Report by Darren Abrahams, 6 June 2015


Sarah Playfair

Catherine May

Lila Palmer

Arlene Rolph

Nadine Benjamin

Darren Abrahams

Philip Headlam

Anastasia Witts

Lindy Tennent-Brown

Discussion moved from the differences between the UK and US systems to the wider issues within the industry itself:

- US system more efficient but impersonal

- UK system more personal but can be sloppy

- would be good to adopt elements of both - eg list of arias

- too many singers

- not enough preparation

- not enough time

- divide between singers and panel

- inappropriate college training

- infantilisation of artists

- betrayal

- funding and support of culture

The participants agreed that auditions are flawed but will not change unless attitudes on both sides of the audition desk change. This will probably need to come from the artists first - preparing better, being more professional, having a better idea about the direction of their careers, demanding a greater level of respect. Those who run the industry need to understand the situation most artists find themselves in - there is not enough work or support to manage a career long term.