Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by Cucco, Jul 2, 2005.

  1. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Mar 8, 2004
    Tacoma, WA
    Hey guys!

    If you're not already familiar with this site, it's an awesome one to keep bookmarked. It has more vacancies posted than International Musician!!

    BTW, there was a great (depending on view point) article posted in their forums that I just felt the need to reply to. Feel free to check it out.

  2. JoeH

    JoeH Well-Known Member

    Jun 22, 2004
    Philadelphia, PA/ Greenville, DE
    Home Page:

    Thanks for the tip, I'm adding this to my list of favorites. (Nice of you to put Philadelphia on the top of your referral list, too! :twisted: )
  3. Plush

    Plush Guest

    Very good idea!

    I would, of course, be pleased to make a good recording for anyone in the Chicago area.

    All the best,

  4. FifthCircle

    FifthCircle Well-Known Member

    Feb 12, 2001
    Los Angeles, CA
    Home Page:
    Interesting Site... Thanks for the link Jeremy. Or no thanks- yet another forum to participate in, ugh.... Looks to be a pretty cool one, though. Just found out news about one of my classmates from Eastman. He's the new principal trumpet in Chicago.

  5. MyAuditions

    MyAuditions Guest

    MyAuditions Audition Tour


    Thank you for notifying your members about MyAuditions. For the last year, we have been discussing the possibility of doing an audition tour to enable our 5,500+ job seekers the opportunity to record their repertoire and upload it to their account. The technology has already been developed on our site.

    Our initial plan was to hire a recording engineer to accompany us on scheduled dates at points throughout the US but we realize that there would have to be a limit on the number of recordings per location. So, perhaps we can create a larger pool of job seekers by working with local recording studios.

    So, we would be very interested to hear your ideas on how we may work together to:

    1. Provide job seekers the opportunity to record their repertoire at your recording studio.
    2. Certify the recording process.
    3. Upload the recordings to the individual job seeker's account.
    4. What the recording fees would be for 30-minute session.

    Below is our initial structure of how we envision the process. We would welcome your feedback.

    Kind Regards,

    Jack Reynolds, Manager/Community Programs
    Performing Arts Career Resources


    Attending auditions can be a challenging time for any player. Once open positions are publicly announced, the process of submitting a resume and waiting for a response can be a stressful time.

    The decision to invite a player to preliminary rounds is, for the most part, judged solely on the credentials of the player’s resume. Often, the resume is not a true reflection of the player’s ability and skill level. The playing ability may exceed the resume credentials or the credentials while impressive, does not meet the expectations of the audition committee. Without a full assessment of both, an audition committee cannot adequately judge a player solely on what appears on the resume. The result – missed opportunities with highly qualified talented players and an overabundance of unqualified players burdened with the high costs of attending live auditions for which they have little chance of winning the open position.

    MyAuditions Audio Services offers employers a more fair and balanced approach to judging players overall abilities by offering resumes with professionally recorded audio excerpts.From the moment resumes are received to the time invitations are extended, MyAuditions can:

    · provide prospective employers a “complete resume package” of the player’s overall abilities.
    · offer players more control over the submittal process.
    · guarantee delivery of the resume package.
    · shorten the resume submittal process.
    · provide up to the minute application tracking of the resume through the employer review process.

    This service is not a replacement for live auditions but rather, delivers additional benefits to better assess and determine both the player’s overall experience and performance level prior to extending invitations to preliminary audition rounds.

    To provide players with audio excerpts, MyAuditions will work with professional recording studios in selected throughout the US to hold auditions and conduct recording sessions.

    MyAuditions uses high quality professional recording equipment, recording facilities and endeavor to mirror as closely as possible the “live audition environment,” similar to that which would typically be held by a professional orchestra.

    MyAuditions will also adhere strictly to the Code of Ethical Practices for National and International Auditions as set forth by the American Federation of Musicians (AFM), the International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians (ICSOM), and the Major Orchestra Managers Conference (MOMC).

    During the recording sessions, each player is allotted up to 30 minutes to record a maximum of ten (10) individual recording tracks permitting the player one “false start.” Each audio excerpt is individually recorded in its entirety without edits or modifications to the recordings, then uploaded to the players MyAuditions account and locked, thereby “certifying” the audio excerpt recording.

