And now that I have a minute, I present my own personal experiences with college auditions thus far.
So I've done 3 auditions to date: Syracuse, Ithaca, and Emerson.
Syracuse: I underestimated the level of competition at Syracuse a lot and it was also my very first audition, so it was very intimidating for me. That being said, the students who go there now were so nice and the faculty did a good job of making you feel fairly at ease. The dance audition was hard. The steps weren't that hard, but it went really, really fast. And I'm a pretty weak dancer so, of course, when they broke us in to pairs after we learned the combo as a group, I was in the first pair and I was paired with a girl who had been dancing like her whole life, but whatever. For anyone who's considering musical theater in college who still has a year or more till audition time, I would highly suggest you take some dance classes, because I started dancing again this year and it was comforting for me just to know what the dance words ment and to have had practice doing many of the steps. After the dance we did a group vocal warmup and then were called, one at a time, in to a room to do our songs and monologue.
Ithaca: Ithaca had no dance audition (yay!) so that automaticly put me a little more at ease. However, they still lead everyone in a vocal/physical warm-up before auditions, which I thought was really good. Their faculty was really nice and I felt like they put you even more at ease than Syracuse did, and I had been impressed with how good Syracuse had been at that. After the warm-up everyone waited in the auditorium while current students had a question/answer session and they called people out to do their songs in one room and their monologues in another. There were a lot of kids I had met at the Syracuse audition the day before who were also at Ithaca and one of my best friends was there too, and it made me feel better knowing people. Bad thing was they told us if our monologues went a teeny bit over a minute they would not cut you off, and they cut both me and my friend off when ours ran a little over. So anyone going to Ithaca, they are strict about their time limits!
Emerson: Emerson was probably the best audition experience I had, mostly because, as good as the other two schools were at making you feel comfortable, Emerson had virtually no level of intimidation. The dance audition was super easy, and it was to Hairspray, so it was fun. Then you waited to be called to sing and then again to do your monologue. They asked you to prepare two songs but you might just sing one and they asked me to sing my second. The general concensis was that one room was not really asking to hear the second song and one was, so I don't know if that was just the experience of the kids I talked to or everyone, but that's what we thought. The thing I really like about Emerson was they actually tried to get to know you as a person durring the audition process. Like the acting teacher asked me to do my monologue again, but to this time do this and that (and in the end he said I did everything he asked, which was good for me) and then he had you sit down and talk about yourself and things like that. The other schools asked you if you had any questions, but that was about it. Not that it makes them better or anything, I just liked that.
So that was my experience so far. I have 6 or 7 auditions to go still and I'll share the rest of my experiences as they happen. I have Hartt and Carnegie Mellon at the end of the month and NYU, Cincinnatti, and the Boston Conservatory in early February.