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Undergraduate   Posts: 4

Musical audition - common app 1


mikedaman9892 1 / 3  
Aug 14, 2009   #1
The prompt was: Evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk you have taken, or ethical dilemma you have faced and its impact on you.

I realize the goal of an essay is to show the admissions board how you will fit into the school community and make the school more "diverse". I wanted to know not just if there are grammatical errors that need to be changed but also if I spent too long talking about backstory as opposed to how its made me who i am.

Thank you all in advance!

When I visited what is now my current high school in eighth grade, the president of the school stood in the front of the gymnasium filled with worrisome mothers and anxious students. He told everyone that Bishop Hendricken could lead each and every one of us in directions we never before imagined. I always had this in the back of my mind but I never really saw how it could ever apply to me. Up until January of my Junior year I was great in academics, and that is how my peers thought of me. If my friends needed help with math, they'd ask me. If they needed help with chemistry, they'd give me a call. I was just the smart guy.

In early January an announcement came over the intercom that announced that there would be tryouts for Cabaret, which is a just an assortment of one show tune after another in no particular order hosted by a nearby all-girls school each year. I ignored the announcement at first because there had always been opportunities to be in plays and musicals at my school, but it was just taken for granted for granted that the usual "theater" kids would audition and the same three students would seemingly alternate whose turn it was to fill the lead role.

But then there was an additional segment to the announcement. "No experience necessary." I thought about this for a week or so. A major play was in the works at our school so the big names in theater would be too busy to be in a second performance. Furthermore I had always enjoyed singing to myself every now and then even though I didn't consider my singing magnificent by any means. In the end I decided to ignore my stage fright combined with lack of experience and to give it a shot. "What's the worst that could happen?" I thought as images of the judges wincing in pain or bursting out with laughter darted through my mind.

Two weeks later I stood outside the auditioning room. "It's not too late to just walk away," I thought to myself. But it was, in fact, too late because my hand had ignored the idea and proceeded to open the doorway to my judgment. As I handed them a sheet that informed them that, unlike the other people who auditioned, I had no background in singing or theater, my hands began to shake, although I did try to conceal this fact. Without sheet music to accompany me they told me exactly what I had wished I wouldn't hear: "Whenever you're ready!" I was terrified by this point. My hands were clenched into fists to steady the tremors while my body was stiff and unmoving in the middle of the room. Despite all this I began to sing the song that I had sung in the privacy of my room whenever I had the chance or time and had heard time and time again replaying in my mind out of fear of forgetting a word a coming to an abrupt halt. The whole audition seemed strange, yet sublime. Despite my fear, I was enjoying being able to sing openly. My voice delivered each note to the ears of the judges, as a sang the words to the song even though they were not the words I was thinking at the time.I finally made eye contact with one of the judges. She was smiling. And it wasn't a "just smile and be polite regardless of how he sounds smile", but a genuine smile as a result of my singing. Feeling my esteem begin to soar I returned my focus to the song, finished the final note and awaited the decision.

"Alright Michael, practices will be Tuesdays and Thursdays and, if you need one, there are schedules in the hallway. We will be glad to have you in our production!" If I could have done a slow-motion jump of accomplishment like at the end of corny movies I would have. I simply said thank you to the judges and walked out of the audition with an almost obnoxious smile strewn across my face. My friends and family were baffled because they never knew I could sing, not even my little brother who shared a room with me. I didn't so much I got I got into the musical, but more so that I achieved something, regardless of how small it may seem, in something non-academic.

Sure I'm still primarily the smart guy to everyone else, but to myself I'm a completely different person. After that day I've wanted to try things that are intrinsically contrary to my day-to-day routine. Since that audition I've delved into anything and everything. I've researched recipes and I've attempted basic Latin and Arabic. I've even taken a crash course in swing dancing in the aftermath of that day. If I hadn't pushed my boundaries then I don't know where I'd be, but it certainly wouldn't be where I am now. If you ask me a year and a half ago what I wanted to do in college I would have said something along the lines of engineering or science. If you asked me now I'd probably say the same thing except that I would add that I would want room to explore unrelated to topics for the purpose of expanding my horizons and also for the purpose of having the best college experience possible. I realize now that if I give it a chance college, like my high school, will lead me in directions I "never before imagined."

EF_Simone 2 / 2,037  
Aug 14, 2009   #2
worrisome mothers

Unless the mothers were alarming in some way, the word you want is "worried." Don't use "fancy" words unless you are sure of their meaning.
Liebe 1 / 585 2  
Aug 15, 2009   #3
When I got to this point:
'"What's the worst that could happen?" I thought as images of the judges wincing in pain or bursting out with laughter darted through my mind.'

^I already knew where the essay was heading.
Basically, in the earlier and later portions of your essay, I already had a sense of what you were going to discuss. Therefore, you can remove sentences that endorse that you are good in academics and that you were nervous about theater. The point was made the first time, and a further expansion on it is unnecessary.

An example

I had no background in singing or theater

^You already told us this before.

Your essay is also in need of some tweaking in terms of grammar.
OP mikedaman9892 1 / 3  
Aug 15, 2009   #4
Thanks everyone! This obviously is very helpful to me.

also where it says "Bishop Hendricken" in the first paragraph I should have written "High School" after it. I didn't even think about that until I saw the comment above. And I figured the grammar was off because that's never been my strong suit so thank you guys a lot for pointing out some errors I passed over!


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