Your Dose of Nerdy Aria Goodness

Well, this isn’t a very sexy-looking post, but if history is any indication, it’ll be a popular one. Drum roll please…

Aria Frequency Lists for the 2017 and 2018 audition tours are now available!

Click through the hyperlinks below, or visit our Audition Resource page for all lists for all voice types for the last 7 years.

2018 Lists: Sopranos  |  Mezzos  |  Tenors  |  Baritones  |  Basses / Bass-baritones

2017 Lists: Sopranos  |  Mezzos  |  Tenors  |  Baritones  |  Basses / Bass-baritones

I don’t have time to muse too much on this year’s findings, as auditions start this weekend in LA, and mama is decidedly not ready. So you’ll have to surf them yourself. But…

I will say that I am struck by the increasing variety of repertoire that walks into the audition room. An exciting and healthy sign for our art form, I’d say. I compared the total number of arias listed this year across all voice types with the total from 5 years ago, and my anecdotal hunch was confirmed. I controlled for the number of singers (which varies slightly from year to year) and found that the number of arias on lists this fall represents a 35% increase over that from 5 years ago.

An explanation for those of you who have no idea what’s going on here:

Every audition season, we aggregate the 4-aria “packages” of singers who apply for a Filene Young Artist audition, grouping all of the arias for each voice type and then identifying how many times each aria appears. We then sort by frequency, and end up with a snapshot of which arias are being offered that audition season. It’s useful if you’re curious how popular or rare your own rep is, if you’re shopping for some new rep and want ideas, or if you’re a young vocal coach who is prioritizing which arias to learn in which order. (And yes, I would’ve killed for these lists 35 years ago; that’s one of the reasons I do them.)

Anyway, it’s a time-consuming and nerdy endeavor, and sometimes it gets the best of me. I always feel as if horns should blare and confetti rain down when I finally churn out and post these damn things, but that never happens… I’ll just have to take solace in the pageview stats that demonstrate their usefulness.



Consider yourself covered in confetti! Thank you for your diligence in creating this useful tool.


Wonderful list!

Please note: in the 2018 Baritone and Bass list “La calunnia” is listed as being from Don Giovanni–it is from Il barbiere di Siviglia.


Fantastic! Thanks once again. It looks like the exact same list has been posted in the mezzo category for both 2017 and 2018. Could this be updated, please?


As always, MANY MANY Thanks for doing this! As a youngish, relatively inexperienced accompanist/coach (I’ve spent years in music theory programs and have been branching out slowly into collab work) I can’t even tell you how valuable these lists are. If only the same sort of thing existed for the frequency of particular song lit presented at student recitals! :p
(If you feel so inclined–I am also an admin of The Collaborative Pianists’ Community on FB. We’d love for you to stop by and make yourself at home!)

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