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Winds & Percussion Auditions & Interviews

Undergraduate Requirements & Dates

All applicants to the School of Music, Theatre & Dance are required to create an Artistic Profile to demonstrate artistic preparation for their program of study. Auditions are by appointment and will be scheduled after a successful review of the complete application materials.

 

Pre-screening Requirements

Clarinet, flute, percussion, and trumpet applicants to the following programs are required to submit pre-screening recordings as specified below.

  • BFA in Jazz & Contemporary Improvisation
  • BM in Composition
  • BM in Instrumental Music Education
  • BM in Music & Technology
  • BM in Music Theory
  • BM in Musicology
  • BM in Performance
  • BM in Performance with Teacher Certification
  • BMA in Multidisciplinary Studies
  • BMA in Performance

 

Clarinet Pre-Screening Requirements

Please submit video recordings of at least two contrasting pieces. (Total duration: 5–15 minutes; single movements of larger works are acceptable)

 

Flute Pre-Screening Requirements

Please submit video recordings of the following:

  1. B Major scale (2 octaves, not extended)
  2. B Minor scale (2 octaves, not extended)
  3. Two contrasting pieces: Single movements of larger works are acceptable. Accompaniment is preferred if the piece has accompaniment.

Applicants who have attended the MPulse Flute Institute in the past two years are exempt. Please contact our auditions coordinator, to enquire about receiving a pre-screening waiver.

 

Percussion Pre-Screening Requirements

Please upload five unedited video recordings of the following. It is important to submit high-quality videos free of audio clipping or distortion. Test camera/mic placement so your playing and most importantly, your sound, is fully and accurately represented. Frame the video so that your hands can be clearly seen and review the quality of the recording prior to submitting your work.

  1. Spoken Introduction: Please introduce yourself, tell us where you are from, and what repertoire you will be performing for your pre-screening video. Next, tell us what degree program you are interested in (music education, performance, etc.), and why you are interested in the percussion program at U-M.
    (Total length: 2–3 minutes)
  2. Snare Drum Solo or Etude (concert or rudimental—no orchestral excerpts)
  3. Two-Mallet Solo or Etude (no orchestral excerpts)
  4. Four-Mallet Solo or Etude
  5. Timpani Solo or Etude: No solos from Elliot Carter's Eight Pieces for Four Timpani. Please include video of yourself tuning the timpani prior to beginning to play.

 

Trumpet Pre-Screening Requirements

Please submit video recordings of the following:

  1. Vassily Brant, Orchestral Etudes: Etude #1
  2. Ottorino Respighi, Pines of Rome: Mvt II — Off-stage trumpet solo

 

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In-person Audition Requirements

 

Bassoon

Prepare one or two movements from a standard concerto, sonata, or other major work for bassoon. In addition, please prepare two contrasting etudes equivalent in difficulty to the Concert Studeies by Ludwig Milde.

Clarinet

Prepare two compositions of your choice from the basic repertoire representing different styles. In the case of compositions with several movements, it may not be necessary to play the complete work. In addition, please prepare two etudes showing legato style and articulation.

Euphonium

Prepare 10–15 minutes of solo or etude literature representing your highest level of proficiency. Memorization is not required. Additionally, you may be asked to sight-read and play two-octave major and chromatic scales from memory.

Flute

Prepare three compositions from the stardard solo flute repertoire. Please include a movement of a concerto as one of your selections. You may perform one movement from a composition with multiple movements or an advanced etude. Representative audition repertoire include Mozart concerti, Paris Conservatoire pieces, 20th century compositions, and French, German, or English Baroque sonatas.

In addition, please prepre two orchestral excerpts that represent your highest level of proficience.

Memorization of all major, minor, and chromatic scales is assumed and may be assessed at the audition. Memorization of solo literature and orchestral excerpts is not required. Competitive undergraduate applicants typically have a minimum of five years of private study and significant ensemble experience.

French Horn

Prepare 20 minutes of solo/etude/excerpt literature representing different styles and your highest level of proficiency. In addition, sight-reading and two-octave major and minor scales may be assessed at the audition.

