31 Best Musical Theater Audition Songs For Kids

Musical Theater Audition Songs For Kids

Everyone knows that the song you sing at your audition can make or break you getting the role. There are hundreds of great musical theater audition songs for kids, and choosing one that shows your range is vital. Here are some of the best.

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“If Only You Would Listen” From School of Rock

Song Year: 2015

This track from School of Rock comes from a scene that many kids unfortunately know all too well. It deals with the lack of connection between themselves and their parents, whether it be because of misplaced expectations or life circumstances in general.

Learning a song like this could unwittingly be a vent for frustrations during times when one’s parents seem not to hear what’s being said.

“Quiet” From Matilda

Song Year: 2022

If you have Netflix in your household, there’s a fair chance that your kids have already memorized the words to the songs in Matilda. One of the most expressive songs from the production is Quiet, which maintains a quick pace while asking some important questions about reality.

And yet, because these answers cannot be given, at least a bit of calmness would suffice.

“The Bare Necessities” From The Jungle Book

Song Year: 1967

More often than not, some of the best repertoire pieces are right where you’d never think to look. This iconic track from The Jungle Book is a song that almost every child is at least vaguely familiar with, depending on how much they might have seen the Disney film.

Plus, the song contains an unforgettable message about having faith that things will work out.

"The Bare Necessities" From The Jungle Book

“Tomorrow” From Annie

Song Year: 1977

There are certain songs that every prospective musical theater player should know, and Annie’s song, Tomorrow, is one of those. This song is all about being excited about the possibilities of the coming day, knowing each day is a fresh start. 

Tomorrow is instantly recognizable and short enough to be learned quickly. It’s the delivery of the song that takes the most time to etch out.

“Impossible/It's Possible” From Cinderella

Song Year: 1957

Every child will inevitably grapple with the question of whether their hopes and dreams are realistic. This signature song from Cinderella is a perfect reminder that it’s only because of those wishes that the miraculous actually happens.

Impossible/It’s Possible is a bouncy song with an unforgettable descending melody line following the proclamation that possibilities are possible.

“Everlasting” From Tuck Everlasting

Song Year: 2015

If you could live forever without fear of death so long as you drank from a certain spring, would you? Winnie Foster (one of Tuck Everlasting’s main characters) weighs this very question in her mind as she sings Everlasting, holding a vial filled with vitality-granting water.

“Little People” From Les Misérables

Song Year: 1985

Those familiar with Les Misérables probably know its child character, Gavroche, all too well. While it’s been heavily modified since, the original 1985 production featured a full-length song sung by Gavroche. 

In Little People, he uses comparisons to explain that he should not be misjudged simply because of his small stature. Just because he is a child doesn’t mean he isn’t capable or competent.

“Part of Your World” From The Little Mermaid

Song Year: 1989

Disney’s film, The Little Mermaid, remains one of the most popular children’s movies of all time. Its unforgettable soundtrack is filled with songs that have been considered favorites across generations of families. 

An example of this is the song, Part of Your World, where Ariel explains her desire to be human and to live life outside of the water.

“Naughty” From Matilda

Song Year: 2022

In the song, Naughty, Matilda gets a bit existential as she ponders whether life is dictated by fate or chance. Throughout, she draws comparisons to the more fortunate circumstances of others, claiming that going against the expectations of others can cause beneficial change with regard to one’s own life circumstances. 

“Somewhere Out There” From An American Tail

Song Year: 1986

If the child is quite young and still lacks a defined higher range, Somewhere Out There is a perfect choice. The song’s delivery makes special use of that shaky upper region that kids often possess.

When sung with the proper conviction, this ballad about knowing there’s someone out in the world thinking fondly of you can melt anyone’s heart.

“Happiness” From You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown

Song Year: 1967

Considering how disgruntled Charlie Brown is often portrayed as being, one might be surprised to hear what he sings about in Happiness. Traditionally sung by multiple children, Happiness pays homage to all of life’s little moments that help to define what happiness is and feels like. 

This innocent song can serve as a perfect reminder playing in the background of one’s own mind during those particularly stormy days.

“My Favorite Things” From The Sound of Music

Song Year: 1965

One of the most enduring songs to come from The Sound of Music is My Favorite Things. The song’s melody is not only a historical jazz landmark but has also found itself being considered a Christmas song, thanks to some wintry imagery in a portion of its lyrics.

As its title suggests, My Favorite Things outlines a long list of things that never fail to make oneself happy on a down day.

