to a sample before you buy to check quality and key. Sheet music can be purchased online for you to print at home - this saves money as you don't have to visit a specialist shop or buy an entire book. There are many digital sheet music suppliers inc.,,"

10. BE POLITE AND INTRODUCE YOURSELF – Unless otherwise instructed, tell the panel who you are and what you are about to sing. Let them see your personality.

To get a good idea of course content and find out how to apply, check the website of your chosen school or college.  Most of the major establishments in the UK are listed below in alphabetical order.

Musical Theatre Audition Tips



"You can download this list by clicking this Word document icon Musical Theatre College List"

American Musical Theatre Academy, Europa House, 13-17 Ironmonger Row, London EC1V 3QG

Amersham and Wycombe College, Amersham Campus, Stanley Hill, Amersham, Buckinghamshire HP7 9HN

Arabesque School for Performing Arts, Quarry Lane, Chichester, West Sussex PO19 8NY

Arts Educational Schools London, Cone Ripman House, 14 Bath Road, Chiswick, London W4 1LY 

Arts Educational Schools London, Cone Ripman House, 14 Bath Road, Chiswick, London W4 1LY

Barbara Speake Stage School, East Acton Lane, London W3 7EG

Bird College, The Centre, 27 Station Road, Sidcup, Kent DA15 7EB

Blackpool and the Fylde College, Ashfield Road, Bispham, Blackpool FY2 0HB
Bodywork Company Dance Studios, 25-29 Glisson Road, Cambridge CB1 2HA

Bournemouth and Poole College, Customer Enquiry Centre, North Road, Poole, Dorset BH14 OLS
Brit School for Performing Arts and Technology, 60 The Crescent, Croydon, Kent CR0 2HN

Central School of Speech and Drama
, Embassy Theatre, Eton Avenue, London NW3 3HY

City Lit, Keeley Street, Covent Garden, London WC2B 4BA

CPA Studios, The Studios, 219b North Street, Romford, Essex RM1 4QA

D&B School of Performing Arts, Central Studios, 470 Bromley Road, Bromley, Kent BR1 4PQ

Expressions Academy of Performing Arts, 3 Newgate Lane, Mansfield, Notts NG18 2LB

Glasgow Academy Musical Theatre Arts, The Brickhouse, 19-23 Farnell Street, Glasgow G4 9SE

Guildford School of Acting, Stag Hill Campus, Guildford, Surrey GU2 7XH

Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Silk Street, Barbican, London EC2Y 8DT

Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts, Italia Conti House, 23 Goswell Road, London EC1M 7AJ

KSA Academy of Performing Arts, Beckenham Halls, 4 Bromley Road, Beckenham, Kent BR3 5JE

Laine Theatre Arts, The Studios, East Street, Epsom, Surrey KT17 1HH

Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, Mount Street, Liverpool L1 9HF

Liverpool Theatre School and College, 19 Aigburth Road, Liverpool L17 4JR 

London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, 155 Talgarth Road, London W14 9DA

London School of Musical Theatre, 83 Borough Road, London SE1 1DN

London Theatre School, 141 Wardour Street, London W1F 0UT

Midlands Academy of Dance and Drama, Century House, Building B, 428 Carlton Hill, Nottingham NG4 1QA 

Millennium Dance 2000, Millennium Performing Arts, 29 Thomas Street, Woolwich, London SE18 6HU

Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, Ralph Richardson Memorial Studios, Clarendon Road, Wood Green, London N22 6XF

Music Theatre Scotland, Moss Road, Newcastleton, Roxburghshire TD9 0RU 

Performance Preparation Academy, Bellerby Theatre and Studios, College Road, Guildford GU1 4QG
Performers College, Southend Road, Corringham, Essex SS17 8JT

Read Dance and Theatre College, Myra McCulloch Building, Bulmershe Court, Reading RG6 1HY

Redroofs Theatre School, 26 Bath Road, Maidenhead, Berks SL6 4JT

Reynolds Performing Arts Academy, Orchard House, Kent Road, Dartford, Kent DA1 2AJ

Royal Academy of Music, Marylebone Road, London NW1 5HT 

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, 100 Renfrew Street, Glasgow G2 3DB

Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Castle Grounds, Cathays Park, Cardiff CF10 3ER
SLP College Leeds, 5 Chapel Lane, Garforth, Leeds LS25 1AG

Stella Mann College, 10 Linden Road, Bedford MK40 2DA 

Susi Earnshaw Theatre School, The Bull Theatre, 68 High Street, Barnet, Herts EN5 5SJ

Sylvia Young Theatre School, 1 Nutford Place, London W1H 5YZ

The Associated Studios, The Riverside Studios, Crisp Road, Hammersmith, London W6 9RL

The MGA Academy of Performing Arts, 207 Balgreen Road, Edinburgh EH11 2RZ

The Musical Theatre Academy, 89 Holloway Road, London N7 8LT

The Oxford School of Drama, Sansomes Farm Studios, Woodstock OX20 1ER

Urdang Academy, The Old Finsbury Town Hall, Rosebery Avenue, London EC1R 4RP

WAC Performing Arts and Media College, Hampstead Town Hall Centre, 213 Haverstock Hill, London NW3 4QP


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