Audition Repertoire

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    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #150958

    What used to be the standard audition repertoire for orchestras has expanded over the years, and with opera or ballet orchestras it is a whole other set of pieces sometimes. Here are the ones I recall.

    Berlioz: Symphony Fantastique

    Weber/Berlioz: Invitation to the Dance

    Tchaikovsky: cadenzas

    Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio Espagnole, Scheherazade

    Bartok: Concerto for Orchestra, sometimes the Violin Concerto and Miraculous Mandarin

    Wagner: Magic Fire Music, Tannhauser, Overture to the Flying Dutchman

    Strauss: Don Juan, Death and Transfiguration, sometime Ein Heldenleben

    Prokofiev: Violin Concerto

    Sibelius: First Symphony

    Debussy: Iberia, Afternoon of a Faun, Danses Sacree et Profane

    Ravel: Piano Concerto in G, Introduction et Allegro

    Mozart: Flute and Harp Concerto

    Schubert: Die Zauberharfe (never, but it should be)

    Britten: Young Person’s Guide

    Berg: Lulu, Wozzeck (for the Met)

    Verdi: Overture to La Forza del Destino and Pace, Pace

    Franck: Symphony in D Minor

    Liszt: Orpheus

    Bruckner: 8th Symphony

    Stravinsky: Symphony in Three Movements, Petrouchka, Firebird, Le Rossignol, etc.

    And you need to know the second harp parts as well.

    Add yours.

    Fearghal McCartan on #150959

    Bartok – Music for String Instruments , Percussion and Celeste

    Smetana – Vysehrad (opening cadenza)

    Ravel – Tzigane

    Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana

    Massenet – Le Cid (excerpts)

    Fearghal McCartan on #150960

    Also forgot:

    Ravel – Ma Mere l’Oye

    Donizetti – Lucia di Lammermoor (solo)

    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #150961

    That reminds me that there may be significant differences between American and European orchestras. I think American orchestras tend to ask for a lot more.

    Fearghal McCartan on #150962

    We do get the Berlioz Symph Fantastic, Tchaikovsky Cadenzas, Britten’s YPGTTO and some of the others as well.

    In what way ask for more – the playing standard or the broadness of the repertoire?

    Fearghal McCartan on #150963

    Sorry, with original post I meant those pieces in addition to the ones you had listed.


    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #150964

    I mean most of the auditions here since the early 1990s have had enormous repertoire lists plus concerti and solos. Orchestras seem to use audition lists to pump their institutional egos and show how important they are no matter where they may be located. San Diego, for example, had a quite hefty list.

    Elizabeth Volpé Bligh on #150965

    This is the European excerpt list from Lieve Robbroeckx’s panel discussion at the World Harp Congress in Amsterdam. As you can see, there is some overlap with the North American list.

    Bartok: Concerto for Orchestra, Violin Concerto no 2
    Berlioz: Symphony Fantastique, L’Enfance du Christ, Harold in Italy
    Britten: Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra
    Bruch: Scottish Fantasy
    Bruckner: Symphony 8
    Debussy: La Mer
    Debussy: Prelude à l’ Après Midi d’un Faune
    Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor cadenza
    Dvorak: Scherzo Capriccioso
    Elgar: The Dream of Gerontius
    Franck: Symphony in d
    Mahler: Adagietto
    Mascagni: Cavalleria Rusticana
    Prokofiev: Violin Concerto no 1
    Ravel: Piano concerto in G cadenza,
    Ravel: Alborada del Gracioso
    Ravel: Ma Mère l’Oye
    Ravel: Tzigane cadenza
    Smetana: Vysehrad cadenza
    Strauss: Don Juan
    Strauss: Heldenleben
    Strauss: Salomes Tanz
    Stravinsky: Symphony
    Stravinsky: Petruschka
    Tchaikovsky: Waltz of the flowers cadenza
    Tchaikovsky: Swan Lake cadenza
    Tchaikovsky: Sleeping Beauty cadenza
    Verdi: La Forza del Destino Overture
    Von Weber: Aufforderung zum Tanz
    Wagner: Tannhäuser
    Wagner: Götterdämmerung
    Wagner: Isoldes Liebestod
    Wagner: Die Walküre

    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #150966

    I have compiled some data from the auditions I have participated in or monitored, all in the U.S., including at least one for a foreign orchestra, and this is the most frequently called-for repertoire in order of appearance:

    12 times: Berlioz Symphony Fantastique THE CHAMPION!!!

    9 times:

    Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio Espagnole

    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #150967

    Ah, yes, I forgot about Salome!

    Several of the parts you mention, Clint, are available for purchase from Lyra, or were when I needed them. We would have been in real trouble without them!

    Opera parts can be particularly demanding.

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