How to not be nervous for a music audition?

In this guide, we will discuss “How to not be nervous for a music audition” and a few tips on how you could manage your nerves during a music audition such as being prepared, knowing that it is OK to make mistakes, doing things to take your mind off the audition and some additional considerations.

How to not be nervous for a music audition?

You may wonder ‘How to not be nervous for a music audition?’ Well, let’s start by saying that being nervous is completely normal and part of our lives so you are not alone. However, when we may have associated being nervous as something bad because of negative experiences that happened because of it and now we try to fight as much as we can with the feeling. It is important to understand that we may not be able to get rid of being nervous entirely but we can learn to cope with the feeling and use it to our advantage. 

As we have mentioned, being nervous is not a feeling we need to fight, on the contrary, once we learn to accept it and understand why it happens will give us the possibility of experiencing stressful moments in life, in a different way. In this sense, have you ever thought about why you get nervous? Have you noticed if it happens during certain circumstances or you feel nervous most of the time?

Now, let’s think about your favorite musicians, actors and actresses. Do you think they were not nervous during their first audition? They were and the truth is that this happens to everyone. Moreover, being nervous has nothing to do with your ability, talent or your potential as a musician. 

If you feel nervous when you are about to perform we could say you are experiencing performance anxiety but if it is most of the time, you could be experiencing Generalized Anxiety Disorder. If you feel your anxiety is too overwhelming and it is interfering with your day to day activities, we recommend visiting a mental health professional for further assessment.

How can I overcome nerves?

When we are nervous we start having these thoughts about how we could forget the song or how we could be out of tune because we keep trembling or how we could freeze in front of the judges because we feel so terrified and intimidated. We could also feel that we may not be good enough or we might even be afraid about what the panel could think of us. But what can you do to manage your nerves? Let’s take a look at some tips.

Be prepared

Being prepared means you have rehearsed your audition piece so well that you could even do it without thinking too much about it. However, if you don’t feel confident enough then nerves can quickly take over and you might end up paralized or struggling to remember a particular line or set of lyrics. But rehearsing to the point of exhaustion will not be effective unless you believe in yourself.

When preparing, you could try to practice in front of other people, try to engage friends and relatives to listen to your song or piece. Also, try to incorporate breathing exercises as soon as you start feeling nervous or anxious, the more you practice them, the easier it gets to incorporate them in a real life situation such as your audition. 

It is OK to make a mistake

Making a mistake can make us feel as if we are a failure but if you have been preparing your audition for quite some time and you have been rehearsing then remember that mistakes happen all the time, it can happen to anyone. But even if you have practiced every day and every night for the last 6 months, there is a possibility that you may forget the lyric or get off tempo. If this happens just try to remain calm, breathe and keep going. 

Moreover, you can plan ahead what you would do if you make a mistake. After rehearsing, decide what you will do if you forget the lyrics or if you hit a wrong note. If you feel you are prepared then you are less likely to make a mistake but if you do, having an action plan would be very useful. 

Get your mind off the audition

If all you can think about is the audition then you will get more nervous and start feeding your nerves, building up your anxiety. This will cause a release of adrenaline and you might feel as if you need to get rid of all the energy. You could try releasing the energy by exercising but without exceeding yourself. Maybe try to jog a little or go for a walk. 

Moreover, to take your mind off the audition try doing something you like, for instance, reading, shopping, painting, etc. 

It goes quicker than you think

If you are nervous, you might feel as if your audition is taking forever but when you flip the switch and tell yourself you are going to have fun and enjoy no matter the outcome then it will go quicker than you think. The judges will start by making some questions and then they will essentially wait for you to start, take a deep breath, smile and focus on a single element in the room or if it makes you feel more confident then start by closing your eyes and feeling the music. 

Try to take your time to start. It is very unlikely for the panel to tell you to hurry up and even if they do, feel confident enough to ask for a minute if you need it.  Doesn’t matter if it is your first, second or even third audition, just try to enjoy it and have fun.

Avoid caffeine and other substances before the audition

Certain substances such as caffeine can increase your anxiety so avoid beverages such as coffee or soda. Moreover, you might think it is a good idea to take something to relax or use illegal substances but remember they may make you feel very sleepy which can end up being counterproductive for your audition.

Recover and keep going

If you have had a bad experience during an audition don’t be discouraged and remember that even the rich and famous have had such experiences in the past. Also, if you have been told you lack talent or you are nor good enough, don’t let it be something that defines you, keep trying. 

However, we know it might not be easy to recover from a particular audition but the quicker you stop thinking about the past then you can concentrate on your next audition. Also, if you think you could have done better at an audition or you may have made a mistake then instead of concentrating on what you did wrong, think about what you could do differently next time.

Why is this blog about How to not be nervous for a music audition important?

As we have discussed on ‘how to not be nervous for a music audition’, being nervous is normal but when we let our nerves interfere significantly with our lives then that is when we need to consider looking out for some help. In addition, we have talked about how there are a few things that we could do to manage our nerves such as preparing ourselves by rehearsing and practicing as much as we need but considering how we need to be confident about our skills. Also, remember that making a mistake is OK and try to come up with a plan if this happens.

Finally, there is a possibility you may have bad auditions but try to recover and keep going, a few bad experiences shouldn’t discourage you, on the contrary, will let you get better in time.. Try to enjoy and have fun!

Please feel free to leave any comments or thoughts about the content of this article!

Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.

What we recommend for curbing Anxiety

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Online Therapy

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about How to not be nervous for a music audition

How do I calm my nerves for an audition?

If you would like to calm your nerves for an audition, here are some recommendations:

– Put on some relaxing music.

– Engage in deep breathing.

– Be prepared for your audition.

– Visualize your success after the audition.

– Be confident and trust your skills.

How do I calm my nerves before a music performance?

If you need to calm your nerves before a music performance or you suffer from performance anxiety, here are some tips:

– Be prepared for your audition, this means practice, practice and practice.

– Limit your caffeine and sugar intake the day of your performance since it can increase anxiety symptoms.

– Find a focus point during your audition.

– Use positive self-talk to remove the focus on what could go wrong.

– Believe in yourself and your skills.

What should you do before a music audition?

Here are some tips before a music audition:

– Go into your audition prepared by performing your audition piece(s) as many times as you can before your audition. 

– Study your school’s audition requirements carefully or know your judging panel.

– Be confident and set yourself for success.

– Expect the unexpected and don’t be discouraged if you make a mistake.

How do you win an audition?

If you want to win an audition remember you will be judged not only on your talent but also your character, confidence, personality, connection with the panel, passion and having a good audition piece that highlights how talented and original you are interpreting this piece or pieces. Moreover, remember to smile, focus on a single thing in the room, have fun and enjoy it.

What is the best color to wear to an audition?

The best color to wear to an audition would be those that will look good with your skin tone and hair. Colors that may leave an impression are red, blue and salmon but make sure you are dressed to impress without being exaggerated or too over the top. Most importantly, dress appropriately and according to what the audition requires. 

References “How to Calm Your Nerves Before Your Music Audition”