"My Favorite Things" From The Sound of Music

“Almost There” From The Princess and the Frog

Song Year: 2009

If your child is more familiar with newer Disney films, Almost There is a song that they likely already know to some degree. The song outlines how, if one has lofty goals, one should continue to work toward them if they are to come to fruition. 

Almost There also reminds us that carrying out this effort might look like the complete opposite of what others around you are doing.

“Middle of a Moment” From James and the Giant Peach

Song Year: 2010

Middle of a Moment is an ideal audition song for any child who has a massive upper singing range. The song starts with a snarky delivery before erupting into sweeping passages intended to be sung with a touch of bravado. 

In terms of theme, the song focuses on the times of transitional phases everyone inevitably goes through while passing through their various stations in life.

“A Letter From Charlie Bucket” From Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the Musical

Song Year: 2013

Charlie Bucket expresses his altruistic nature in A Letter From Charlie Bucket, which, of course, is addressed to Willy Wonka. The song reads as a request for Wonka to invent certain things that would make each individual person in Charlie’s family happy. 

Musically, this song is ideal for children because its melody consists of closer note intervals, keeping large jumps to a minimum.

“You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile” From Annie

Song Year: 1977

One of Annie’s most unforgettable scenes is when the group of orphans break out into song and dance after hearing You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile come on the radio. This classic show tune serves as a reminder to leave the house with a smile as you start the day. 

The song’s pauses for dramatic animation provide opportunities for children to display their acting skills.

“The Perfect Nanny” From Mary Poppins

Song Year: 1964

Michael and Jane Banks outline to their parents the sort of qualities they feel should be prioritized in their search for The Perfect Nanny. Throughout their plea, their father is in continual dismay, but in reality, one can’t help but feel they were really asking for the bare minimum.

After all, who wouldn’t want the caretaker of one’s children to be a caring, loving person who invests time and has fun, too?

“If I Only Had a Brain” From The Wizard of Oz

Song Year: 1939

Sung by Scarecrow, If I Only Had A Brain, is remembered for its signature rolling melody as he outlines what he would do if the Wizard did grant him a brain. Ironically enough, throughout the song, he shows evidence of already being capable of doing such things.

“I Just Can't Wait To Be King” From The Lion King

Song Year: 1994

As we approach the 30th anniversary of The Lion King, it’s safe to say that this franchise is still popular among younger audiences. This likely familiar song provides opportunities to act as both the hopeful Simba and the pessimistic Zazu, as Simba proclaims how he is looking forward to succeeding in his father’s royal position.

"I Just Can't Wait To Be King" From The Lion King

“Who Will Buy?” From Oliver!

Song Year: 1963

In the song, Who Will Buy, Oliver Twist is watching the scene of a market from a wealthy home after spending his life as an orphan. Throughout the song, the various vendors are asking who would buy their wares, while Oliver makes note of having a feeling of happiness that perhaps cannot be bought.

“Picture Show” From Bonnie and Clyde

Song Year: 2009

Picture Show is a great choice for a duet or an audition piece that displays one’s ability to act and sing in different roles and styles. The song is sung by a young Bonnie and Clyde as they tell of their dreams, with Bonnie wanting to be an actress, and Clyde wanting to be a gangster.

“Giants in the Sky” From Into the Woods

Song Year: 1986

Giants in the Sky is sung by Jack as he describes his experience of the world of giants that exists after climbing the beanstalk. This track begins with a graceful, nimble delivery before erupting into tension as Jack outlines the feeling of terror as he realizes the giants want to eat him.

“Be Kind To Your Parents” From Fanny

Song Year: 1954

Be Kind To Your Parents is a comical reminder to all children that they should exercise a little patience with their parents. In a way, the song almost depicts parental adults as kids, showing that children are responsible for parenting their parents.

It’s easy for kids to forget that their parents were once children, too. Little do they know that their parents might always feel like children to some degree.

“So Long, Farewell” From The Sound of Music

Song Year: 1965

This song from The Sound of Music is featured during a scene when the Von Trapp children say goodnight to the attendees of a family party. So Long, Farewell makes use of both English and German, which can be an opportunity for kids to display a talent for singing in other languages.

"So Long, Farewell" From The Sound of Music

“Consider Yourself” From Oliver!

Song Year: 1960

Making friends at any age can be difficult, but every once in a while, you might come across someone who makes you feel like part of the group. Consider Yourself is sung to Oliver Twist by Dodger, telling him that he’s a member of the family and that their struggles and windfalls will be shared between those in the group.

“Castle on a Cloud” From Les Misérables

Song Year: 1985

If you’re looking for a shorter song to add to your audition repertoire, Castle on a Cloud is a fantastic option. This song has a catchy melody thanks to its lullaby styling, with only a few verses to memorize.

