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How to Build the Singer's Utility Belt

“Holy High C, Batman!”

Batman and Robin, among many other superheroes, have utility belts that hold gadgets to combat their foes despite difficult or odd circumstances. Even our fellow high-pitched superhero, Black Canary, has one. Like superheroes, we singers need to make sure we have all the gadgets and tools we need to survive in our ever-changing industry. Here, we’ll cover everything you need in your audition day kit and how to assemble your utility belt with the best technology Wayne Industries can offer.

Everyday Gadgets

You never know what obstacles you'll face or who you'll need to save on a daily basis.

  • Resumes - Make sure you have resumes on you at all times. This is your way to give others an idea of your voice and repertoire. You know as well as any other singer how important this is.

  • Headshots - Always have one on your person, even if you don’t think you’ll be auditioning for anyone that day. Maybe have two, just in case, as it’s never a bad idea to have a couple of good headshots lying around.

  • Website - While you don’t necessarily carry it on your person, having your website current and updated is an easy and accessible resource. Have your resume, current media, and contact form at the ready.

  • Business Cards - I cannot begin to tell you how important this is. You can be asked for your contact information in the most unusual circumstances. Having your contact information and website updated and ready is paramount. With one business card, you can replace multiple documents and make a lasting impression.

  • Calendar - It's important to know what gigs and auditions you have coming up as well as any deadlines for applications and repertoire to be learned.

Audition Missions

Days like these are where you have to Mr. Freeze the audition panel with your arsenal of organizational skills along with your voice.

  • Daily List - I recommend making a list before the day of your audition of everything you need for the big day. Write down the materials, location of the audition, available practice spaces, people or places you’ll need to check in with, the time of your audition, and anything else that comes to mind. On that note, start assembling your supplies ahead of time as well. It’s never a good idea to get your outfit, music, paperwork, and whatever else you need together the morning of. Something wacky is bound to happen or you might end up rushing out of the house and forgetting something.

  • Audition Music Binder - Make sure you have cleanly marked copies of your entire audition repertoire. No one wants to see a binder that is visibly worn and music that is rumpled or torn. Make sure you have all of the correct selections in the binder as well; I can’t begin to tell you how terrible it is to realize right before an audition you don’t have the music you thought you would sing.

  • Resumes - I would recommend having at least three to four resumes for every audition you have on that day plus three extras. Alternatively, have one resume per panel member, if you have been given that information ahead of time, plus the three extra copies.

  • Audition Repertoire List and Headshots - Similarly, have one full-size headshot/repertoire list per audition plus one extra. You never know if you’ll lose one or if a panel will ask for another copy for their records.

How to Assemble Your Superhero Gadgets and Utility Belt

Alfred does more than clean up after Bruce Wayne. He makes sure he looks good and doesn't go hungry whenever the mask and cape aren't being worn.

  • Headshots - Get a professional photographer to do your headshots. As a panelist for auditions, it’s easy to tell an amateur headshot from a phone versus a professional heatshot taken with proper higher-end equipment, lighting, and background. It’s a good idea to have your head take up about 1/3 of the shot and have a non-distracting background.

  • Resume - Make sure it’s updated and organized efficiently and pleasantly. That’s all any panelist will ask for. Never lie on your resume to fill it out either. Have your headshot in the corner and current contact information.

  • Website - Make sure it’s updated and easy to navigate. Any audio or visual media should sound and look like you in your current career. Speaking of which…

  • Recordings - Just like headshots, try and make professional recordings if possible. Many applications encourage iPhone videos, and that’s great for all of us non-recording-savy folk, but be sure to stabilize your camera or audio recorder to get the best quality possible with the equipment you can secure. Get help making intro and outro cuts if you need, and be confident, clear, and perform your best. The summer season is a great time to make these before audition season or school becomes too hectic.

  • Business Cards - With services like Vistaprint and Moo, getting professional-grade business cards has never been so easy. You can often find great introductory deals on your first order of cards. Include your website, contact information, fach, and other relevant job information, along with your best headshot to put your best foot (or face) forward!

Do you feel ready to take on the forces of evil? Or at the least the forces of audition panels and come out on top? Did we miss anything in your kit that you swear by? Let us know what’s in your utility belt in the comments below. Singers unite!

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