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All State Band Recordings

Saxophone

Junior Saxophone: Audition Solo 1A, Allegretto

  • In general, all notes a quarter-note or longer should have vibrato in this piece.
    In measure #2: add the low "C" key at the beginning of the measure on the half-note, "A."  This will make the slur down to the low "C" much easier.  Also be sure not to drop your jaw for the low note, as that will make it louder and less likely to blend with the previous note.
  • Intonation will be an important factor in the audition.  Listen carefully to the high notes especially to make sure they don't go sharp. 
  • In measure #9: lift only 2 fingers for the C#s on beat 1 – the "B" and "A" keys (1+2).    Hold down the octave key, G key and the entire right hand.  This will smooth out the timbre between the C#s and the Ds. 
  • at measure #9-12, remember that "piano" is very different from the previous volume and the one that begins in measure 13.  Even with the crescendo, keep a soft color in your tone so the contrast in measure 13 is more evident.

Clinic Saxophone: Audition Solo 2A, Allegro con grazia

  • Intonation will be an important factor in the audition.  Listen carefully to the high notes especially to make sure they don't go sharp.  (especially the C# at the end of measure 16, all of measure 27, etc.)
  • In measure 3, make sure to pull through the dotted quarter-note so it leads to the next measure.  Don't let it diminuendo, as that will keep the phrase from flowing to the end.
  • In measure 21, use the "G" key and octave key for the middle C#.  This will raise the pitch and take out some of the nasal quality that can occur on this note.  I would personally use this fingering on all the middle C#s in measures 21-24.
  • Ending A:  make sure of the notes in measures 33-36.  There are a number of accidentals, and you need to be sure of when they carry through a measure and when the next measure cancels them out. 
  • Ending B:  same advice about accidentals, especially in measures 44-47.

Senior Saxophone: Audition Solo 3A, Larghetto e cantabile

  • Intonation will be an important factor in the audition.  Listen carefully to the high notes especially to make sure they don't go sharp.  (the C# in measure 5, the D in measure 7, etc.)
  • Use plenty of vibrato in the slow opening section.  Vibrato will help the piece sound more cantabile.
  • At Measure 9, practice for evenness of the notes rhythmically.  It is very easy to play one note or another a little too quickly.  Practice to keep tension out of the right hand especially.  This will help with the evenness.
  • When switching from eighth notes or sixteenth notes to triplets and back, be sure of your sub-division so the overall tempo does not change.  The tendency is to rush the new pattern – both the triplets and the 16th notes.  If anything, stretch the first note of the triplet.  This will sound more musical and keep you from rushing.
  • Keep the grace notes in the slow section quick, but light and graceful.  They should not interrupt the overall mood of the section.
  • For middle C#, try adding the octave key and the LH "G" key (some call it "3").  This will raise the pitch and match the tone color with the upper register more closely than the standard fingering.
  • In the 5/8 section, keep the eighth notes the same as the previous section. If you subdivide the last measure of the 4/4 in eighth notes, you will be able to maintain that tempo more precisely.

Download the performance notes [pdf].