Professional orchestral auditions for trumpet: criteria for evaluation of candidates, common mistakes and concerns, and a discussion of the top fifteen excerpts asked at auditions
Every year hundreds of aspiring musicians audition for positions with professional orchestras throughout the United States. This study is designed to provide a comprehensive look at professional orchestral auditions for trumpet. While other resources rely on the single opinion of their author, this study gathers information from a broad range of sources to develop its conclusions. This project was completed in three phases. In the first phase, lists of excerpts from trumpet auditions were compiled. In the second phase, an online survey of musicians who have served on a trumpet audition committee was conducted. In the final phase, four principal trumpet players of major orchestras and one conductor were interviewed to look further into the criteria and procedures used in orchestral trumpet auditions. The results of this study can be grouped into four categories: the desired qualities sought in a trumpet audition, common mistakes and concerns for those taking auditions, common mistakes and concerns for audition committees, and a discussion of the top fifteen excerpts asked in auditions. The data from this study can be used to consider two different perspectives: what does an aspiring trumpet player need to do to win an audition? And also, what should a committee want to hear? Although there is a broad range of opinion when considering trumpet auditions, certain standards remain. Also, while most of those involved in this study agree that the audition process is among the fairest ways to determine the winner of a job with an orchestra, they also agree that significant changes to the process still need to be made. This is especially true with reference to the types of excerpts asked and the audition procedures used.