Another thing to consider when flying is the number of carry-ons you are going to try to bring.  Most airlines are now restricting the number of items that can be carried on to two.  If you have a stick case, tambourine, cymbal bag, luggage, and a snare drum it is not hard to do the math and see something is going to need to be checked.  A tambourine can usually get by without being counted as a carry-on, especially if it can be attached somehow to one of your other carry-ons.  Cymbals can also cause a problem in the overhead compartment.  Calling ahead to try and reserve a spot in the first-class closet can sometimes be successful.  
One last word on airport security.  Remember that as a percussionist, you will carry items security guards might not be familiar with.  Be patient and calm so as not to make yourself look suspicious.  You will have a much better chance of getting to your destination with all of your equipment if you remain calm and cooperative.  Do not take any equipment that is not needed for the audition.  Every item you have that a security screener is not familiar with has potential to be confiscated. Recently when I was on my way to an audition I was stopped at airport security and questioned about several “strange” items that were found in my bag.  Ultimately my explanation was not good enough and I had a timpani drum key confiscated.  A pair of snare drum sticks were almost taken away also.  It took a little convincing that I would indeed need my drumsticks to take my drum audition.  I was able to keep them, along with the warning that I needed to check them next time.
Percussion equipment, unlike a flute, can tend to be very heavy and cumbersome.  If you have ever had to carry a snare drum, cymbals, triangle, tambourine, and stick bag or case, you know that even walking just a couple of blocks with all that equipment can very tiring on your arms.  This is not an ideal condition an hour or so before an audition.  The first difficulty with all this equipment is how to carry this stuff all at once.  A percussionist, unless uniquely talented, has only two hands.  Having a cart of some kind can be very helpful, although this can add another piece of luggage contributing to problems already mentioned.  An alternate solution is to have a sturdy rolling stick case with a retractable handle.  A case of this kind should be big enough to allow a snare drum in its case to sit on top of it, and the retractable handle long enough to clear the drum case when it is stacked on top of the stick case.  A bungee chord can then be used to secure the drum case to the retractable handle. 
Although this system makes getting around with a large amount of equipment easier, it still can be tiring on the arms.  It is best to keep your load as light as possible.  Do not bring stuff that is not needed for the audition.  Keeping materials to the bare minimum will help to stay organized for the audition as well as help conserve chops.  It also eliminates the chance of losing expensive equipment.  If it is possible, driving to the location is the best way to go.  This can get expensive with cabs, but will save you the trouble of going up and down the stairs of subways with equipment in toe.  The door-to-door service of a cab is also very convenient when dealing with inclement weather.
Taking an audition can be a very taxing undertaking.  With all the time and effort that goes into the preparation of an audition list, be sure to give yourself every advantage possible to ensure a great performance.  Auditions are competitive, but it is important to realize the differences between auditions and sporting events.  There is no defense in music.  Trying to psyche out the competition is usually self-defeating.  A candidate cannot help what the other candidates do in their audition.  Focusing on playing the list the way you have prepared it is the most important thing.  Avoid other competitors before your audition and remember, above all else, to enjoy the opportunity to perform.


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