music students



Application &  Audition Process

Prospective students must complete a live audition and interview with the music faculty prior to the semester of initial enrollment. If you live too far from an audition site for a live audition to be practical, a videotape may be submitted for provisional consideration, to be followed up by a live audition and interview when you arrive on campus. Recorded accompaniments are not allowed for auditions except in certain circumstances for popular music auditions; an accompanist will be provided if requested.

Application materials should be received and auditions completed at least six weeks before the beginning of your first term in the music major in order to ensure a place in applied music, ensembles and required music courses. Priority music scholarship consideration is given to student applications that are complete (audition and application finished) prior to March 20. No audition or interview is required for the music minor unless scholarship is requested.

In addition to PBA application procedures, prospective students seeking to major in music must file an application with the College of Arts. Approval for study in the Bachelor of Music program or the Bachelor of Arts program is based on several factors, including an audition, interview and review of previous work.



Music Audition 2022-23 Dates:

Fall 2022 Audition Dates

  • Friday, November 18, 2022 @ 3 p.m.

Spring 2023 Audition Dates

  • Saturday, February 18, 2023 @ 9 a.m. 
  • Friday, March 3, 2023 – Arts Day 
  • Friday, March 31, 2023 @ 7 p.m. EST (Virtual Audition) 
  • Saturday, April 29, 2023 @ 9 a.m. 

Audition Requirements

Auditions in this area are less stringent than those in performance. Students should prepare two contrasting pieces from the classical literature, demonstrating their technical and interpretive abilities in a principal area. Instrumentalists and keyboardists will be asked to play scales as well as sight-read.

It is understood that applicants will come with a variety of experiences, including areas of prior work (songwriting, arranging, performing, engineering), genre and stylistic interests (pop, rock, jazz), and hopes of outcomes. All applicants are expected to demonstrate certain musical skills. Applicants will perform two selections of contrasting style that represent the genre of music that the applicant hopes to study. Instrumentalists will play major and minor scales and sight-read. Applicants with experience in areas such as songwriting, arranging, performance, and recording may wish to present items or a portfolio to the audition panel. Items of interest may include a performance history, a demo CD, song lyrics, and original scores. Students will participate in an interview and complete a music theory assessment.

Students interested in the highly specialized areas of performance or composition must have had considerable prior private study and developed other musical competencies in order to pursue these areas. Such students must prepare an audition according to the following guidelines:


Voice: Two contrasting pieces from the standard repertoire are to be performed from memory: one in English and one in Italian, French, or German.

Keyboard: The following are to be performed from memory:

  • All scales and arpeggios (major and minor);
  • a Prelude and/or Fugue from The Well-Tempered Clavier, or two movements from a French Suite or English Suite by J. S. Bach;
  • a movement from a sonata by Mozart, Beethoven, or Haydn; and
  • a representative composition from the 19th or 20th century repertoire.

Strings: Violin, Viola, Cello: All major and minor scales in three octaves; prepare an etude representing current level of technical development; one movement from J. S. Bach unaccompanied sonatas, partitas or suites; one movement from a standard concerto; two orchestral excerpts.

Bass: All major and minor scales in two octaves; prepare an etude representing current level of technical development; two solo pieces in contrasting style with piano accompaniment; two orchestral excerpts.

Harp: Any major, harmonic minor, and melodic minor scale four octaves in 16th notes; an etude from Grossi or Pozzoli; classical era sonata movement or concerto movement; twentieth-century piece; two orchestral excerpts.

Woodwinds and Brass: All major and minor scales; two solo pieces in contrasting style; an etude representing current level of technical ability; two orchestral excerpts.

Percussion: Snare Drum: Etude of choice from Portraits in Rhythm by Anthony Cirone; demonstration of rolls, open and closed.

Keyboard: Suggest performance of J. S. Bach Violin Concerto in A minor (Allegro moderato) as found in Modern School for Xylophone, Marimba, and Vibraphone by Morris Goldenberg; all scales, two octaves. Timpani: Etude of choice from Modern Method for Tympani, by Saul Goodman; demonstration of tuning skills. Accessories: Demonstration of basic techniques on cymbals, bass drum, triangle, and tambourine.

Guitar: All major scales, two octaves, any Carcassi etude, or equivalent solo piece by Guilanni, Sor, Tarrega, or other major composer for classical guitar.

Composition: Perform two contrasting works on an instrument or voice from classical literature. Submit scores of two original works. Interview with the composition faculty.

Placement Examinations

All freshmen and transfer students will be evaluated for piano study, music theory and musicianship skills placement.

Tests in other areas of music may be required in order to place the student in the appropriate course level. Transfer credit for courses in music theory will be evaluated by the Department of Music upon completion of the entrance examinations.

Auditioning students may supply their own accompanist, or may request that the College of Arts provide one. Taped accompaniment tracks, or any other form of prerecorded accompaniment are only allowed when auditioning for the Popular Music program.

At the discretion of the audition committee, all prospective students may be asked to sight-read. A separate audition may be required for certain ensembles.



Call the College of Arts at (561) 803-2400