Welcome to the final blog post in my ’80s and ’90s pop/rock audition song series! In today’s diverse musical theatre landscape, every performer with professional aspirations should have at least two pop/rock radio songs in their audition book. These songs should be contrasting and preferably from different styles and decades (i.e. 70s disco, 80s pop, 90s rock, etc.). Radio songs from the 1980s make especially good audition choices because MANY contemporary musicals feature music styles from that decade. Some examples include: Rock of Ages, Kinky Boots, Heathers, The Wedding Singer, Footloose: The Musical, Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark, Tarzan, and more.
In certain cases, casting directors for these type of shows will specifically ask that performers bring in audition cuts of ’80s pop/rock radio songs. Therefore, it’s always good to be prepared! Below, I’ve compiled several great, iconic ’80s pop and rock songs originally performed by women (though, men should feel free to put their own spin on these in auditions as well). When you finish listening, check out these 80s male audition song options.
P.S. If you need assistance choosing appropriate repertoire for yourself or for your students, please check out my new repertoire consulting business, The Repertoire Guru.
1. “LIKE A PRAYER” – MADONNA (1989)
2. “I WANNA DANCE WITH SOMEBODY” – WHITNEY HOUSTON (1987)
3. “TIME AFTER TIME” – CYNDI LAUPER (1983)
4. “SEVEN WONDERS” – FLEETWOOD MAC (1987)
5. “KIDS IN AMERICA” – KIM WILDE (1981)
6. “BAD REPUTATION” – JOAN JETT (1980)
7. “WHAT’S LOVE GOT TO DO WITH IT?” – TINA TURNER (1984)
8. “LOVE IS A BATTLEFIELD” – PAT BENATAR (1983)
9.“BETTE DAVIS EYES” – KIM CARNES (1981)
10.“IT MUST HAVE BEEN LOVE” – ROXETTE (1987)