Two sophomores audition for television talent shows


Alyssa Dohm

Sophomore Alyssa Dohm poses next to the banner after her audition for The Voice on Feb. 16

The lights, the stage, the audience. That’s the goal for the 1000s of people across the nation who show up at the open auditions for popular television talent shows, The Voice and America’s Got Talent. Among these auditioners are sophomores Alyssa Dohm and Sophie Ellis.

“I decided to audition for The Voice because I have always loved singing and have always wanted to try out for a show and this was the first time I was old enough to do it because you have to be 15,” Dohm said.

Dohm auditioned on Feb. 6 at Navy Pier in Chicago. She waited for four hours before getting to sing in front of the judge.

“I was really excited before the audition and I’m really good with keeping my nerves down so I was pretty calm, but my mom was very nervous for me,” Dohm said.

Dohm prepared in the two months leading up to auditions by working with a voice coach who helped her prepare three songs for the audition. Her and her coach picked the song “Young and Beautiful” by Lana Del Rey for Dohm’s main audition song but also prepared two more songs for if she got a call back.

“I chose this song because my voice coach and I went through a bunch of different songs and that was the one we focused on the most and that we thought I sounded the best on,” Dohm said.

Obviously, I’m not expecting to win, but I’m doing it for the fun of it and just the experience.”

— Sophie Ellis

Dohm did not get a call back. However, that is not stopping her. She plans to audition again in February 2017.

“I’m still seeing my voice coach and right now we are focusing on making my high notes stronger and developing better breath support and hitting pitches better,” Dohm said.

Ellis auditioned for America’s Got Talent three weeks ago at a convention center in Chicago.

“My family is a big fan of the show. We watch it together every year and my dad has always joked about auditioning. Then he surprised me by actually signing me up for auditions,” Ellis said.

Ellis performed “Love Yourself” by Justin Bieber and got a call back where she performed five more songs.

“I had prepared three, but I had to come up with some on the fly, which was kind of nerve racking,” Ellis said. “I was definitely nervous when I was singing because it was so quiet and everyone is listening to you and you are thinking in your head ‘don’t mess up, this is your one chance.’”

Since Ellis got a call back at auditions, she was asked to send in a list of 10 songs, from which the producer who evaluated her will pick five. Ellis will then send them to the producers in a video.

“She [the producer who evaluated Ellis at the audition] hasn’t gotten back to me yet. The latest I would hear from her would be February they said. After this, if they like me, I would go to the TV auditions which is like the first round that you see on TV,” Ellis said.

Ellis, who realized her love for singing as a young child, realizes that there is more to this experience than getting to be on the TV show.

“My goals for this is to have fun and to learn,” Ellis said. “Obviously, I’m not expecting to win, but I’m doing it for the fun of it and just the experience.”