    Players will be able to manage and associate individual audio excerpts with searchable resumes and/or resume submittals to posted job opportunities. A “Play” icon to the right of the player’s name denotes resumes with audio excerpts associated. Recordings are accessible through audio links displayed on the players resume. Selecting an audio link launches the Microsoft Windows Media Player.

    At MyAuditions, we focus on providing players a more efficient way of reaching audition committees, guarantee delivery of resumes and audio excerpts, and offer up to the minute resume status reports throughout the review process.

    MyAuditions, Inc. 4840 SW 11 Ct. Plantation, FL 33317

    © Copyright 2003-2005. MyAuditions and are trademarks of MyAuditions, Inc.
  6. JoeH

    JoeH Well-Known Member

    Jun 22, 2004
    Philadelphia, PA/ Greenville, DE
    Home Page:
    Looks interesting, indeed!

    A few suggestions:

    1. You may want to have the onsite engineers provide the performers with a CDr of their session as soon as they're done, so they can take it with them, consider their best work at a less-stressful time afterwards, and get back to your designate with a decision.

    2. For an additional fee, performers could request edits. (Although I realize the goal here may be REAL, unedited "Live" performances. Hardly anyone believes most audtion tapes/CDs are strictly unedited, unless there's a video to accompany it, of course.)

    3. Pick fairly large cities/locales to get the best "bang for the buck" in terms of work vs. travel. The more performers in one area the less engineers you'll have to hire, less paperwork, payments, contact, etc. You may get a better deal from the engineers as well (although fair warning: frankly I don't see this as all that profitable for most engineers due to the cookie-cutter nature of the project). If you're trying to keep the costs down for the performers, pay the engineers, and make a bit off the top for yourselves, it's going to get tricky. You WILL get what you pay for.

    4. Find good halls in the above-mentioned areas. To keep costs at a minimum, it's ideal to get a good space and simply set up a good set of microphones for the performers, capturing their sound IN these spaces, with a minimum (or none at all) Post-production. It's also a good way to keep it fair and even for all participants. (This one doesn't get more reverb than THAT one, or this one sings into a different mic than someone else, etc. etc.)

    5. List the perrformance spaces with the tracks so that your listener can make a fair assessment of the sound of the performer as well as the musical performance. If you can't get a good hall out in Dubuque Iowa vs. Lang Memorial Hall in Swarthmore PA, for example, and assuming the post production is limited (no extra reverb, amdience, etc.), it might be fair to let the listener know that up front.

    6. Establish a tech/spec sheet for the recording. (within limits, of course). Perhaps something as basic as a pair of omni microphones for the overall performance sound, a stereo cardioid pair on the piano (if used) and a couple of high-quality (engineer-selected) cardioid microphones for the soloist(s). For most recital recordings you could get away with as few as three mics (easily mixed on the fly to stereo, onsite), or as many as five or six mics (mixed afterwards to stereo back at the engineers post-produciton studio.)

    It's pretty standard stuff these days, but most onsite/location classical engineers use DAW (digital audio workstations) now, from a variety of software vendors, on a PC or MAC. You probably can't dictate what platform your engineers should use, but you should specify what format the resulting WAV files should be (most would agree that 24/44 would more than suffice for a "Demo" CD, and at least 128kps data rate for compressed MP3 files.)

    You'll also want to clearly define, in writing, who owns what (Usually the artist own/controls the performance and you (Or the engineering co) own the raw materials/masters until there's a buyout. It's often different from one situtaion to another, but I'm sure you'll work that out. If you're culling materials from engineers all over the country to store on your own servers (or hard copy safeties/backups) you'll again want to have the engineers adhere to the same standard: MP3/Windows Media for online, Red Book CDr for physical/playable copies, and wave files (raw and mixed, clearly titled - name and date, etc.) on CD-ROM (or DVD-ROM). Request TWO copies (at least) and suggest the engineers keep everything on file for their own safe keeping as well. This way, you have a copy, your clients have a copy (online and physical), and your engineers have a copy.

    You may find this is a great way to keep contacts going all over the country, and build up a collection of great, reliable engineers.

    I'm sure there's more to consider, but that's what comes to mind immediatlely.

    Good luck with it all, and keep us posted on your efforts!
  7. MyAuditions

    MyAuditions Guest

    MyAuditions Audition Tour


    Thanks for taking the time to clearly outline what we are considering with the audition tour.

    A couple of points that need clarifying.

