Widely acknowledged as one of the finest choruses in the nation, the Choral Arts Chorus comprises over 160 professional caliber volunteer singers. Ranging from homemakers to judges and high school students to retirees, chorus members represent a variety of backgrounds and interests. United in their love of music, our singers often experience remarkable camaraderie both socially and artistically.
Auditioning for Choral Arts
You may submit your online audition at any time during the year through Slideroom. Based on this audition, the Artistic Director may invite you for a live callback audition. Live callbacks are scheduled in July and August and as-needed throughout the season. Please contact the Chorus Manager at any time during the year with audition questions.
Please read the following information carefully before submitting an audition. You may download a copy of these details here.
There are no dues for singing members of Choral Arts.
Full Members are asked to commit to most, if not all, of the rehearsals and performances designated for the full chorus on the performance schedule.
The Choral Arts Chamber Singers are recruited annually from the full membership and perform in their own series of concerts and special events across the course of the Choral Arts season. Other concerts or events requiring a reduced ensemble of singers can arise during the course of the season, and Full Members are recruited through open solicitation or by individual invitation. Participation in reduced ensemble performances is not a requirement of full membership.
Guest Choristers are qualified singers who may wish to sing with the Chorus in one or more performances during the course of the season, but who are not available and able to commit to the requirements of full membership.
The Artistic Director may invite a guest chorister to sing in a given rehearsal/performance cycle if the need arises. Guest Choristers may request to sing in a given rehearsal/performance cycle if he or she so desires; inclusion is at the discretion of the Artistic Director. There is no guarantee that a guest chorister will have an opportunity to sing with the Chorus during the course of the season.
The Audition Process
Online pre-screening audition
Submit your online audition according to the instructions listed below. You will be notified about your audition results by phone or email.
If selected based on your online audition, you will be contacted to schedule a live callback and for your preference for Full Member or Guest Singer. You will be notified about your audition results by phone or email.
Following the live callbacks, qualified singers for whom there are openings will be invited to join the Chorus for the current season. Qualified singers for whom there are no openings will be asked to join the Guest Chorister roster for the current season. Guest Choristers may be invited to become full members if vacancies occur during the season, to substitute for a given rehearsal/performance cycle, to augment the Chorus if required, or to join the Chorus for optional performance opportunities.
All chorus members will be asked to re-audition every one to three years. Re-auditions take place in person.
Click here to submit your audition online through Slideroom.
Please prepare the following items. Each item should be recorded as a separate track and labeled accordingly. (eg: 1. Solo, 2. Vocalization, 3. Hindemith)
An a cappella solo of your choice. If you are accustomed to solo singing, prepare something you know well that shows off your voice. If not, choose something with which you are comfortable (a hymn, folk song, or your voice part from a choral work).
Sing arpeggios or another vocalization of your choice on “ah,” beginning in the middle of your range. Repeat the exercise, each time a half step higher, until you have reached the upper limit of your useful range. Please announce at the beginning of the recording the note you start on.
Sing measure 52 through the first note of measure 60 of the alto line of mvmt. 3 of Hindemith’s Apparebit repentina dies. Tenors and basses may sing in their own octave. Click here to download a printed score.
Note: You may start the application and return to update or complete it at any time by clicking “Save and Exit” in the upper right corner of any page. You do not need to finish in one session. To return to an active application, click the link in step 1 and login.
Sign up with your email and create a password, per the instructions provided.
After activating your account, login to Slideroom.
Click “Begin Application.”
Create your Slideroom profile. This process is very quick and the information collected here will auto-populate your Chorister Application.
Fill out Chorister Application. Your name, address, email, and phone number were previously saved by creating your profile in step 5.
On the Portfolio page, click “Add Media” to upload your audition tracks. Pay close attention to the size restrictions and media guidelines. You will need to upload exactly three items or you won’t be able to progress past this page.
After uploading all of your media, click the green “NEXT” button in the upper right corner of the page.
Enter your payment information and click “Next Step.” (You will be able to review your payment information in the next step before submitting your application.) There is a $5 fee instituted by Slideroom. Choral Arts does not make any profit from this fee.
Review your payment and billing information. You may also review your entire application for accuracy at this point and you may print a copy for your records.
Click “Submit Application.”
Congratulations! You’ve submitted your audition! You will receive a confirmation email.
Important notes about recording your audition segments:
There is no need to make a professional recording, using your smartphone or tablet’s voice recording capability is a great way to record your audition.
The accepted audio file types are .mp3, .wma, .ogg, and .flac.
The maximum file size is 30mb.
You may need to trim your audio, convert the files to one of the formats listed above, or compress the file to a smaller file size. You can do this online for free at one of the following sites:
Audacity is a free audio editing program that will allow you to do all of these things offline. You can download it at audacityteam.org.
During callbacks you will be asked to demonstrate some or all of the following:
Sing scales and other vocalizations, and possibly a familiar song in several different key signatures.
Pitch Perception/Tonal Memory
Match a series of tones played on the piano and sing tones at intervals above or below a given tone.
Clap or speak printed rhythmic patterns.
Perform a short passage of music presented to you at the audition.
Sing a prepared piece in a quartet with three existing choir members. Music will be provided in advance.
You will be provided a schedule of the full season’s rehearsal and performances and asked to agree to your availability. If you aren’t available for the full season, you can request to audition as a Guest Singer rather than Full Member.
Live callback location
Live callbacks are most often held at St. Alban’s Episcopal Church on the grounds of the National Cathedral.
Address: 3001 Wisconsin Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20016. Google Maps Directions:
The church is located at the corner of Wisconsin & Massachusetts Avenues, NW. The entrance to the church driveway (Lychgate Road) is on the East side of Wisconsin Avenue, between Washington National Cathedral and Massachusetts Avenue.
Ground-level parking is available on the street (DC parking restrictions apply) and on the campus of St. Alban’s Church and Washington National Cathedral (after 3:30pm Monday – Friday, and all day Saturday & Sunday).
Underground parking is available in the Cathedral’s parking garage (for detailed information on rates and hours of operation please visit cathedral.org).