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UMBC Department of Music
Audition Requirements
All students interested in majoring in music must arrange for a departmental audition.

All auditions last 10-15 minutes and are conducted privately with a small group of music faculty. Audition results will be mailed as soon as possible following the audition.

Contact Connie Bailey in the Music Department office (baileyc@umbc.edu or
410-455-2942) to arrange for a departmental audition. Students interested in early acceptance to UMBC should audition in November.

Students interested in auditioning for the Linehan Artist Scholars program, or other talent-based scholarships are required to audition in November or February.

Audition requirements are as follows:
Voice:
  • Two memorized classical art songs or arias in contrasting styles. We recommend that one piece be in English and one be in a foreign language to be considered for a scholarship.
  • The faculty will be listening for clarity of tone and diction, flexibility in the voice, and interpretive/dramatic elements as they apply to your selections.
  • Please send copies of your scores to our pianist via Connie Bailey in the Music Department Office the week before your audition date.
  • Sightreading will be included in the audition
Piano:
  • 2 memorized pieces in contrasting styles (examples include, but are not limited to, a Bach Two or Three-part Invention or Prelude and Fugue, a first movement of a Classical period Sonata, a Chopin Nocturne or equivalent Romantic or 20th Century work).
  • All major and minor scales and arpeggios, 2 octaves.
  • Sight reading will be included in the audition
Strings:

Violin

  • Two pieces/movements in contrasting styles (i.e. two contrasting movements from a concerto; a movement of a concerto and a movement of Bach’s unaccompanied works; a show piece and a slow work; a movement of a concerto and a movement of a sonata; two contrasting movements from a sonata)
  • An etude
  • Three octave scales and arpeggios (up to three sharps and three flats, slurred or staccato). Scales: 4, 8, 12, or 24 notes per bow. Arpeggios: 3 or 9 notes per bow.
  • Sightreading will be included in the audition.
  • For scholarship consideration: at least one movement from a concerto by such composers as Bruch, Wieniawski, Saint-Saens, Sibelius, Tchaikovsky, and a movement of an unaccompanied Bach sonata or partita.

Viola

  • Two movements in contrasting styles. An example is a movement of a concerto by Stamitz or Hoffmeister, and a piece such as the Bloch Suite Hebrique or Hindemith Trauermusik. One should be played from memory.
  • An etude, such as one by Kreutzer, Mazas, Campagnoli, etc.
  • Sight reading will be included in the audition
  • For scholarship consideration, both movements should be memorized.

Cello

  • Two pieces/movements in contrasting styles (i.e. two contrasting movements from a concerto; a movement of a concerto and a movement of Bach’s unaccompanied works; a show piece and a slow work; a movement of a concerto and a movement of a sonata; two contrasting movements from a sonata)
  • An etude
  • Three octave scales and arpeggios (up to three sharps and three flats, slurred or staccato). Scales: 4, 8, or 12 notes per bow. Arpeggios: 3, 6 or 9 notes per bow.
  • Sightreading will be included in the audition.
  • For scholarship consideration: at least one movement from a concerto and a movement of an unaccompanied Bach sonata.

Double Bass

  • Two contrasting movements of a concerto or sonata OR one movement of a concerto or sonata and a contrasting work.
  • An etude - Simandl, Bille, Sturm or Storch-Hrabe
  • One orchestral excerpt of applicant's choice
  • Two scales: one major and one melodic minor; applicant's choice; 3 octaves
  • sight reading will be included in the audition

Classical Guitar

  • Two pieces/movements in contrasting styles: Renaissance Lute work or a movement of Bach from either a solo cello suite, lute suite, or violin sonata/partita; and a piece or movement from either the 18th century repertoire (Sor, Guilliani, etc.), 19th century repertoire (Tarrega, Mertz, etc.) or the 20th century repretoire (Brouwer, Villa-lobos, Rodrigo, etc.)
  • scales in all 12 keys, major and minor, 1-2 octaves
  • sight reading will be included in the audition

Harp

  • Two contrasting solo works or movements from standard solo repertory representing different historical periods and demonstrating an understanding of different musical styles. For performance emphasis, both works should be memorized.
  • sight reading will be included in the audition

Winds

Clarinet

  • Two contrasting solo works. Examples of appropriate repertoire include: C. M. Weber: Concertino for clarinet op. 26, Concerto no. 1 in f-minor, Mozart: Clarinet Concerto K. 622, Finzi: Five Bagtelles, Osborne: Rhapsody; Stravinsky: Three Pieces
  • An etude. Examples of appropriate selections would be from the Rose 32 or 40 etudes.
  • All major scales in two octaves, three octaves where appropriate (ex. F, G, E, F#, Gb) demonstrating technical agility.
  • Sight reading will be included in the audition

Flute

  • Two pieces from the solo literature (two movements of the same sonata is preferable, but not required): One piece demonstrating slow, lyrical playing and one piece demonstrating technical agility. Appropriate repertoire can include: Mozart or other substantial concerto; Bach sonatas; repertoire from the "Flute Music by French Composers" collection. Scholarship applicants must have a movement of a concerto
  • A third piece which can be either a movement from a concerto or an etude.
  • All major scales in two octaves, three octaves where appropriate
  • Sight reading will be included in the audition

Oboe

  • Two contrasting movements of a major oboe concerto
  • Two contrasting etudes
  • Major scales up to three sharps and three flats
  • Sight reading will be included in the audition