    1. We want to screen and secure professional recording engineers to either do the recording in their own studio or set it up at a local hall or university. So, the entire process would be the responsibility of the engineers, and MyAuditions personnel may or may not be on site to supervise. I guess the way we see it, is if we can send 15-20 musicians to the engineer, then it is up to the engineer to determine best location and insure that the appropriate equipment is being used.

    We have relationships with many schools and could coordinate to have the engineer record on site, if the engineer would think it would be advantageous to do so. The benefit would be that we would promote the engineer as a designated and certified audio engineer of MyAuditions to musicians, students, schools and orchestras. We currently have over 1,700 schools, orchestras and ensembles as registered members and 5,500+ registered job seekers. We also have a mailing list of an additional 6,000 subscribers. So, I believe we have much to offer to the engineers.

    2. Each engineer would be required to follow strict guidelines set forth by MyAuditions, which we basically follow the guidelines set forth by the unions for taped auditions. Those guidelines include the following:

    · The authenticity of the audio excerpt.
    · The identity of the player associated with the audio excerpt is an identical match.
    · The audio excerpt has not be edited, altered or modified in any way.
    · The audio excerpt is an original and not a duplicate or unauthorized copy.
    · The use of high quality professional recording equipment and/or recording facilities was used in the production of the audio excerpt.
    · No other persons, corporations or business entities have copyright claims, ownership, or otherwise, associated with the audio excerpt.
    · The audio excerpt is solely owned and copyrighted exclusively by MyAuditions under the guidelines set forth by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. ¤ 512.

    Musicians are NOT to receive a copy of their recordings and the recordings become the sole property of MyAuditions. This insures no duplicates are made nor other individuals obtaining the recordings can misprepresent them.

    The recording engineer sends the files in Windows Media format to MyAuditions and we upload them to the account. We may develop a process by which the engineers can upload directly to the job seekers account as well. The job seekers cannot upload themselves. This prevents them from uploading non-certified files.

    The engineer would be required to maintain a backup copy for a minimum of one year just in case.

    Job seekers will be required to sign an agreement stipulating how the audition is run and the engineers will sign a contract with MyAuditions to insure the procedures are strictly adhered to. Obviously, we want to have the process to simulate as closely as possible a live audition.

    As for the fees, we would want each engineer in each location to provide this to us. We, in turn, will provide it to our job seekers. It is up to the job seeker to decide which facility to use. But, we are flexible on this and we want to make sure that a job seeker is simply not picking one over the other because of the lowest rate. but the ones that best fit their needs. For example, in the same location, one engineer is set up and works best for strings recordings while another is more appropriate for brass. We are open to any suggestions.

    MyAuditions will make it's money by storing and maintaining the files as well as make them available to the job seeker and to his/her prospective employers. Recording fees made by the engineers are theirs to keep.

    We would need to put in process a way to screen recording engineers to insure the highest quality work, professionalism, knowledge and experience. Any ideas on this would be helpful.

    Additional comments greatly appreciated!

    Jack Reynolds, Manager/Community Programs
    Performing Arts Career Resources
  8. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    My thoughts are for there to be a flat fee per player, payable in advance to cut down on no-shows. $100-150 per person should be fair considering time spent tweaking the setup for each musician and then having to upload the files to your FTP server. This would make it worthwhile for the engineer. Many of us here have an orchestral background but do this fulltime.

    Next, 30 minutes per person may not be enough time to allow the player time to get comfortable while adjustments to mic placement are made, then allow one false start, then the player needs water, time, etc etc. I predict that there will be folks that blow both takes-- must they allow those excerpts to be posted?

    We all have a variety of mics but I would bet that most everyone here who is really serious owns a pair of DPA 4003 or 4006 omnis. These are common first-class mics and are recognized for their accuracy. Make them the "standard" for everything, with a spacing that will work for almost everything-- say 19 inches or so. Also a standard height (say 8 feet) would give everyone the same perspective. Distance from player to micstand would need to be left to the discretion of the engineer to compensate for acoustics and the individual player's sound.

    Another choice could be Schoeps, but with the various capsules it could be difficult ro require one particualr omni capsule-- MK2S or MK2H or MK2?

    Finally, forbid anyone from using a studio! Even an "OK" church will allow them to sound better than any but perhaps 6 studios in the US. THat way the players will sound and feel their best about their playing. which almost never happens in a studio.

    Finally, if more than one of us wants the same city, how is it decided who takes care of the auditionees?

