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Music Auditions

Because the School of Music considers artistic talent in the review process, students must audition for consideration to the program. Please note that the audition for admission also serves as the audition for talent-based scholarships.

Audition Process

Music auditions for fall 2023 will be held on campus on the following dates:

  • Saturday, January 28, 2023
  • Saturday, February 11, 2023
  • Saturday, February 18, 2023
  • Monday, February 20, 2023

Your School of Music Audition Day will include an audition and an informational lunch. Some students will also participate in additional activities as indicated below: 

  • Composition majors: Interview with faculty
  • Contemporary Music and Digital Instruments students: Informational open house
  • Music Education majors: Informational open house 
  • Music Therapy majors: Interview with faculty

You will receive a personalized agenda with your individual audition time (and interview or open house time, if applicable) at least one week prior to your scheduled audition date. Auditions typically take place between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Eastern. 

If you're unable to attend any of the scheduled audition dates, please email the School of Music at music@ohio.edu to schedule an alternative audition time.

Audition Requirements

To prepare for their live audition, applicants should be prepared to perform any of the following audition requirements. Additionally, applicants should be prepared to demonstrate other skills as instructed during their live audition, which could include sight-reading or simple aural skills exercises as directed by the faculty. The School of Music highly encourages students to choose repertoire from diverse composers for their auditions, including underrepresented composers. For questions about how to prepare for your live audition, please contact the faculty listed below for your instrument or email the School of Music at music@ohio.edu.

Brass

  • Perform at least one solo of major length. Solo movements and/or etudes contrasting in tempo and style are desirable. Advanced solos from state solo and ensemble contest lists are suggested.

Digital instruments

  • Perform approximately 10 minutes of live performed (not pre-recorded) music. Audition material should demonstrate musicality through performance. Students may use any instrument(s) of their choosing — traditional, digital or a combination of both.

Organ

  • Perform a work by JS Bach (can include one of the “Eight Little Preludes and Fugues”)
  • Perform a work from the 19th-21st centuries

Percussion

  • Prepare solos or etudes that demonstrate your experience in the following areas of percussion:
    • Snare drum
    • Mallets 
    • Timpani

Piano

Performance/pedagogy majors - Perform from memory one composition from each of the following categories.

  • Baroque: A prelude and fugue or other major work by J.S. Bach
  • Classical: The first movement of a sonata by Haydn, Mozart, or Beethoven (excluding Mozart Sonata, K. 545, Beethoven Sonatas, Op. 49, Nos. 1 and 2, and Op. 79)
  • Romantic, impressionistic or contemporary

Non-performance majors (music education, music therapy, BA in music, composition) - Perform one composition from two of the following categories. Memorization is optional, but preferred.

  • Baroque
  • Classical: The first movement of a sonata by Haydn, Mozart or Beethoven
  • Contrasting selection from the 19th, 20th or 21st century

Strings

Performance majors (BMus degrees)

Double bass - Perform one composition from each of the following categories. Memorization is optional, but preferred.
  • One movement of a concerto
  • One movement of a sonata (two contrasting movements of a sonata may be prepared in place of a concerto movement)
Cello, Viola, Violin - Perform one composition from each of the following categories. Memorization is optional, but preferred.
  • One movement of a concerto with cadenza (if applicable)
  • One movement of an unaccompanied work by Bach
  • Etude

Non-performance majors (music education, music therapy, BA in music, composition)

Double bass, Cello, Viola, Violin - Perform one composition from each of the following categories. Memorization is optional.
  • Two pieces from contrasting musical styles (choose from Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Impressionistic or Contemporary)

Guitar (contemporary music and digital instruments, music therapy, BA in music)

Prepare two pieces in contrasting styles.
  • Piece 1: Standard bebop of swing tune: Play the melody, comp through the chord changes and improvise or play a transcribed solo for one chorus. Suggested repertoire: Billie's Bounce, Blue Bossa, Summertime, Take the A Train.
  • Piece 2: Fingerstyle or chord-melody piece (usually a ballad). Suggested repertoire: Barry Galbraith Guitar Solos Volume 1 and 2 (published by Mel Bay), fingerstyle arrangement a la Chet Atkins or a short classical piece by Bach or Sor.

Voice

  • Perform one song in English from memory.

  • Perform one song in Italian, German or French from memory. Suggested repertoire for foreign language songs:
    • Italian: selections from 28 Italian Songs and Areas or selections by Donaudy or Handel
    • German: songs by Brahms, Schubert, Clara Schumann or Robert Schumann
    • French: songs by Fauré or Hahn

Accompaniment

Taped/CD accompaniments are not permitted for in-person auditions, and you are encouraged to bring a pianist with whom you have prepared your audition repertoire. If you are unable to bring a pianist, the School of Music can provide a collaborative pianist for a non-refundable fee of $10. You may request accompaniment on the audition registration form.

Choosing Your Vocal Repertoire

Appropriate solo vocal literature can be found in a number of publications and online resources. Popular sheet music books include The First book of Solos series (edited by Joan Frey Boytim), the Standard Vocal Literature series (edited by Richard Walters) and the Twenty-Eight Italian Songs and Arias (edited by Richard Walters). These books are available in a number of school music libraries or for purchase at a local music store or through an online retailer. Additionally, many vocal works are in the public domain and are available for free PDF download at imslp.org.

Woodwinds

  • Prepare at least one solo of major length. Movements and/or etudes contrasting in tempo and style are desirable. Advanced solos from state solo and ensemble contest lists are suggested.

Audition Registration

Choose the audition date that works best for your schedule:

  • Saturday, January 28, 2023
  • Saturday, February 11, 2023
  • Saturday, February 18, 2023
  • Monday, February 20, 2023

To register for a School of Music audition, you must first apply to OHIO and then use your OHIO email address and password to log in to access the registration page. Visit our Application Status web page for instructions to activate your OHIO ID. For questions, please contact Undergraduate Admissions at admissions@ohio.edu or 740.593.4100.

Register Now!

If you're unable to attend any of the scheduled dates, please email the School of Music at music@ohio.edu to schedule an alternative audition time.

Questions?

If you need help with the music audition registration form, your OHIO login credentials or other admissions-related information, please email Undergraduate Admissions at admissions@ohio.edu. For questions about the School of Music audition process or audition requirements, please email the School of Music at music@ohio.edu.

Ohio University operates on a holistic, selective review and looks for evidence of academic preparation when reviewing applications for admission. Additionally, because the School of Music considers artistic talent in the review process, students pursuing certain academic programs must audition and/or submit additional materials for admission and scholarship consideration. Ohio University and the School of Music do not discriminate against any applicants because of race, color, religion, age, national origin, ethnicity, national ancestry, sex, pregnancy, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, military service or veteran status, mental or physical disability, or genetic information.