Undergraduate Audition Information


Audition Overview (for music majors and minors)

Step 1: Sign Up

  • Fall 2023 admissionOnce you have been accepted to KU, you may sign up for an audition by selecting "2023 Undergraduate Audition Registration" from the button below. 
  • For existing KU students or Spring transfers- email musicauditions@ku.edu to set up an audition. Please indicate your instrument and desired degree program in this email. 

Step 2: Prepare

  • Select your instrument(s) from the list at the bottom of this page (Areas of Study) for specific requirements .
  • Review your area-specific requirements and contact the listed faculty with any questions.
  • Please read carefully, as some auditions vary by degree program! ​​

Step 3: Audition

  • Join us in Murphy Hall for your live KU School of Music audition or submit your video via the virtual audition instructions- (provided at time of sign up). 
  • Please email musicauditions@ku.edu with any questions.​

Audition Deadlines (for Fall admits)

December 1 - Submission of pre-screening videos for BM Piano Performance (details may be found at Piano - BM Performance)

March 15 - Priority date for scholarship consideration. 

June 1- Priority date for entry auditions to KU School of Music

Fall 2023 Audition Dates

KU School of Music offers live & virtual audition options. For students auditioning for Fall of 2023, the live dates will occur on Feb. 11th and Feb. 18th, 2023 . The virtual option, indicated with in the registration, is open until June 1st with a Scholarship priority date of March 15. 

For students attending Prairie Winds- you may audition during that weekend as an alternative to Feb 11 or 18. There will be a place to indicate your audition in the PW registration. That registration will open later in the fall of 2022. 

Questions? Email musicauditions@ku.edu for more information.

The school has a live audition with a priority date of March 15 for scholarship consideration. Students may submit an audition through to June 1st for entry into a major or minor. 

*2023 UNDERGRADUATE AUDITION REGISTRATION* Now OPEN for Fall 2023!

If you cannot attend a live audition, email musicauditions@ku.edu to make other arrangements.

Audition Requirements

KU School of Music will be offering both live and virtual auditions.

Questions? Email musicauditions@ku.edu for more information.

Select your instrument from the list below. Read carefully as some instruments require different auditions for different degree programs.

If you have questions regarding the appropriate repertoire, please contact the faculty member listed for your instrument.

Areas of Study

  • Two contrasting movements or etudes
  • Scales: major and minor
  • Students applying for the performance major should also prepare three orchestral excerpts.

Suggested repertoire includes works of: 

  • Bozza
  • Galliard
  • Saint-Saëns
  • Tansman
  • Telemann
  • Concertos of Mozart, Weber, Hummel, or Vivaldi
  • Etudes of Orefici, Milde or Weissenborn. 

Faculty Contact: Eric Stomberg, stomberg@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

​​For undergraduate cello auditions (BM, BME, BA, Minor), please prepare the following: 

​​1) a movement of a Bach suite

​2) the first movement of a concerto (e.g. Haydn C Major, Saint-Saëns, or Lalo), -OR- an equivalent virtuoso piece (e.g. Popper Hungarian Rhapsody).  

​Memorization is encouraged but not required.  

Accompaniment is optional. 

Faculty Contact: Hannah Collins, hannah.collins@ku.edu 

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

  • Scales: full-range chromatic, major and minor.
  • Two contrasting movements from the standard repertoire which can include two contrasting etudes.
  • Performance majors (B.M. Clarinet) should also include three stylistically contrasting orchestral excerpts.
  • Suggested composers include Weber, Saint-Saens, Poulenc, Finzi, Rose, Cavallini, Mozart, or Debussy. 

Faculty Contact: Stephanie Zelnick, zelnick@ku.edu

Only students wishing to apply for the BME in Music Education or the BM Music Therapy oay study classical guitar as their applied instrument.

If you are interested in auditioning for a BA or BM in jazz studies, please reference the jazz guitar audition requirements.