  9. Plush

    Plush Guest

    A few observations for the people here and at

    30 minutes is not enough time for a decent recording---
    there is sound testing time
    run through time
    recording time--enough to run through the piece several times
    1 hour is recommended

    No editing??--oh really?

    Your contestants would be at a great disadvantege compared
    to the others submitting tapes. Editing is common practice
    even when it is "prohibited." That's the facts!

    Engineer WILL NOT maintain your archive will maintain the archive.

    Requirements should be for a "good recording." There shall be no
    silliness as to specifying which type of microphone shall be used at
    which distance etc. Please just hire a good pool of engineers and
    trust their ears and judgment.

    There shall be a minimum fee for the engineer to show up.
    This should be equal to the cost of 3 people auditioning.

    Thank you for listening. . .

    Best from Chicago,
  10. MyAuditions

    MyAuditions Guest

    RESPONSE: Yes. this is the preferred method. Although the pricing structure has not yet been decided, we would take a non-refundable deposit and the balance would be paid to the engineer.

    RESPONSE: We want to simulate an actual audition one would experience with an orchestra and they do provide a finite time for each candidate. So, the more time the engineer allows, the less time they have for other musicians to record that day. I would assume that if the engineer is highly experienced, setup should only take a few minutes. We allow one falst start and that is all (just like at a live audition). Those that blow the audition have two options. 1. Musician files uploaded are at the discretion of the musician. It is up to him/her to decide which ones to submit with their resume so the ones they are not happy with, they don't have to submit. 2. They can re-schedule another recording session only if the engineer has available slots at the end of the current schedule. If the engineer uploads the first set of recordings and then the musician decides they want another set, then the musician will have to pay MyAuditions for the additional storage. Rescheduling fees are for the engineer to keep.

    RESPONSE: It will be up to the engineer to decide the location. Any outside locations will need to be arranged by the engineer and any costs associated must be covered by the engineer. But, if MyAuditions is sending 50 applicants to the engineer and the recording fee is, as an example, $100, the engineer will still make a healthy profit.

    RESPONSE: As stated earlier, we would like to avoid providing exclusivity for each city. For example, if we have 300 applicants scheduled for NYC, there would be quite a backlog. It is our intention to set a flat fee for each city with several engineers and let the musician decide, based on their location and the speciality (e.g. strings, brass, etc) of each engineer. Fees may be slightly different depending on the city but not for the same city as we don't want to have engineers constantly changing their pricing in the same city and therefore, be the driving factor in a musician deciding on where to record.


    Jack Reynolds, Director of Community Programs
    MyAuditions - Performing Arts Career Resources
  11. MyAuditions

    MyAuditions Guest

    It is up to the engineer but that means more time to record, less time for candidates to audition that same day. So, instead of 14-16 recording sessions per day, it is limited to 6-8. There is absolutely no run through on pieces allowed. Again, the recording session is to simulate a live audition.

    RESPONSE: Absolutely no editing is to occur and each engineer, in our contract, insures that this will not take place. We most likely will send a proxy to the recording location to oversee this process and insure no editing takes place. This is a priority specification from orchestras we are in discussion with who are interested in using the service. The audition does not necessarily have to be flawless because audition committees look for more for intonation, interpretation, phrasing, sound, ect. A common occurrence. In addition, we certify the audition process so orchestras will be more inclined to evaluate these audio auditions rather then those sent in where they know, to be a fact, that they were edited. The advantage is to the musician to go through our engineers.
    RESPONSE: We have not yet thought this through.
    RESPONSE: From our initial survey of our members, we estimate that each engineer would have a minimum of 25 recording sessions but depending on the recording location, that may be higher or lower. Depending on costs and the profit margin, we will need to determine what the minimum sessions will be to satisfy the engineer and make sure it is worth it for them to participate.
  12. 0VU

    0VU Active Member

    Mar 2, 2005

    I don't think that any of this is particularly applicable to me as I'm in the UK but I'm curious...

    You say that editing is not to take place. Fair enough, this is a stipulation on many audition recordings. However, as Plush has stated, it's a stipulation that's often, even usually, ignored. If editing is done well, it is virtually impossible for the listener/orchestra to tell whether a recording is a single live pass or has been edited. There are technical processes which can reveal even good edits on a digital recording but these are fairly time consuming, require some expertise, are not 100% reliable, and are not really practical to run on large numbers of recordings. Does this mean that an adjudicator has to assume that any recording not submitted through your system has been altered? That's not a very fair way to work.

