NMT COUNTDOWN: Top 10 Songs With Great Audition Cuts

It’s back to school season and The Green Room is looking out for you. All this month, the NMT Countdown series is bringing you a guide to the best-selling songs on NMT from the last year. Are you planning a cabaret and looking for the perfect stand-alone song? Are you a soprano looking for audition material that shows off your classical skills? The NMT Countdowns will guide you to some of the best songs NMT has to offer. PLUS: for today only, get 20% off the songs on this list with the code NMTCOUNTDOWN. Happy singing!

NewMusicalTheatre.com is a gold mine of an online song library, especially if you are in need of a repertoire makeover or new contemporary material for cabarets or showcases. With college musical theatre programs back in session (Welcome Class of 2019!) and a new audition season ready to pick up in NY, it’s the perfect time to use the fall inspiration of harvesting and gather a few new crops (aka songs) for your book.

Though I can surf YouTube watching new composers’ concerts for hours, I’ve always had a difficult time slice-and-dicing their music for auditioning purposes. The majority of my favorites are extensive songs with complicated stories that make no sense out of context or condensed. Also, the arrangements can be non-melodic and intricate, difficult to sight-read quickly for accompanists playing auditions. This poses a challenge for the classic 16-bar cut.

But what I love about contemporary MT songs is the intimacy and specific storytelling, evoking “singing for the camera” instead of playing to the balcony of a large theatre. Contemporary MT songs also sound like sung conversations half of the time and often reveal vulnerable shades. This section of our books can ofter a gentler touch and new color that stands apart from the rest of our music.

So to help my book and yours, here are 10 of NMT’s bestsellers that have vocal dynamics, cutting capabilities, and stories that glow and grow – all in all, as close to perfect audition cuts as you can get. Happy Fall and enjoy the performances!

1. “Broadway, Here I Come” – Joe Iconis

A “smash” on NBC’s SMASH, this song puts you quite literally on the edge.

Watch this video on YouTube.

2. “I Won’t Mind” – Jeff Blumenkrantz, Annie Kessler, and Libby Saines

A woman singing to her godchild, trying to conceal the pain of not having a child of her own.

Watch this video on YouTube.

3. “Favorite Places” – Adam Gwon

Soft and moving, and extremely stripped down at the end.

Watch this video on YouTube.

4. “Dear Daddy” – Bobby Cronin

Two Words: Vocal Cries. Melts my heart.

Watch this video on YouTube.

5. “Rock City” – Brad Alexander and Adam Mathias

A wanderer finds his destination…and soars to some vocal heights on the way.

Watch this video on YouTube.

6. “Pretty Funny” – Pasek and Paul

The contemporary version of “The Party’s Over” from Bells are Ringing and the heartbreaking first song written for the musical Dogfight.

Watch this video on YouTube.

7. “Disaster” – Drew Gasparini

Coming to terms with the emotions you feel at the end of a relationship.

Watch this video on YouTube.

8. “Joey is a Punk Rocker” – Joe Iconis

First crush perfection and a kick ass journey!

Watch this video on YouTube.

9. “Seeing You There” – Adam Gwon

The musical bridge is brilliant and leads to one heck of a vocally impressive revelation.

Watch this video on YouTube.

10. “Perfect” – Pasek and Paul

An amazing marriage of an emotional conversation with vocal chops.

Watch this video on YouTube.

Click here to stream today’s NMT Countdown playlist. Remember, the code NMTCOUNTDOWN is good for these songs today only, so if you’re on the hunt for an audition song that hits all its marks, shop now or hold your peace! 

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