  • Scales: two and three octave major and minor diatonic scales
  • Sight-reading: a single-line melody in upper positions
  • One piece from the following OR a piece of comparable level: 
    • Milan Six Pavanes
    • Bach Prelude in D minor
    • Anonymous Six Lute Pieces of the Renaissance 
    • Ponce Preludes
    • Tarrega Twelve Preludes Sanz Pavanas
    • Carcassi Etudes
    • Sor Twenty Studies
    • Brouwer Simple Etudes

Faculty Contact: Alex Frank, alexfrank@ku.edu 

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

Accompaniment is optional. 

  • Scales: two 3-octave scales of the student's choice
  • One movement of a Bach cello suite or a baroque sonata
  • One movement of a standard concerto or piece of comparable difficulty.

Faculty Contact: Richard Ryan, reryan@ku.edu

Audition for Performance Major (B.M.)

  • Two contrasting works or movements from major euphonium/tuba works or transcriptions that are Grade 5 or higher in difficulty. 
  • Two contrasting wind band/orchestral excerpts if desired. 
  • Major and Minor Scales. 

Audition for Music Education (B.M.E.-ME), Music Therapy (B.M.-MT), Bachelor of Arts in Music (B.A.), or Music Composition, Music Theory, or Musicology (B.M. or B.A.)

  • Two contrasting works or transcriptions Grade 4 or higher. 
  • Major Scales.

Faculty Contact: Scott Watson, scwatson@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

The audition consists of all of the following: 

1) One Baroque sonata (Bach, Handel, Quantz, Telemann, or Vivaldi)

2) One piece from the French Conservatory repertoire (repertoire from the Flute Music By French Composers or a piece of equivalent difficulty)

3) Sight reading

4) Scales: Full-range chromatic scale; major and minor scales of two or more octaves.  

Contact: Daniel Velascodvelasco@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

  • Two-octave major scales
  • Sight reading
  • Two contrasting movements chosen from major concertos.
    • You may substitute one of these with a selection from the Kopprasch 60 Studies
    • No accompaniment is necessary.  ​

Examples of possible audition repertoire include:  

  • Mozart Concertos 1-4
  • Beethoven Sonata
  • Schumann Adagio and Allegro
  • Saint-Saens Morceau du Concert 
  • F. Strauss Concerto
  • Strauss Concerto #1
  • Dukas Villanelle
  • Gliere Concerto
  • Jacob Concerto

Faculty Contact: Paul Stevens, pstevens@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

  • Two works or movements from larger works of contrasting style e.g. Handel, Scarlatti, Dussek, Debussy, Andres, Tournier, Salzedo, Renie.  

    • At least one solo should be memorized
  • One cadenza from an orchestral work such as: Tchaikovsky Waltz of the Flowers or Swan Lake, Britten Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, or Rimsky-Korsakov Capriccio Espagñol

Faculty Contact: Erin Wood, kansasharpist@ku.edu

The KU School of Music currently offers a B.A. in jazz studies.  

Limited spaces are available for the Jazz Studies program.

A limited number of scholarships are available. 

Please contact Professor Dan Gailey to inquire about space in your particular instrument.

You must provide your own Jamey Aebersold play-along CD (Vol. 54 will work).  

  • Two contrasting jazz standards (such as "Autumn Leaves" in concert G minor as a medium swing, and "Blue Bossa" in concert C minor as a Latin tune)

    1. Play a chorus of melody,
    2. Followed by a chorus of walking bass line (bossa nova bass line on "Blue Bossa"),
    3. Followed by a chorus of improvised solo.  
  • Sight-reading
  • Selected major and minor scales.

Faculty Contact: Dan Gailey, dgailey@ku.edu

The KU School of Music currently offers a B.A. in jazz studies.  

Limited spaces are available for the Jazz Studies program.

A limited number of scholarships are available. 

Please contact Professor Dan Gailey to inquire about space in your particular instrument.  

You will be asked to demonstrate the following grooves/styles:  

  • Medium swing
  • Fast swing/bebop
  • Swing shuffle
  • Bossa nova
  • Samba
  • Jazz waltz
  • Medium swing again with brushes.  

You will also be asked to do some sight-reading.