Castle on a Cloud is the character Cosette’s personal utopic vision of how she wishes her life to be compared to what it is in reality.

“Maybe” From Annie

Song Year: 1977

The song Maybe comes in toward the beginning of Annie, as she sings out longingly while looking out of the orphanage window. Lyrically, Annie fantasizes about what her parents are like and what their interests and hobbies include. 

Maybe has a few moments that showcase a singer’s note accuracy across wide intervals while inflecting for dramatic purposes. After all, singing a song of such emotional depth requires a certain conviction to really hit the audience correctly.

“I Know It’s Today” From Shrek

Song Year: 2008

In the song, I Know It’s Today, Princess Fiona sings from 3 different periods of her life about how familiar she is with fairy tale princess stories. From childhood to adulthood, she knows all too well how each story goes, but never seems to tire of their perfect fairy tale endings.

These stories give her hope that she will soon be rescued by her own knight in shining armor.

“Truly Scrumptious” From Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Song Year: 1968

This song from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang comes as the Potts children are on the beach with Truly Scrumptious (the character). The children say how their spending time with her is just as deliciously delightful as the tastiest treats one could eat. 

Of course, Truly also lets the children know that she feels the same way toward them in return.

“Round-Shouldered Man” From The Secret Garden

Song Year: 1991

Have you ever been visited by someone in your dreams? If so, you can probably relate to The Secret Garden’s song about a Round-Shouldered Man who enters Colin’s dreams on a frequent basis. 

This song is one of the best choices for a young man who has an exceptionally high vocal range, or whose voice hasn’t yet changed with puberty.

“What If” From The Addams Family

Song Year: 2010

It isn’t all too uncommon for siblings to pick on and annoy one another. However, Wednesday’s torturing of her brother Pugsley takes things to a whole different level.

Ironically, it’s this very kind of treatment Pugsley looks upon with fondness as he sings What If, expressing his worries about whether her frequent tormenting will end once Wednesday gets married to her boyfriend.

"What If" From The Addams Family

“My New Philosophy” From You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown

Song Year: 1999

My New Philosophy finds Charlie Brown’s sister, Sally, talking with the piano prodigy, Schroeder, about her various mottos in life. The trouble is, she happens to find meaning in almost any phrase, seeing how they could be adopted into such a creed.

After telling Lucy such a phrase and sending her running with panic, she remarks that everyone interprets and reacts to these meanings in their own way.

“I Know Things Now” From Into the Woods

Song Year: 2014

Little Red Riding Hood and her story play a central theme in Into the Woods. The song, I Know Things Now, tells her tale of how she was lured and tricked by The Wolf.

Despite the horrors of her story, Little Red Riding Hood explains that, now, she is equipped with the wisdom to live without fear.

“In My Own Little Corner” From Cinderella

Song Year: 1957

More often than not, we forget about Cinderella’s harsh daily life before that magical night of the ball and the glass slipper. In the song, In My Own Little Corner, Cinderella explains how, in her small area of the house, she escapes her stark reality by letting her wildest imaginations run free.

“I Have a Dream” From Mamma Mia

Song Year: 2001

I Have a Dream speaks to the power of music, and how one can use music to get through all of life’s difficulties. In a way, the song is a sort of personal reaffirmation of the faith one has that things will work out in spite of the unknown.

“I Won't Grow Up” From Peter Pan

Song Year: 1954

If Peter Pan were to live with a personal philosophy, I Won’t Grow Up could be considered his manifesto. In this cheeky anthem, Peter Pan denounces his participation in all things that would be associated with adulthood.

“Any Dream Will Do” From Joseph And The Technicolor Dreamcoat

Song Year: 1968

In Any Dream Will Do, Joseph tells the tale of receiving his famed coat, how he lost it, and in the process, began losing his hopeful outlook along the way. Fortunately, despite all the anguish that Joseph would endure, he does eventually become reunited with his coat. 

Any Dream Will Do borders between a hymn and a sort of tropical folk song, with its vocal delivery intending to be light and elevated as if one were suspended in a dream.

Top Musical Theater Audition Songs For Kids, Final Thoughts

The majority of these songs were taken from family-friendly shows. For parents, this aspect can be a little reassuring, knowing their kids aren’t being subjected to adult subject matter during repeated viewings of the production. 

Between all of the songs listed here, a solid repertoire can be formed that displays a diverse range of singing and acting delivery. Many of these songs will benefit from a child’s natural tendency to have very animated personalities.

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