Ah, the high beltress. Many a pilgrimage has been made to hear her. And many a song has been written for her. If you fall into this voice part, you’ve pretty much hit contemporary musical theatre gold. More songs are being written for this voice part (and belt tenor) than any other these days (sorry, sopranos and baritones. You’ll always have CAMELOT.).
I believe it’s important to find a great song, yes, but then really know how to sing it. I’ve heard a lot of high belt/mixers that just kind of… well.. splat. The best that could be said about it was that it was loud.
We know there are great songs available to high belt/mixers that will encourage better singing and storytelling. We have a whole slew of them on our website (Are you a member yet? If not, what are you waiting for?! 180 writers, 550+ songs. What more could you want? Subscribe here). We’re happy to highlight five of them for you this week.
Music & Lyrics by: Stuart McMeans
Performed by: Erica Lustig
Some of the best comedy songs are ones that have a kernel of truth to them. Well, this kernel is ready to pop! “Fearless” has a wonderfully simple melody and lyrics that are laugh-out-loud funny because they’re so original and unexpected. This is a great choice for a lyrical voice with impeccable comic timing. It’s also very audition accompanist friendly!
I love songs that go high for a reason (not just because they can). “Game On” showcases a character on a clear emotional journey with a beginning, middle, and end. It’s a very well-written song and really fun to sing. The score has a strong pop/rock feel that would be perfect for most contemporary musical theatre auditions.
I Love His Face
Music & Lyrics by: Tor & Lisa
Performed by: Lisa Rothauser
I. LOVE. THIS. SONG! It’s clever, well-written and really shows (vocal) range. Think Etta James’ “At Last” with a more sardonic wit. If you have the range (high C), and the sense of humor to really sell a lyric like “my Jewish Superman,” this is the pop/rock contemporary musical theatre song for you!
Music by: Jenny Giering
Lyrics by: Laura Harrington
Performed by: Lizzie Klemperer
While this song is for a high belt/mixer, it requires a great amount of finesse given its interior feeling. The repeated figure in the accompaniment is haunting and there’s a real economy in the lyric and music that draw in the listener. What more could you want in an audition song?
Sigh No More, Ladies
Music by: Will Reynolds
Lyrics by: William Shakespeare
Performed by: Nikki Renee Daniels
Start off with great, iconic words and then put Will Reynolds on the job with Nikki Renee Daniels singing and you’re in incredibly capable hands. There are tons of contemporary Shakespeare adaptations around these days (including Will’s musical THE GREENWOOD TREE). Why not bring something like this in and show them your Elizabethan chops? You can also hear this song on Ms. Daniels’ album, “Home.”
Seriously, we have plenty more where those came from, both for high belt/mix and for every other voice type (including youth and teens!). Come check out our website.
And stay tuned for the next week’s Anthology: Broadway Baritone.
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Visit www.contemporarymusicaltheatre.com for more information on over 180 contemporary musical theatre writers and 550+ songs, all searchable by voice and song type.