Audition Information

Auditions will be held Tuesday and Wednesday of first week, and callbacks (the second round of auditions) will be held later that same week. Signup information will go up as auditions approach!

Your audition will last about five to ten minutes – we'll go over some exercises to get a sense of your voice, ear, and comfort level with music, hear your solo, and give you a chance to ask us any questions you have!

Please prepare a solo (about one minute long) and arrive at least ten minutes before your audition time to fill out an audition form!


If you'd like to get more of a sense of what we're like, we recommend checking out our albums on Spotify/iTunes, our social media, and our YouTube!

Audition FAQ

How should I pick my solo?

  • We want to see you at your best, and that means we want you to be comfortable. Pick what showcases your talent, whatever that means for you. We've had members audition with all sorts of genres, but if you're not sure, check out our repertoire for genre inspirations!


How selective are auditions?

  • We get many auditionees every year, but we usually end up calling back only around 20 people. After callbacks, we then select our members from that small pool of about 20 people – in years past, we have ended up accepting anywhere between 1 and 8 members. It depends on what we're specifically looking for each year!


What are you all looking for?

  • We care about a lot more than just singing ability - on the technical side, we're looking at tuning, pitch control, vocal agility, blend, and so on. We would also love to see your personality and your enthusiasm for singing and performing!


What does the time commitment for the Ransom Notes look like?

  • Each week, we hold three full-group rehearsals, each lasting two hours, as well as at least one sectional rehearsal, which lasts one hour. During busier times, such as ICCA season, we often hold extra rehearsals and make existing rehearsals longer.


What if I’m not 100% sure I want to do a cappella?

  • We definitely encourage you to try out anyway! What's great about a cappella here is that it's always totally up to you whether to commit to anything, and you can change your mind at anytime before getting into a group. An audition is not a contract.


Can I have other extracurricular commitments?

  • For sure! We love how involved our members are in a diverse range of activities - we have many members involved in Greek life, Bluechips, University Theater, TAing and tutoring, club sports, honors societies, and lab internships!


What if I’m called back for multiple groups?

  • AcaCouncil (the board behind all eight groups on campus) plans callbacks to work around this issue. If you have multiple callbacks in the same evening – which is super common – you'll be shared back and forth over the course of the evening in a pre-planned schedule that all groups have agreed upon. No need to worry!

UChicago Ransom Notes

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