Rochester’s Got Talent

RPO - Rochester's Newest Ensemble

Rochester’s Got Talent

It’s no secret, Rochester and the surrounding areas are packed full of skilled and talented individuals just
waiting to share their craft in a myriad of different ways.  Check out the opportunity below!


The Rochester Pops Orchestra will be presenting a concert titled “Rochester’s Got Talent” on Sunday, May 21, 2023 at 7 p.m.  This concert will feature 12 selected musicians (vocalists and/or instrumentalists) from in and around the Rochester area to perform a custom-arranged selection of their choosing with the ensemble.

Try Outs

Auditions will be held on: Monday, November 14 from 7 pm to 9 pm, Tuesday, November 15 from 7 pm to 9 pm, Friday, November 18 from 7 pm to 9 pm and Saturday, November 19 from 10 am to 2 pm.  Anyone wishing to secure a 10-minute slot is required to select one from our online sign-up HERE.

What’s Required for an Audition

Auditionees are asked to bring a prepared solo that will be presented to our panel of judges.  This can be unaccompanied or you are encouraged to bring sheet music to have our appointed accompanist play.  Backing tracks are NOT permitted.  Each vocalist is asked to arrive 10 minutes before their selected audition to fill out some paperwork, and then will have time to sing/play their selection before the judges.  12 finalists will be selected to participate in the concert.  


There will be 2 regular Sunday rehearsals (3 pm to 5 pm) leading up to the concert, as well as 2 Dress rehearsals along with the concert date that are all required of each applicant to participate.  Ample rehearsal time is important to make this concert a success and it is imperative that all musicians are comfortable with their music.  EACH musician will be asked to select 10 pieces to sing with the RPO.  Arranging and Performance licenses will be applied for each selection and the approved selections will be considered for the concert.  The chosen selection will be custom-arranged by our maestro, Brock A. Besse to best suit the orchestra and vocal range of each participant.  

Commonly Asked Questions

Below you will find commonly asked questions about Auditions and our Concert.

What kind of music is appropriate for my audition?
It is not necessary that your audition piece be your selection to sing or play with the orchestra, however they should be
similar in style.  You want to present the judges with a selection that best demonstrates your skill as an instrumentalist
or vocalist.  A song that shows your range, your technique, your abilities and your mastering of your voice or instrument.

In regards to selections … the Rochester Pops Orchestra focuses on ALL types of music covering genres from jazz, golden oldies,
country, pop, hip-hop, soundtracks, musicals, soft rock, easy listening and many others.  The one area we try to stay away from is
classical music due to other ensembles making this their priority, and the RPO pushes to offer something different that is NOT being
shared in the Rochester area.  If you choose to audition with a classical piece, odds are you will be asked to select some pieces that 
are of a different genre if selected as one of the finalists.  Any selections with explicit language will not be allowed at either auditions
or during the concert.  

Is there an age limit to participate?
We are asking that all auditionees be at least 15 years of age.

After I complete my audition, what happens next?
We are hoping to have a great turnout of talented individuals filling the audition slots.  If for some reason they fill up and there is a need
for more slots, dates will be added after the Saturday, November 19 audition date.  After our final audition is complete, all judges will tally
their scores for each individual, and the top 12 auditionees will be sent an email with further instructions.  Those that are not in the top 12
will be sent an email thanking them for their time and participation, a code for 2 free tickets to the concert will be offered to each participant,
and their name will be included in the program as a contestant.  With the overwhelming amount of talent in our area, it is going to be extremely
difficult to select only 12 people.

What dates are the finalists required to participate in?
First and foremost is our concert date of Sunday, May 21, 2023 at 7 p.m. in the Bethel Lutheran Church Sanctuary (6 p.m. call time for ALL musicians)
There will be 2 Sundays that we ask 6 of the 12 participants to attend to get a taste for singing with the orchestra before the Dress Rehearsals,
 – Either Sunday, April 23, 2023 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. OR Sunday, May 7, 2023 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Our dress rehearsals are slated for Sunday, May 14, 2023 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Bethel Hall and then Friday, May 19 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Sanctuary.

Is the Music Director available for one-on-one rehearsals with each finalist if needed?
Yes, most certainly.  Our goal is to make sure each finalists is comfortable, confident and solid in their music.  Anything we can do to help is
made available to each finalist.

What is the dress code for the concert?
We cross between business casual to formal with the orchestra ALL in black.  We would of course like each finalist to stand out and not be hidden
by also wearing all black, but we ask that no one wear jeans, white socks, t-shirts or apparel with holes in them.  

What if I need to change my audition time slot? OR What if I am running late?
It’s very important to be respectful of each other’s time.  With 10 minute time slots, we will not have excess time to make changes or add someone
until the end of each audition period.  If you would like to trade, change or find a new time-slot, please simply email the orchestra personnel by clicking
below on “Contact Us.”  We will work to make sure to find a time slot that best suits you.

If there is a possibility that you MAY be running late or not make it at all, please send a text to (507) 318-0801 so that we are aware.  Everyone’s time is
so important to us and in order to make sure everyone is treated fairly, we would ask that you select the BEST time when selection an audition slot.