Hello, I'm a clarinetist at the Melbourne Conservatorium who has auditioned for AYO National Music Camp the last two years and been unsuccessful both times. Next year I'd really like to get into both AYO NMC and AISOI. What can I start doing now, before I know the what the excerpts for those auditions are, to be the most prepared for when I do get the excerpts and do the audition?
The best way to put yourself in optimum readiness would include the following things; write to the symphony orchestras or find out somehow (through asking around some candidates perhaps) what their audition rep has been for the past 5 years . Spend the time to thoroughly learn how they all go, the tempi, listen to recordings and play them all the time . Once you feel solid then record each excerpt separately, listen back and record again this time trying to better your previous playing or fix something obvious you hadn't noticed while playing - that's a common problem for all of us. These steps take time and energy but will vastly improve your self-awareness. They should also help you to more quickly identify what needs attention the next time a set of audition excerpts comes through and furthermore you will have probably already learnt them! The key is to work on many excerpts as part of your daily practice routine - don't just work on 5 per semester , work on as many as you can starting today. I hope that's helpful!