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How to make a great audition video

HomeMusicBritten–Pears Young Artist ProgrammeHow to make a great audition video

All musicians who apply to the Britten–Pears Young Artist Programme need to make an audition video.

Don’t worry if you can’t get professional help doing this, and don’t feel you need to source lots of specialist equipment – in fact, you can make an excellent audition with just a couple of smartphones and some careful planning.

So once you’ve prepared your audition thoroughly, here’s a quick guide to get you started.

Current courses

Equipment

Essential 

  1. Video recording device (phone, tablet, camera, webcam)
  2. Basic video editing software (iMovie, Windows Moviemaker)

Ideal

  1. A separate device to record audio (microphone, Zoom, phone, tablet)
  2. Tripod

Top tip

Speak to your college department’s administrator or technical team, conservatoires often have equipment available to loan, or specially-set up rooms to record in. Better still, buddy up with someone else who’s applying and help each other out!

Making your recording

  1. Find a friend to be your cameraperson/button presser
  2. Find a quiet room that you can use for 30 mins – 1 hour without interruption
  3. Think about your lighting – natural light is best, ideally side-on to a window. If you have a lot of light coming from behind you, you’ll be much harder to see in the final recording
  4. Setup your video device and make sure you are clearly in shot
  5. Tidy up the space behind you if it needs it (clutter can distract visually)
  6. If using an audio device as well, set this up a sensible distance away. Making a couple of test recordings should help you find the right balance of being loud enough without distorting.

Record your intro, excerpts and pieces. This year, we are asking that you record all performed elements in one go rather than cut several takes together (this doesn’t mean you can’t make a few attempts and submit the best one). Try to approach it as a simulated live audition – small imperfections are less important than the overall picture presented! 

Top tip If recording on two devices, clap your hands before you start to make a clear sound that can be used to sync together the audio and video.

Editing your recording

  1. Stitch together the audio/video in your editing software (also add your intro if it was recorded separately)
  2. Rewatch to make you sure are happy with your performance, and double check it includes all required elements within the time limit
  3. Add any finishing touches – simple captions are fine, but don’t overshadow your performance with fancy presentation
  4. Upload your video to Acceptd!

Summary

A good recording will help show you at your best, but do remember we don’t select Britten–Pears Young Artists on the basis of video quality – we’re more interested in you than the camera you used! See our round-up of 2017 applications for some examples of audition videos.

We hope you found this guide useful. If you’re stuck with anything regarding your application, please get in touch on britten-pears@snapemaltings.co.uk, via our Twitter @BrittenPears, or over the phone on +44 (0) 1728 687100.

BPYAP 2017 Auditions