    Given that the orchestras are very unlikely themselves to have the tools and expertise, or be prepared to pay for, analysis of audition tapes, how do the orchestras with whom you're in discussion propose to ensure a level playing field in their audition tapes? Do they propose to make you guys the sole supplier of recorded auditions?

    If not, then I don't believe that your clients will be competing on a level playing field and the process of using your services could be to their disadvantage. The orchestra can't practically ensure that all submitted recordings are unedited and the result of a single first run through. Your clients will be disadvantaged, both by your no-edit policy and from your policy of no-run through which makes a proper balance check impossible (or at least difficult). Your clients' recordings will be competing alongside tapes made independently which will have been more thoroughly technically "prepared" in both the recording and editing.

    Ignoring the questions of intonation, etc., which can (and on some recordings will) be fixed by editing, if the adjudicators are evaluating the artiste's sound/tone quality (which they should be!) those who have received proper balance checks and chosen a sensible venue and a specialist, or at least experienced and competent, engineer, will have a distinct advantage. If the choice of engineer (and hence venue) is left up to the artiste, ime, many will pick the wrong setup for their purpose simply because it's convenient/local/in a room they like even though it's utterly unsuitable for them. Even where they have got the right venue and engineer, I'd say that not permitting them a proper balance check is going to work against them getting the best result.

    Ime, it's very unusual for a single, fixed mic setup to get the best out of every musician. Sure, it'll give an idea of their sound, from a comparative point of view, but the comparison will only really be valid against other musicians recorded by the same setup in the same venue. Recordings from even a standardised mic setup in a different room will sound totally different to the extent that a comparison is very hard. They run the risk of getting a less favourable result than a fellow competitor who, by luck or knowledge, choses a setup more suited to portraying them in a favourable light, or an independently made recording which has been tweaked and fine balanced to get the sound exactly the way the artiste wants it. I think you need at least to allow for some "balancing time".

    Obviously, these recordings are only a first stage in the audition process and preparation of a shortlist for face to face auditions but when some people will be employing every trick in the book to make themselves look good, how does limiting the options of your clients work in their favour? Unless you manage to sign an exclusive deal with orchestras, in which case, how will you, in a cost effective way, cover international auditions and ensure their adherance to your standards?

    I'm not saying that I disagree with your aims in the procedures you wish to impliment, just that in the real world it's not practical to enforce this in anything but an exclusive supplier situation. Even then, you would need total trust in your engineers/staff as it would be very hard to prove whether or not your procedures have been followed.

    I record every couple of years the regional heats of a national competition. These recordings are actually the main source upon which the competition finalists are selected. There are live judges at each regional final, who decide the winner of that round, then the regional winner's recordings are compiled onto CDs which are then taken to a couple of days of listening sessions with the final adjudication panel who then select the shortlist for the live grand final. As part of this process, I have to go along to provide technical comments/advice on the different balances of each recording. The venues range from very dead sounding theatres through to relatively live halls and comparisons are difficult. The performers are mic'ed specifically to produce a "generic" sound which reduces as far as possible the effects of the venue but the different acoustics still affect both the way the music is performed and it's recorded sound. The judges can take account of performance differences but they still want me there to talk about tonal differences between performers, which could result from the mic'ing or acoustics. Your clients won't have the option of a report from a single engineer who has heard every setup.

    Any kind of recording is going to be a compromise in all sorts of ways, the more rules an limitations you apply to them, the more un-natural and potentially unrepresentative they become.
  13. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    If I am not mistaken, some of the goals of this project are to provide uniform, flattering sonic representations of the players by having them play in good acoustics, recorded by folks who know what the instruments should sound like.

    You say that the engineers can record in whatever space they like, and cannot allow any runthroughs. These 2 factors are certainly up to you to establish, but in so doing you are possibly preventing the player from being represented in the manner I described.

    Let me repeat-- the studios in the US that are large enough to enable a player capable of producing "orchestral size" sound to be well-recorded and also LIKE what they are hearing as they play are so few (and expensive) that no engineer connected with this project will be using them. This could easily end up working against the player, just as the infamous St Louis audition of several years ago where each prelim candidate was handed a battery-powered cassette recorder and led to a dressing room to record their prelim round on their own. Lovely!