Multiple tonguing, lip trills, hand stopping, and transposition may be required in the sight-reading material. Memorization is expected for scales only.

Oboe

Prepare approximately 20 minutes of major solo literature including music from the Baroque and 20th century periods. In addition, please prepare two orchestral excerpts of your choice. Knowledge of all major and minor scales is assumed, and sight-reading will be assessed.

Percussion

Please prepare the following selections:

  1. Concert Snare Drum Solo or Etude
    Delecluse, Cirone, Goldenberg, Peters, or equivalent
  2. Rudimental Snare Drum Solo or Etude
    Pratt, Wilcoxon, Tompkins, Markovitch, or equivalent
  3. Two-Mallet Keyboard Solo, Transcription, or Etude
    J.S. Bach: Sonatas & Partitas for Solo Violin, Suite for Solo Cello, Hatch: Furioso & Valse, Abe: Prism, G.H. Green/Breuer: Xylophone Rags, Goldenberg Etudes, or equivalent
  4. Four-Mallet Keyboard Solo, Transcription, or Etude
    Smadbeck: Rhythm Song, Abe: Frogs, Dream of the Cherry Blossoms, Michi, Stout: Two Mexican Dances, Sammut: Rotations, Libertango, or equivalent
  5. Timpani Solo or Etude
    Firth, Hochrainer, Peters, Carroll, Delecluse or equivalent
    No solos from Elliot Carter's 8 pieces for solo timpani. Timpani tuning and sight-reading will also be evaluated

Orchestral excerpts may be included in your live audition, but are not required. Memorization of repertoire is neither required nor discouraged.

A recorded audition will only be considered in unusual circumstances for which an in-person audition in Ann Arbor is extremely difficult or not possible—international travel, for example. If you cannot make the trip to Ann Arbor, please email Professor Gramley (jgramley@umich.edu) and Professor Ovalle (ovalle@umich.edu) for permission to audition with a set of recordings. If your application and pre-screening videos have passed their initial evaluation, the faculty will consider your request.

Visit the Percussion Studio page for more details.

Saxophone

Prepare 15 minutes of alto saxophone solo literature representing your highest proficiency. Suggested literature includes the Sonata by Creston, Concertino da Camera by Ibert, Concerto by Glazunov, and Prelude, Cadence et Finale by Desenclos.

In addition, please prepare two Ferling Etudes (one slow and one that displays your technical skills).

You will also be assessed on all twelve major scales (full range B-flat to F-sharp 3) and on major thirds in all keys (full range-varied articulations). Be prepared to demonstrate your altissimo skills, overtones, and/or altissimo scales. Tuning response will also be tested.

Jazz improvisation skills are welcomed and, if you have significant jazz experience, you are encouraged to request a separate audition with our Jazz & Improvisation Studies faculty. Indicate your request for a supplementary jazz audition on the application or by contacting our Auditions Coordinator (music.auditions@umich.edu).

Trombone

Prepare 15 minutes of contrasting solo and/or etude literature that represents your highest level of proficiency. Memorization is not required. In addition, you may be asked to sight-read and to play two-octave major scales from memory.

Trumpet

Prepare 20 minutes of the standard solo recital literature for trumpet representing your highest level of proficiency. Memorization is not required.

Additionally, please prepare a selection of excerpts from the orchestral repertoire representing your highest level of proficiency. Memorization is not required.

You may be asked to sight-read and to play two-octave major, minor, and chromatic scales from memory.

Tuba

Prepare 10–15 minutes of solo or etude literature and/or orchestral excerpts representing your highest level of proficiency. Memorization is not required.

You may be asked to sight-read and to play two-octave major and chromatic scales from memory.

 

Recorded Auditions

We strongly recommend auditioning and/or interviewing in Ann Arbor. However, applicants (except percussionists) who live more than 300 miles from Ann Arbor may upload a set of recordings in lieu of a live audition.

Audition requirements are the same as for an in-person audition. An accompanist is recommended for a recorded audition. Recorded auditions must be submitted on your Artistic Profile no later than January 15.

 

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