Jazz Port Townsend Auditions

  • Deadline for Priority applications and Financial Aid applications is April 6, 2018
    Notification for Priority applicants is May 7
  • Applications and Financial Aid requests received after April 6 will be notified on a rolling basis if space and funds remain, and applicants will be notified as soon as possible.
  • A $200 deposit is due with your application
  • If you are not accepted your full deposit will be refunded

Auditions are required for workshop participants in Jazz Port Townsend*. Please start by reading “Audition Recording Instructions for Instrumentalists and Vocalists” (below).

*Applicants for the Educator Track do not need to submit an audition.

Why auditions? At the Workshop you will be placed in combos or groups with other instrumentalists or singers. We expect a wide range of abilities in the workshop. We want to make the experience as dynamic and well matched as possible, and auditions help us do that. Our audition guidelines will tell you exactly what you need to do.

All applicants, including past participants, must submit an audition recording and an audition form. This recording is required regardless of age or musical experience, and should be a reflection of your current work. Acceptance to Centrum’s Port Townsend Jazz Workshop is based on these audition materials. The sooner you send in your audition materials, the sooner we can confirm your acceptance.

Auditions are due April 6, 2018 and sooner is better. Some instruments—especially piano—will have more applicants than we have room for. Available spots will be open until filled. Submitting your audition by April 6 does not guarantee placement in the workshop.

  1. To submit your audition you must first register for the workshop.
  2. Next, download the audition packet for your instrument (below), and follow instructions completely. Flute, clarinet and mallets please use the Sax link.

Audition Packets

If you have any questions about the audition process, please contact Gregg Miller, 360 385-3102 x109, or e-mail gmiller@centrum.org.

Audition Recording Instructions For Instrumentalists and Vocalists

Submitting Your Audition

  • You must first apply for the workshop.
  • After applying you will receive an email that includes login instructions to upload your audition form.
  • You then need to 1) login per those instructions; 2) fill out the requested information; 3) upload your audition recordings. NOTE: A maximum of 6 files can be uploaded. You will need to include several scales and arpeggios in one take to accomplish this.
  • All recordings need to be in MP3 format or we won’t be able to hear them (see Tips On Creating MP3 Filesbelow). Note: simply typing “.MP3” at the end of a file’s name does not make it an MP3 file!
  • Follow instructions carefully and remember to name all of your files in the following format: Lastname-Firstname-Instrument-#.mp3 (for example, Armstrong-Louis-Trumpet-1.mp3, Armstrong-Louis-Trumpet-2.mp3, Armstrong-Louis-Trumpet-3.mp3, etc.)
  • If you have any questions, please contact Gregg Miller, 360.385.3102 x109.

You may find it helpful to visit the Jazz Night School’s website to hear recordings of the audition tunes. Many thanks to the Jazz Night School for compiling these!

Instrument-specific guidelines plus scales, musical samples, and a song resource list are in the link for your particular instrument or voice.

Use of play-along recordings (e.g. Aebersold) is acceptable if it’s not possible to play with live musicians. Improvised solos are required. If you’re not yet able to do this, you will probably be placed in one of our beginning combos, where you can begin to learn how to improvise.

The recording quality is not critical, as long as you are clearly audible. Simple home recordings on most smart phones are perfectly adequate.

Please note that this year we’re once again offering a special opportunity to audition for a “themed” (upper level) combo focusing on the music of a particular composer. Information on how to audition for these are on your audition form.

Additional live instrumental auditions for combo placement may be requested of some applicants for final placement. You will be notified if you’ll be asked to do a live audition.

If you have questions about the audition information, please contact the Jazz Program Manager, Gregg Miller, at 360.385.3102 x109, or gmiller@centrum.org.

Tips For Creating MP3 Files. If you’re not quite sure what this means, don’t worry. It’s not as complicated as it sounds! First you’ll need to create a digital recording of your audition in MP3 format. You don’t need sophisticated recording equipment or knowledge. iPhones and other similar devices make good recordings onto your phone and can save them as MP3’s right away. Note: if you upload your files into iTunes it will automatically translate them into m4a format. M4a is the default format for iTunes files and we can’t use it. However, you can create MP3 files by burning your files to a disc (selecting MP3 CD as the disc format) and uploading the file from there. Or see the instructions below about using Zamzar.com.

If you’re using a recorder that creates files other than MP3’s see below for help in translating them through Zamzar.com. There are lots of good programs you can download for free that make it easy for you to record on your computer. One of our favorites is Audacity, available at http://audacity.sourceforge.net, which will record you in MP3 format. Don’t submit your audition in anything but MP3 format—we won’t be able to hear it.

When you record, start by placing your device or mic c. 6 – 8 feet away from you, or possibly more if you’re playing with other people. Experiment with different placements to see what sounds the best. Remember, you need to be clearly heard—it’s YOUR audition!

If your recording device and/or software doesn’t automatically save your audition as an MP3 file (ending in .mp3) you’ll need to save it in that format. If you have Windows Media Player on your computer it will automatically create MP3’s for you. Label your file as follows; Lastname-Firstname-Instrument-1.mp3 (for example, Armstrong-Louis-Trumpet-1.mp3, Armstrong-Louis-Trumpet-2.mp3, Armstrong-Louis-Trumpet-3.mp3, etc.).

If your recordings are in a different format (.aac, .wav, .m4a etc.) you can easily translate them into MP3’s. Zamzar.com is a very handy, free website where you can quickly translate files into lots of different formats. Just follow the easy instructions and save yours as an MP3 file, then Zamzar will email it back to you. There are other sites with similar procedures as well.

We look forward to receiving your audition!