    And to prevent a runthrough means that the engineer is flying blind-- no chance to even get a level (which will certainly change from a double bass to a trombone to percussion) and no opportunity to find the ideal position for the mics, thus shortchanging the player as the engineer needs to adjust not simply for the instrument but also the player and the acoustics.

    Observing a protocol as you described will mean that a sonic lottery will occur-- IF your engineer happened to guess right without hearing anything then the player will be happy with the results.

    In the several auditions I took I was never denied the opportunity to play a little in the room to get a feel of the acoustics. If you want to replicate a real audition scenario and fairly represent the players and in a manner that will eliminate as much as possible the variables of acoustics (dry studio vs resonant room), placement (misjudging whether the mics were too close or too far), and timbre of the recording (mic choice).

    It seem to me that the goal should be to arrange guidelines (rules?) that make it possible for the same player to go to several of these and sound pretty much the same at all of them. It is certainly your game and your rules, but it is to everyone's benefit for the players to be MORE happy with the whole affair rather than as frustrated as if they spent the time and money to go to an actual audition. Everyone should feel like this was a positive experience.

    Finally, do you have a time frame in mind for this?

  14. Plush

    Plush Guest would NOT be providing a "valuable service" to its
    clients under the proposed guidelings.

    Instead, would be providing a rushed, aggravating and slipshod experience for the player. This "experience" goes against
    everything an experienced and thoughtful producer/engineer would bring to the normal audition tape recording.

    We try to put our clients at ease and help them to forget the microphones. We try to point out that we are there to FLATTER the player and keep only the best of what it done that day.

    In short,, under the proposed strict scenario, provides the worst situation for the player.

    Please understand that although I feel the idea to be good in concept, we would be unwilling to participate under the current structure.

    Instead, we would continue to work independently where we always have had success in helping the propspective candidate to
    be admitted to the live audition.
  15. MyAuditions

    MyAuditions Guest

    We are endeavoring to have the recording engineers represent the musicians in the best possible way. From the feedback we have received from many, many orchestras was that an edited tape does not provide a realistic assessment of how that musician would perform in a live audition. You can take a mediocre player and make him/her sound outstanding with edits. Edited recordings are not a fair representation of the musician. In reality, what occurs at the live audition is the exact opposite as that in the recording session. The musician performs poorly. His/her time and expense is wasted and the audition committee has used up the time with what they thought to be a stellar player, only to find that not to be the case.

    We look for each engineer to advise the musician as the recording session exactly what would be in their best interest in terms of setup and equipment.

    Again, this is at the engineer's discretion in terms of setup and mic placement. Engineers would do a soundcheck as needed and ask the musician to play in order to do so. But, a run-through is something we prefer the candidate not do. Do you think that at the live audition, the audition committee would allow a run-through of all the excerpts so the musician can become better acquainted with the accoutics? It will never happen. So, again, we are striving to simulate a live audition. The only difference is that it would be recorded.

    Again, sound test could be performed at the engineer's discretion.

    We absolutely agree which is why we are soliciting feedback from this forum to help us determine what exactly those guidelines should be. We want this to be a happy experience for the musician. As I am sure you are aware, traveling to an audition can be an expensive affair and we want musicians to set realistically goals and help them decide which auditions to attend based upon the feedback from their "Audio Excerpts."

    The development on MyAuditions has been completed and debugged. We have many orchestra's and schools of music who wish to participate in it and we are now working on determing the best way to hold the auditions. Whether to hire our own recording engineer to travel out to each location with us or use independent engineers to adhere to the process by which we put in place. As soon as we can establish guidelines and determine which process to use, we can then discuss a timeline for implementation.

    Jack Reynolds, Director of Community Programs
    MyAuditions - Performing Arts Career Resources
  16. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    The fulltime engineers and producers on this list are too busy with major projects/ steady clients to be able to commit to a schedule like that. Simply adopt guidelines that most professionals can live with.

    And I'll say it again in a different way-- no orchestra would have an audition in a studio because of the poor acoustics. No artificial reverb takes the place of even a half-decent room (and I have some of the best reverb-in-a-box available). You shouldn't either.

  17. MyAuditions

    MyAuditions Guest

    Obviously, you have not fully reviewed our documentation, nor have you accessed the development. You are misinformed as to the entire process. We have been discussing this service for well over a year. We have polled orchestras, schools, and musicians, of which we have over 600 pre-registered. We do not take lightly your inference that we are going to rush things simply to get it out there. We must have certain and absolute guarantees as to the process, the rules and guidelines, build consensus from all our constituents and then take next step in the implementation of the process.