Faculty Contact: Dan Gailey, dgailey@ku.edu

The KU School of Music currently offers a B.A. in jazz studies.  

Limited spaces are available for the Jazz Studies program.

A limited number of scholarships are available. 

Please contact Professor Dan Gailey to inquire about space in your particular instrument.  

You must provide your own Jamey Aebersold play-along CD (Vol. 54 will work).  

  • Two contrasting jazz standards (such as "Autumn Leaves" in concert G minor as a medium swing, and "Blue Bossa" in concert C minor as a Latin tune)

    1. Play a chorus of melody,
    2. Followed by a chorus of comping,
    3. Followed by a chorus of improvised solo.
  • Sight-reading
  • Major and minor scales.​

Faculty Contact: Dan Gailey, dgailey@ku.edu

The KU School of Music currently offers a B.A. in jazz studies.  

Limited spaces are available for the Jazz Studies program.

A limited number of scholarships are available.  

Please contact Professor Dan Gailey to inquire about space in your particular instrument. 

You must provide your own Jamey Aebersold play-along CD (Vol. 54 will work).​

  • Two contrasting jazz standards (such as "Autumn Leaves" in concert G minor as a medium swing, and "Blue Bossa" in concert C minor as a Latin tune). 

    1. Play a chorus of melody in right hand with left hand comping,
    2. Followed by a chorus of two-hands comping
    3. Followed by a chorus of improvised solo.  
  • Sight-reading
  • Selected major and minor scales.

Faculty Contact: Dan Gailey, dgailey@ku.edu

The KU School of Music currently offers a B.A. in jazz studies. 

Limited spaces are available for the Jazz Studies program.

A limited number of scholarships are available. 

Please contact Professor Dan Gailey to inquire about space in your particular instrument.   

You must provide your own Jamey Aebersold play-along CD (Vol. 54 will work).

  • Two contrasting jazz standards (such as "Autumn Leaves" in concert G minor as a medium swing, and "Blue Bossa" in concert C minor as a Latin tune);

    1. Play a chorus of melody,
    2. Followed by two choruses of improvised solo.
  • Sight-reading
  • Selected major and minor scales the full range of your instrument.

Faculty Contact: Dan Gailey, dgailey@ku.edu

The KU School of Music currently offers a B.A. in jazz studies.

Limited spaces are available for the Jazz Studies program.

A limited number of scholarships are available.

Please contact Professor Dan Gailey to inquire about space in your particular instrument.

You must provide your own Jamey Aebersold play-along CD (Vol. 54 will work).

  • Two contrasting jazz standards (such as "Autumn Leaves" in concert G minor as a medium swing, and "Blue Bossa" in concern C minor as a Latin tune);

    1. Play a chorus of melody,
    2. Followed by two choruses of improvised solo.
  • Sight-reading
  • Selected major and minor scales the full range of your instrument.

Faculty Contact: Dan Gailey, dgailey@ku.edu

The KU School of Music currently offers a B.A. in jazz studies.

Limited spaces are available for the Jazz Studies program.

A limited number of scholarships are available.

Please contact Dan Gailey to inquire about space in your particular instrument.

You must provide your own Jamey Aebersold play-along CD (Vol. 54 will work).

  • Two contrasting jazz standards (such as "Autumn Leaves" in concert G minor as a medium swing, and "Blue Bossa" in concert C minor as a Latin tune);

    1. Play one chorus of melody,
    2. Followed by two choruses of improvised solo.
  • Sight-reading
  • Selected major and minor scales the full range of your instrument.

Faculty Contact: Dan Gailey, dgailey@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

  • Scales

    1. Full-range chromatic
    2. All major scales
    3. Minor scales in any form up to four sharps and four flats.  
  • Two solo selections demonstrating contrasting style and tempo. Selections may be from the same work.  

Suggested repertoire includes concerti or sonatas by:

  • Marcello
  • Haydn
  • Vivaldi
  • Handel
  • Saint Saëns
  • Poulenc.
  • Etudes by Ferling or Barret are also acceptable. 

