Musical-Specific Audition Songs

The Best Audition Songs for Once – by Character

Do you have an upcoming audition for Once? Well unless you have specifically been asked to sing a song from the show that you’re auditioning for, it’s generally best not to. That said, you should still show off similar vocals and personality. So here’s our list of audition songs for Once, broken down by character.

Since Once is a contemporary musical, the following songs are from shows between the 1990s-2010s. In addition, there are lots of folk vibes below in order to match the style of the show.

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Step 1: Read your audition details

Please read your audition details carefully, as they sometimes specify the type of song they’d like to hear (a ballad, something uptempo, etc.). Make sure to select a song that’s appropriate for your specific casting call.

Step 2: Get to know the show

In casting calls, they often ask for you to be “familiar with the show”. And even if it’s not requested, it’s generally assumed. One way to do this is to read through the synopsis while listening to the Once cast album➝.

Step 3: Pick an audition song

Next, based on your personality and vocal type, decide whether you’d like to audition for the ensemble or a specific character. Just keep in mind that if you audition for a specific character, you still might not be chosen for that particular role.

There’s usually a spot on the audition form asking if you are open to being in the ensemble or accepting a different role. I would suggest ticking that box and taking whatever you are offered. Every role is important, and you will earn valuable experience in a show.

And on that same note, even if you audition for the ensemble (rather than a specific character), there’s always a chance of being cast in a leading or supporting role!

To summarize, keep an open mind and try not to take the process too seriously. And when you’re ready, decide which character you’d like to audition for. And finally, choose a suitable song from the list below!


Come Down Now” – Passing Strange

Flowers” – Hadestown

If The World Should End” – Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark

Whispering” – Spring Awakening


Love Like That” – Passing Strange

One Song Glory” – Rent

Passing Tracy” – Fugitive Songs

Your Eyes” – Rent

Ensemble (Altos)

Keys” – Passing Strange

She Used to Be Mine” – Waitress

Winter Blooms” – Alice by Heart

Ensemble (Baritones)

Second Nature” – Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson

Seeing You” – Groundhog Day

Why” – Tick, Tick … Boom!

Ensemble (Basses)

Night Will Come” – Groundhog Day

Welcome to the World” – A Man of No Importance

Wicked Little Town” – Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Ensemble (Contras)

Playing Nancy” – Groundhog Day

Turn Off the Dark” – Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark

Without You” – Rent

Psst… Here’s where you can find out your vocal type!

Ensemble (Mezzos/Sopranos)

Another Round” – Bright Star

Everything Changes” – Waitress

Remember Me” – Little Fish

Ensemble (Tenors)

How Glory Goes” – Floyd Collins

See Her Smile” – Tick, Tick … Boom!

Work the Wound” – Passing Strange

Step 4: Select a monologue

If requested, here are a few audition monologues for Once:

• “Hear That Song?➝” from Ohio  (Cat)

• “It’s Never One Thing➝” from Shows for Days  (Irene)

• “Johnny Talks Kids➝” from Frankie and Johnny…  (Johnny)

• “Mother Moon➝” from Fading Joy➝  (Joy)

• “Rooms” in Fantasy Monologues for Young Actors➝

Final Step: Prepare for your audition

After collecting your materials and getting familiar with the show, it’s time to move forward with the actual preparation. If you’re in need of some guidance on this step, you can always go through this FREE audition prep checklist!

Want more songs? Check out these DIY Rep Books for EVERY vocal type!

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Once Song List

Here’s a list of the musical numbers in Once, along with which characters sing in each of them. Unless you have been asked to, do not choose from the below songs for your audition! The following is more intended to be used for character research purposes.

* That said, if you’ve specifically been asked to sing a song from the show, you can find the sheet music for the best possible audition songs below.

Act 1:

Leave” – Guy

“Falling Slowly” – Guy, Girl, Ensemble

“The Moon” – Girl, Guy

Ej Padá, Padá Rosička” – Baruška, Ensemble

If You Want Me” – Girl, Ensemble

Broken Hearted Hoover Fixer Sucker Guy” – Guy

Say It to Me Now” – Guy

“Abandoned in Bandon” – Bank Manager

Gold” – Guy, Ensemble

Act 2:

Sleeping” – Guy

“When Your Mind’s Made Up” – Guy, Girl, Ensemble

The Hill” – Girl

“Gold (Reprise)” – Ensemble

“Falling Slowly (Reprise)” – Guy, Girl, Ensemble

Which of these audition songs for Once did you choose?

And what role are you auditioning for? We would love to hear all about it in the comments! And in the meantime, you can check out our database of best audition songs for other musicals.

Need extra help? Just go through this free audition prep checklist!

Sign up for your free audition prep checklist.

Stacy Karyn, Author of Audition Songs for Once.
Author: Stacy Karyn

Stacy Karyn is the founder of Theatre Trip, author of The Thespian’s Bucket List, and creator of The Cast Album List. She holds a BA in theatre, a TESOL drama certificate, and has worked and interned with Broadway and Off-Broadway theaters.


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