By Lis Lewis
I was the vocal coach for two singers who were on a recent season of The Voice and several others from prior seasons. After watching them go through the audition process I have some thoughts about how to survive and endure.
Pick songs that reflect your personality. Just because you like a song doesn’t mean it shows who you are. Also prepare a lot of songs; they might throw something at you at the last minute.
As a contestant on the show, you aren’t just a singer. You are a character and a story. Try to shape that story yourself so you have some control of it. Rather than being the guy whose wife left him, try making it positive – the guy who turned his life around. Adversity in life makes good television but don’t be a victim. Phillip Phillips, who won last season on American Idol, had multiple surgeries while on the show, but that was never part of his story.
The audition process is high stress. Get enough sleep, eat at regular intervals (bring snacks), dress in layers (you might be waiting in line outside) and most of all prepare. Know your songs, practice being interviewed, warm up your voice and then let go and show them who you are.
It’s hard not to take it personally if they don’t pick you. Your goal should be to do your personal best whether you’re chosen or not. You don’t know what they’re looking for – they may already have picked their ‘rocker Mom’, or their ‘soulful country’ voice. All you can do is be the most authentic ‘you’ you can be.