Faculty Contact: Margaret Marco, mmarco@ku.edu

Organ auditions consist of:

  1. A day-long visit
  2. Tour of the facilities
  3. Audition.

Contact the organ faculty directly to schedule your audition and determine appropriate repertoire.

Faculty Contact: Michael Bauer, mbauer@ku.edu

Applicants for all degree programs must demonstrate proficiency in at least two of the following three main areas of percussion performance for entrance into the Percussion Studio and in all three to be considered for a scholarship.

Please contact Sam Um with any questions about the audition repertoire.

Snare Drum

  1. A published concert-style solo or etude from Anthony Cirone's Portraits in Rhythm, Jacques Delecluse's Douze Etudes pour Caisse-Claire, or equivalent.
  2. A published rudimental-style solo or etude from Charles Wilcoxon's The All American Drummer, John Pratt's Fourteen Rudimental Contest Solos, or equivalent. 
  3. Sight-reading

​Keyboard Percussion (Marimba, Vibraphone, Xylophone)

  1. Two Mallets: A published two-mallet solo or etude from Morris Goldenberg's Modern School for Xylophone, Marimba and Vibraphone, J.S. Bach Violin Sonatas and Partitas or Cello Suites, or equivalent. 
  2. Four Mallets: A published four-mallet solo or etude. 
  3. Sight-reading
  4. Scales in all major and minor keys

Timpani

  1. A published solo or etude from Richard Hochrainer’s Etuden für Timpani (Vol. 1-3), Saul Goodman's Modern Method for Timpani, or equivalent. 
  2. Tuning of various intervals.

Faculty Contact: Sam Seyong Um, sam.um@ku.edu 

B.M. Performance

For consideration into the Bachelor of Music for Piano Performance, applicants must first submit a pre-screening video.

If their video is satisfactory, they will be invited for a live audition.

Note: Piano scholarships are awarded only to students who enroll in the four-year BM degree in piano performance.

STEP 1: PRESCREENING 

BM, Piano Performance

• Minimum 10 minutes of music

• At least 2 works from different periods

• Single movements of Classical sonatas accepted

All selections must be played from memory.  The recording does not have to be professional quality, but should be a clear and accurate representation of your playing.  Poor sound quality will lessen your chances of admission. Please submit your pre-screen video via an unlisted YouTube and send it to sash@ku.eduFor help on uploading an unlisted video, watch this video.

Deadline: Pre-screening submissions via Acceptd are due by December 1, 2021.

Step 2: Final Audition 

BM, Piano Performance

• Minimum 20 minutes of music

• Repertoire must include:

• Any major work of J.S. Bach (excluding Inventions/Sinfonias and small works)

• Complete Classical sonata or variation set by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert

• One etude

• Work of applicant’s choice from the Romantic period or 20th/21st Century

• Memorization is required for all works with the exception of 20th/21st Century works of exceptional difficulty.

Faculty Contact: Scott McBride Smith, smcbsmith@ku.edu.

All Other Degrees

Note: Piano scholarships are awarded only to students who enroll in the four-year BM degree in piano performance.

Audition for Music Education (B.M.E.), Music Therapy (B.M.), Bachelor of Arts in Music (B.A.), or Music Composition, Music Theory, Musicology (B.M. or B.A.), or Music Minor: 

• No pre-screening is required.

• One each of the following:

  1. Any work by Bach
  2. Any movement from a sonata by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven or Schubert
  3. Any contrasting work from the Romantic, Impressionist, or 20th/21st Century periods
  • Two of the three selections must be played from memory.

Faculty Contact: Michael Kirkendoll, michaelkirkendoll@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

  1. Scales: full-range chromatic and major scales. 
  2. Two movements or etudes of contrasting style and tempo.

Examples of satisfactory audition repertoire include:

  • Lunde Sonata
  • Bonneau Suite
  • Bozza Aria
  • Eccles Sonata
  • Rueff Chanson et Passepied
  • Voxman Selected Studies
  • Bassi Virtuoso Studies
  • Ferling 48 Etudes.

It should be noted that these are merely examples of audition repertoire, but pieces of comparable difficulty are accepted. 

