Musical Theatre Audition Songs – Choices for Mezzo Soprano

Musical Theatre Audition Songs - Choices for Mezzo Soprano_550
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When choosing an audition song to sing at a musical theatre audition it is vital that you not only choose a song from your range but you also seriously consider your own acting range and the type of character you are auditioning for. So often I hear tales of someone auditioning to play something like Maria from the Sound of Music with a sexy sassy song from Rent (well thats an extreme example but you get my drift!)
This list of songs are all very character and story driven so choose wisely.
It is vital that when auditioning for a part in a musical you are showing off your acting ability just as much as your singing. Directors love working with actors, with actor-singers, if they just wanted a cast of singers then they would go with classically trained singers who have dedicated years to perfecting a classical sound which will be faithful to the notes on the staves and bring no character to the song.
You can bring your character and acting to your singing – don’t leave it at home!
Mezzo-Soprano Songs for Auditions
I always recommend you approach any audition song as a monologue first. Try learning it as a speech and acting it without music first. Get inside the character and situation which is driving the song before you approach the singing of it. I really believe this method gives you a tremendous head start when you begin putting the words to music.

We would love to know what your favourite mezzo-soprano song for auditioning is, let us know via Twitter @actorhub.

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  • This song is from the ever popular musical The Sound Of Music.
    In the original Broadway musical this song took place in the Mother Abbess’s office just beofre Maria is sent away to Captain Von Trapp’s house to work as governess to his seven children. In the hugely popular movie version the song is moved to Maria’s bedroom where she sings it to comfort the children who are afraid of the thunderstorm – in the stage version she sang Lonely Goatherd. Most stage productions nowadays replicate the film’s version.
    The happy, optimistic lyrics are a counterpoint to cover up an undercurrent of fear. The song was written to be sung by a young woman scared of facing new responsibilities outside the convent.
    The song is a complete ‘classic’ and is often sung as a Christmas song thanks to it’s wintery lyrics.
  • South Pacific is a musical by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II it premiered in 1949 on Broadway, and there is a much loved 1958 film.
    The musical is set on a South Pacific island during World War II. Nellie Forbush, a nurse for the US Navy has fallen in love with Emile a French plantation owner who she has only known briefly. Everyone is worried about the outcome of the war but Nellie tells Emile that she believes everything will be alright with this song.
    A sweet song which lets you play with the upbeat bubbly character of Nellie. The sentiment of the song is that she is keeping hope when no-one else does, and that is an emotion which every actor should be able to empathise with.
  • Flaherty and Ahrens took inspiration from the novel My Love, My Love by Rosa Guy and also sprinkled in some elements from Romeo and Juliet.
    The story concerns a peasant girl on a tropical island in the Caribbean Sea, who uses the power of love to bring together people of different social classes.
    Waiting For Life is sung by the lead character Ti Moune. She is a peasant girl and in this song (early on in the show) she prays to the Gods to let her know her purpose in life and to let her be like the ‘grandes homme’ (people from the city) she has encountered racing past in their white cars.
    A song full of innocence but bursting with desire to be something better than you are today – perfect for a casting.
    ” Even the fish in the sea – Must be longing to fly – Catching a glimpse of a stranger – In white racing by.”
  • Not For The Life of Me is from the 2000 stage musical Thoroughly Modern Millie based on the 1967 movie. The story is set in 1922 and tells of a small town girl Millie Dillmount who has come to New York to marry for money instead of love – a thorougly modern approach! She falls in love with the flapper lifetsyle and gets caught up with a white slavery ring in China! The show is very tongue in cheek and a complete pastiche.
    This number opens the show and is sung by Millie as she arrives at NYC train station from Kansas and tears up her return ticket!
    It is a classic ‘I wish’ song and is very popular for auditions for that reason.
  • The 1957 musical The Music Man is all about a con man who poses as a band organiser and sells instruments to the townsfolk of a small town promising to train them up as a band, he has no intention of doing this and plans to skip town with their money. A prim piano teacher Marian sees through him, but falls in love with him.
    Till There Was You is sung by librarian and piano teacher Marian Paroo to con man Harold Hill in Act Two when she confesses her love and tells him of the differences he has made in her life.
    The song was perhaps the first ‘hit single’ from a musical and was made famous in the sixties by the young Nana Mouskouri closely followed by The Beatles!
  • A song which is full of deep emotion.
    The song is sung by a young girl who has discovered she is pregnant, from the lyrics I would imagine she is alone in the world. This girl finds grace in her situation, she feels worth for the first time in her life. She is bringing another person into this world, a person who perhaps can make a difference like she could not.
    I would recommend this song is sung with innocence and honesty, no edges no tricks, just sung simply. I also suggest that this could be sung to the unborn child and that way you might tap into the correct emotion.
  • Passion is a wonderful Sondheim musical adapted from an italian film Passione D’Amore. It explores the theme of love also touching on obsession, beauty, sex, power and manipulation.
    ‘Loving You’ is a beautiful song sung by the ailing and plain Fosca who has fallen in love with the young soldier Georgio. He does not love her and pleads with her to give him up and with this song she explains that hers is not a love she is able to ‘give up’. Her love is not a choice, it is who she is, all she is, and she would gladly die for him.
    ‘This is why I live, You are why I live’
  • And I Will Follow.
    This song isn’t from a show, it comes from Jason Robert Brown’s solo album, so you could interpret it how you wish. Really dig into the lyrics and find the story behind the song. Make sure you have a clear story and a clear character so that you can showcase your acting skills.
    This song isn’t from a show, it comes from Jason Robert Brown’s solo album, so you could interpret it how you wish. Really dig into the lyrics and find the story behind the song. For me it is about a woman keeping her vow, you need to work out her vow to who or what, sometimes as an actor it is worth not going for the obvious and seeing how that changes the delivery.
  • Sooner or Later comes from the movie Dick Tracy and is one of the songs which Sondheim wrote for Madonna’s character Breathless Mahoney, a seductive and sultry singer from Club Ritz.
    The song oozes sex appeal as Breathless is desperately trying to seduce Dick throughout the movie, however the double meaning of the song refers to Dick Tracy and how he ‘always gets his man’ ie: he always captures the bad guy.
    Reveal your inner vamp and sexy side and play with the double entendre’s and enjoy it!
    “And no one I’ve kissed, babe, ever fights me again. If you’re on my list, it’s just a question of when.”
  • This beautiful song is taken from the musical Tales From The Bad Years by contemporary musical theatre writers Kait Kerrigan and Brian Lowdermilk.
    The show is about a group of acquaintances and strangers who are entering their twenties with great expectations. Over the show they connect, meet, argue, fall in love and collide with each other until they start to grow up and realise that the bad years make the best stories.
    The song is about the mixed emotions felt when you have to return to your family home after you feel you have ‘failed’. This is surely a feeling that we have all experienced at some point in our lives.
    The song can be powered out and you can choose to give it some real belt moments, or you could keep all the emotions controlled and play it much smaller and really try to internalise the emotional content and give a more ‘real’ performance than you often see in musical theatre.
    “The house is pulsing with an alien heartbeat, Was it always here but you never listened?
    It’s calling you to be the girl that you were way back then… again.”