I'm auditioning for a play and the requirement is to prepare 24 measures of a song and perform it vocally. I'm going to be performing Tomorrow from the musical, Annie. How do I count out 24 measures?

  • 2
    You need to explain this much more carefully: at a first reading it seems that counting is irrelevant, in that if you perform the 24 measures of the song, then you finish after the last measure - no counting needed. Please give much more information if you hope for answers.
    – Old John
    Nov 30, 2015 at 22:14

3 Answers 3


1) Find a recording of the song or have someone perform it so that you can listen to it (repeatedly if necessary)

2) listen to the song, identify the beat.

3) then identify the time signature -- rhythmically the music comes in chunks, most commonly of 4 beats, sometimes 3 or 2, and less common other counts, with an accent especially on the first beat of each chunk. Tomorrow is in 4. Each of these groups of 4 beats is one measure of the song; listen to the song, counting out 1-2-3-4, 1-2-3-4...

4) Count out 24 measures worth of singing -- this is what you should rehearse.

Some comments:

  • it doesn't necessarily have to be the first 24 measures.
  • In this case, as with many songs, each phrase of the lyrics spans 4 measures, so counting out 4 measures at a time (1-2-3-4, 2-2-3-4, 3-2-3-4, 4-2-3-4), and then counting these groups of 4 on your fingers, or by making a mark on paper, is a good way to go.
  • This song is tricky in that there is an extra measure slipped in in the transition between the first verse and the first chorus, I wouldn't worry about that and just not count it.
  • The first two words are "pick up notes" -- the first "will" falls on the first beat of the measure.

If you select the beginning, this works out to the first verse and chorus of the song.

  • 2
    Consider doing the -last- 24 bars rather than the first - that way you get to impress them with your sustained high note/big finish. Dec 1, 2015 at 12:59

Is it possible to find sheet music with lyrics? Then it becomes easy.

Every vertical line represents the end of a measure. You count 24 vertical lines and voila: you have 24 measures of your song. Using the lyrics you can orient yourself.


24 measures amounts to a verse and a chorus. Think of it that way.

I was SO TEMPTED to say..."you can't count a measure? why are you auditioning for something where you have to count a measure?

  • Could be. But not necessarily...
    – Tim H
    Dec 2, 2015 at 8:25
  • 1
    On the other hand: it is probably what the auditioners have in mind...
    – Tim H
    Dec 2, 2015 at 8:33

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