    Hmm, I don't recall ever stating that the proposed guidelines were permanent. The proposed guidelines are exactly that, "proposed guidelines" which, with our limited knowledge of live recording is the reason we are discussing the service on this forum. Until we have satisfied the engineers requirements, their exacting standards and procedures, then and only then, can we create some "permanent guidelines."

    For those engineers wishing to participate in establishing the rules and guidelines, would work directly with MyAuditions. The published rules and guidelines would have the engineer as a contributor. This information would then be provided to the orchestras, schools and musicians so all parties involved would know exactly how the guidelines were established. Most advantageous is that those engineers involved as contributors would more than likely be a preferred choice by most of the musicians wishing to participate.

    Jack Reynolds, Director of Community Programs
    MyAuditions - Performing Arts Career Resources
  18. Zilla

    Zilla Active Member

    Mar 29, 2005
    WY / CA
    Home Page:
    I would have to agree with the other replies: The conditions under which you propose to produce recordings would be a disservice to the musicians.

    The reason is that recordings made under those conditions will not be competitive enough. Just as the quality of a private piano lesson crushes what can be had in a classroom environment, so will an individualized recording session totally outclass your proposed assembly line situation.

    While I respect your intention of having an ethical and level playing field, this condition would only (possibly) hold true within your own site. If your job seekers have to compete with recordings made outside your control, they will be at an unfortunate disadvantage.
  19. FifthCircle

    FifthCircle Well-Known Member

    Feb 12, 2001
    Los Angeles, CA
    Home Page:
    Assuming that you can make all of this even out with the production values... I have another question of audition recording...

    I have recorded numerous tapes for various clients over the years and a number of the orchestras that require tapes have rather differing requirements for how they want them made. It is how they have attempted to level the playing field (so to speak), but also presents a number of sonic issues. In the case of many of these (New York and Boston immediately come to mind), the orchestra specifies what microphone to use and how to position it for a given instrument. In those cases, they specifically want a MONO recording so that all issues involving room are evened out.

    This brings up another very tricky point- Are we as engineers presenting what *we* think the instrument should sound like or what the *performer* believes their instrument should sound like. And if it is from the former viewpoint, how do we keep a sonic similarity so that performance is judged rather than recording. For example, Zilla has one point of view, I have another, Plush yet another. They may all be equally good, but they will be different.

    Recording is a collaborative process between engineer and client. They come out best when both sides can agree on a sound. The description of this process as it has been described is not collaborative and this concerns me from a standpoint of recording and performing reputation. It is the engineer's responsibility to make the performer comfortable and the performer's job to make sure we as engineers know what is expected.

    I think this is a great idea in general, but the potential pitfalls are enough to make it so that they would be useless for all involved.

  20. MyAuditions

    MyAuditions Guest

    Musicians would not be at a disadvantage with recordings made elsewhere because:
    1. MyAuditions, the engineer and the proctor certify each recording.
    2. The recordings have not be altered after recording.
    3. Certifying insures the guidelines are followed.
    4. The recording is not a duplicate.
    5. The recording is not misrepresented.
    6. The recording is guaranteed to be delivered to the audition committee.

    That puts participating musicians at a decisive advantage. Those that submit tapes made outside? You never know what you get. What if you make a recording of a musician and the musician gives it to another musician to critique. That musician then makes a copy and submits it as his/her own to an audition. What if the musician records it in his/her bedroom? What if the musician sends it via mail and it does not arrive by the deadline? The calls to confirm receipt would be required. What if the audition committee misplaces the recording? And on and on. That's a lot of what if's.

    The six points above have been created specifically by musicians, orchestra personnel managers and their executive directors. This is what they want.

    The only challenge from this discussion is determining the best process by which to record, the guidelines and rules.

    As a recording engineer, you strive for perfection in the recordings but because you do, does not mean that the performers on the recording have to be flawless which might be intrerpreted as a relection on the quality of the engineer's recording. Again, audition committees look for sound quality, tempo, interpretation, and style. There are countless live auditions where a candidate has made a mistake, cracked a note but won the job because the committee determined that this person was the best fit for the section.

    We are open to the pros on this thread to help us determine what the most optimal conditions would be other than having recordings edited which would not be allowed by our customers.

    Jack Reynolds, Director of Community Programs
    MyAuditions - Performing Arts Career Resources

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