Bassoon

  • Two contrasting works or movements from works that demonstrate your ability technically and musically.
  • An additional piece of material that exemplifies your musicianship and versatility (i.e. an orchestral excerpt, an etude, etc.)
  • Major and chromatic scales
  • Sight reading will be included in the audition

Trumpet

  • Two contrasting selections from the following: Balay: Andante and Allegretto; Hindemith: Sonata for Trumpet and Piano, first movement; Kennen: Sonata for Trumpet and Piano, first movement; Haydn: Concerto in E-Flat for Trumpet, first movement; Hummel: Concerto in E-Flat, first movement.
  • Scales up to 4 sharps and 4 flats, 2 octaves when possible; chromatic scales from low F# to high C
  • Sight reading will be included in the audition

Horn

  • Two contrasting movements chosen from the following solos: Beethoven: Sonata for Horn and Piano; Corelli: Sonata in F Major; Mozart: concerto no. 1, KV 412; Mozart: Concerto No. 2, KV417; Mozart: Concert no. 2, KV 447; Mozart: concerto No. 4, KV 495; Franz Strauss: Nocturno, Op. 7; Franz Strauss: Concerto, Op. 8; Richard Strauss: Concerto No. 1 in E Major, Op. 11
  • One etude chosen from the following books: Gallay, 12 Etudes for Second French Horn, Op 57; Kopprasch, 60 Selected Studies for French Horn; Maxime-Alphonse, Two Hundred New Melodic and Gradual Studies.
  • One major scales of your choice: 2 octaves; One Minor scale of your choice: 2 octaves

Trombone

  • One solo work from the following: Barat, Andante et Allegro, Guillmant, Morceau Symphonique Galliard, Sonata No. 1 or 3
  • Part of a lyrical etude from one of the following: Rochut, Melodus Etude Ostranderant, Melodius Etudes for Bass Trombone
  • All Major scales, two octaves when possible
  • For Bass Trombone audition: One technical study selected from the following: Voxman, Selected Etudes; Peterson, Elementary Etudes; Arban, Methos for Trombone

Tuba

  • One solo chosen from the standard solo literature, such as: Bach, Air and Bouree; Barat, Introduction and Dance; Haddad, Suite for Tuba; Hartley, Suite for Unaccompanied Tuba; Vaughan Williams, Concerto for Tuba, Mvt. 1.
  • Two etudes, one each from these two groups: Group 1: Rochut, Melodius Etudes for Trombone (performed down one octave) Vol. 1, #1, #4, or #6; Bordogni, Bel Canto Studies for Tuba, any etude. Group 2: Blazevich, 70 Advanced Studies for Tuba; Kopprasch, 60 Selected Studies for Tuba
  • Scales up to 4 sharps or 4 flats; 2 octaves.
  • Scholarship Applicants whould be prepared to perform one of the following orchestral excerpts: Mahler, Symphony#1, movement 3; Wagner, Die Meistersinger; Wagner, Ride of the Valkyries
  • sight reading will be included in the audition

Percussion:

  • snare drum - rudiments and a prepared solo
  • mallets (marimba, xylophone, etc.) - two-octave major scales, a prepared two-mallet solo, a prepared four-mallet solo if possible
  • timpani - a prepared solo
  • drumset - optional

You may be given some sight-reading on snare drum and mallets. If you play drumset, we’d like to hear that as well; however, do not prepare a drumset solo.

Jazz Instrumentalists:
  • Two prepared pieces: 1) A mid-tempo jazz standard (Students applying for Jazz Performance must include improvisation). 2) A piece demonstrating instrumental facility. Examples include an up-tempo jazz composition, a classical etude or repertoire, a jazz transcription, or a solo arrangement.

  • 12 major scales and chromatic scale.

  • Basic seventh chord arpeggios (root position) in all keys. Piano and guitar also need to demonstrate voicings.
  • Sightreading will be included in the audition

  • Jazz percussionists:
    Snare Drum - 26 Percussive Arts Society International drum rudiments
    Mallet Percussion - All major scales, two octaves; Chromatic scale, two octaves; sightreading
    Drumset - Demonstrate a variety of grooves and tempi; prepare a solo piece for jazz drumset (example: jazz etude or transcription); Soloing: trading fours with yourself (alternate 4 bars soloing/improvising--and 4 bars playing time) at medium swing tempo, metronome marking quarter note = 120-160; Sightreading, chosen from a standard big band chart.
Composers:

In addition to the above instrumental or vocal audition requirements

  • Improvisation is optional
  • Provide a portfolio of no more than 5 compositions (including written scores and recordings if available). Please deliver these materials at least 1 week prior to the audition to:
    UMBC Department of Music
    ATTN: Connie Bailey
    1000 Hilltop Circle
    Baltimore, MD 21250

 

Music Technology:

In addition to the above instrumental or vocal audition requirements

  • Improvisation is optional.
  • Provide a CD or DVD demonstrating your best recording efforts. Documentation describing the contents of the recording and your role in the production should also be included. Please also describe any other pertinent experience such as software design, sound production etc. that you might have. Please deliver these materials at least 1 week prior to the audition to: UMBC Department of Music
    ATTN: Connie Bailey
    1000 Hilltop Circle
    Baltimore, MD 21250
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