Faculty Contact: Vince Gnojek, vgnojek@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

  • Scales: Two-octave major scales with arpeggios
  • Perform:
    1. Bordogni (Rochut), Melodious Etude #3 or #7"
    2. Voxman, Selected Studies for Trombone: page 5 (Blazhevich, “Moderato”)
    3. One (1) work selected from or of comparable difficulty to the list below. Accompaniment is optional.

Tenor Trombone Suggested Repertoire:

  • Barat Andante et Allegro
  • Boda Sonatina
  • Galliard Sonata No. 1
  • Guilmant Morceau Symphonique
  • Gregson Divertimento
  • Sandstrom, Song for Lotta
  • Saint-Saëns Cavatine
  • Sulek Sonata vox Gabrieli
  • Weber Romance
  • David, Concertino (first page)   

Bass Trombone Suggested Repertoire: 

  • Hindemith Drei leichte Stücke
  • Lebedev Concerto in One Movement
  • McCarty Sonata
  • Lassen/Bollinger 2 Fantasy Pieces
  • Galliard/Mortimer Sonata #1
  • Semler-Collery, Barcarolle et chanson bachique
  • Tcherepnin, Andante
  • Warburton Among Us.

Faculty Contact: Michael Davidson, mdavidsn@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

  • Scales: Two-octave major scales
  • Sight reading
  • One piece from below or a piece of comparable level. Accompaniment is optional. 

Trumpet Suggested Repertoire:

  • Arutunian Concerto
  • Balay Prelude et Ballade
  • Handel Aria con Variazioni
  • Haydn Concerto (movements 1 and 2)
  • Kennan Sonata, (movement 1)
  • Ropartz Andante and Allegro. 

These particular pieces are not required but are given as a general idea of repertoire many choose to play. Accepted students come from a variety of backgrounds and experiences and the audition is to show not only current ability through the repertoire chosen but also potential for success in a major music program. Prospective students are encouraged to contact Professor Leisring by email with any questions about repertoire well before the audition. 

Faculty Contact: Stephen Leisring, leisring@ku.edu

Audition for Performance Major (B.M.)

  • Two contrasting works or movements from major euphonium/tuba works or transcriptions that are Grade 5 or higher in difficulty.
  • Two contrasting wind band/orchestral excerpts if desired.
  • Major and minor scales.

Audition for Music Education (B.M.E-ME.), Music Therapy (B.M.-MT), or Music Composition, Music Theory, or Musicology (B.M. or B.A.)

  • Two contrasting works or transcriptions Grade 4 or higher.
  • Major Scales

Faculty Contact: Scott Watson, scwatson@ku.edu 

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

Memorization is not required but strongly recommended. Accompaniment is optional.  

  1. A movement of a solo Bach cello suite or violin sonata or partita transcribed for viola
  2. A movement of a concerto originally composed for viola, e.g. Telemann, Hoffmeister, or Stamitz. 

Faculty Contact: Boris Vaynerbvayner@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

Memorization is not required but strongly recommended. Accompaniment is optional. 

Prepare the following: 

  1. One movement of an unaccompanied partita or sonata by J.S. Bach​
  2. The first movement of a standard concerto (i.e. Bruch, Lalo, or Mozart) with cadenza (when applicable), OR a piece of comparable difficulty.  

Faculty Contact: David Colwell, david.colwell@ku.edu

Requirements for entry into all undergraduate degree programs

Prepare two memorized selections in contrasting styles, including at least one classical. 

  • All music must be performed with piano accompaniment. 
  • A foreign language piece is not required. 
  • An accompanist will be provided, but your own accompanist is welcome.  

If utilizing our accompanist, you must provide sheet music that meets the following requirements:

  • Music must be in a 3 ring binder. 
  • Easy to read, a double-sided score 
  • Pages may be copied back to back, or taped together, no staples, please!  
  • No loose pages.  
  • No plastic sleeve protectors.
  • Alternatively, a printed score may be used, provided that the score opens easily, will stay open on the music rack, and pages can be turned easily.  

Faculty Contact:  John Stephens, jastephe@ku.edu


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