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Graduate Audition

Requirements


Not all graduate music degree programs require an audition for acceptance. Please see the Graduate Admissions page for a breakdown of which programs require an audition, and for information about how to apply.
Music Department Travel Directions & Map (pdf)

When an audition is required for admission to a Graduate Program, applicants are expected to perform in various period styles within the repertory of their instrument/voice, before March 1st for fall admission. SIGHT READING WILL BE REQUIRED AT ALL AUDITIONS

Click on your instrument (or scroll down) for specific graduate audition requirements:

Flute
Oboe
Clarinet
Bassoon
Saxophone

Trumpet
Trombone
Horn (French Horn)
Euphonium
Tuba

 

Violin
Viola
Cello
Double Bass

Voice
Piano/Collaborative Piano
Percussion
Jazz Composition & Arranging

SUBMITTING A RECORDED AUDITION

Participating in an on-campus audition is highly recommended, especially if a student wishes to be considered for a scholarship. If a student is unable to attend a regularly scheduled audition, it is possible to request a Special Audition (see Application/Audition Request Form). If distance prohibits a student from coming to campus for a live audition, a CD or DVD may be submitted by mail in addition to the online Application/Audition Request Form.

All CDs (or DVD's) should be submitted by mail, with a listing of the program performed, in addition to a completed online Music Application/Audition Request Form. Please send the CD or DVD to John Huling, Director of Admissions, 271 Fine Arts Center, UMass, Amherst MA 01003) Call 413-545-6048 or email jhuling@music.umass.edu with any questions.

The Department reserves the right to require a live audition in addition to a recording before granting final admission to any degree program.

Graduate applicants in Jazz Composition and Arranging (click for requirements/more info) are not required to audition, but are encouraged to do so. While the portfolio is the primary focal point of the Composition/Arranging application and subsequent degree, a sample CD or live audition of the applicant's performing abilities is encouraged, as is the participation in large and small jazz ensembles while pursuing the Masters degree. A particular performing strength can sometimes compensate for a smaller writing portfolio as an initial foray into the Masters in Jazz Composition/Arranging.

Graduate jazz applicants may contact Program Director & Professor Jeffrey Holmes, jwholmes@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-6046, for additional details about the program and audition information.

Graduate Flute

Professor Christopher Krueger, krueger@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-2918

  1. Three movements demonstrating technical, lyrical and articulation abilities, as well as a command of different historical styles.
  2. Three contrasting orchestral excerpts.

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Graduate Oboe

Professor Fredric T. Cohen, fcohen@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-4688

A - Repertoire

  • Three contrasting musical selections that demonstrate technical, lyrical and articulation abilities, as well as a command of different historical styles.
  • Three contrasting orchestral excerpts

B - Technique
Major and minor scales, arpeggios and chromatic scales slurred and with standard articulation.

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Graduate Clarinet

Professor Michael Sussman, msussma@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-4776

Three solo selections (concerti, sonatas, solo works) from various composers, styles, historical periods, etc; that demonstrate lyrical, technical, articulation, and style skills at an advanced level.

Three contrasting major orchestral clarinet solos.

Knowledge and proficiency in all major and minor scales and chords, chromatic scales (full range both slurred and with typical articulations)

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Graduate Bassoon

Professor Stephen Walt, swalt@music.umass.edu, (413) 577-2347

A - Repertoire

  • Two (2) contrasting movements from the Mozart or Weber concertos or the Saint-Saens sonata
  • Two (2) etudes, one fast and one slow, selected from Milde's Scale and Arpeggio Studies, Concert Studies, or the equivalent.

B - Technique
Major and minor scales, arpeggios and chromatic scales slurred and with standard articulation throughout the practical range of the instrument.

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Graduate Saxophone

Professor Jonathan Hulting-Cohen, hultingcohen@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-2810

For graduate classical saxophone auditions, please prepare the following:

  • Two contrasting works demonstrating your greatest artistry

  • To discuss your musical and academic history and possible future goals

  • To demonstrate your intonation capabilities by playing roots, fifths and thirds in all keys and registers against a drone

 

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Graduate Trumpet

Professor Eric Berlin, berlin@music.umass.edu, (413) 577-1582, Trumpet Studio website

  1. Etude #2 from 36 Etudes Transcendantes by Theo Charlier
  2. One of the following:
    1. Georges Enesco Legend
    2. Arthur Honeggar Intrada
  3. One contrasting selection of the candidate's choice.
  4. Orchestral Excerpts
    1. Beethoven Leonore Overture #3 (offstage call)
    2. Mahler Symphony Number 5 (first movement opening)
    3. Moussorgsky Pictures at an Exhibition (Promenade)
    4. Rimsky Korsakov Scheherezade (Movement 3 G-I, Movement 4 P-U)
    5. Respighi Pines of Rome (Offstage Solo)
    6. Stravinsky Petrouchka (ballerina's dance and waltz)

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Graduate Trombone

Professor Greg Spiridopoulos, gspiro@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-6059

Tenor Trombone:

  1. Two contrasting movements of a solo to show musicianship, range, technique and variety
  2. Choose an etude from either Bitch, Bozza or Rochut book 2 or 3
  3. Choose three from the following orchestral excerpts: Mozart's Requiem Tuba Mirum, Ravel's Bolero, Mahler Symphony No. 3, 1st movement solo, Berlioz Hungarian March, Brahms Symphony No. 1 last movement chorale

Bass Trombone:

  1. Two contrasting movements of a solo to show musicianship, range, technique and variety
  2. A movement from a Bach Cello Suite or a Rochut Etude, down an octave
  3. Choose three from the following orchestral excerpts: Brahms Symphony No. 1 last movement chorale, Berlioz Hungarian March, Robert Schumann Symphony No. 3 fourth movement, Wagner Act 3 from Lohengrin (low octave), Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 6 first movement

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Graduate Horn (French Horn)

Studio Site
Professor Josh Michal, jmichal@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-7735

A - Repertoire

  • Two solo works from the standard repertoire and three to five standard orchestral excerpts.

B - Technique
Major, minor, and chromatic scales to demonstrate range and facility.

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Graduate Euphonium

Professor John Bottomley, jbottoml@music.umass.edu, (413) 577-2346

All graduate applicants should prepare:

A melodious etude (to demonstrate good sound, solid intonation, and musicianship) and a study (to demonstrate technical facility), selected from such collections as Arban's Conservatory Method; Marcel Bitsch, 20 études pour trompette; Bordogni/Rochut, Melodious Etudes for the Trombone (down an octave); Charlier, 36 études transcendantes pour trompette; and Clarke's Technical Studies for the Cornet;

All scales;

Several of the major band excerpts; and

A solo of your choice, such as Jan Bach, Concert Variations; James Curnow, Symphonic Variants; Joseph Horovitz, Concerto; Simone Mantia, All Those Endearing Young Charms; Ponchielli, Concerto; Walter Ross, Capriccio furioso; and Alec Wilder, Sonata.

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Graduate Tuba

Professor John Bottomley, jbottoml@music.umass.edu, (413) 577-2346

All graduate applicants should be able to demonstrate both the CC and F (or Eb) tubas at the advanced level.

Prepare: Two contrasting solos and several of the major orchestral excerpts;

Suggested Solo List:
Sonata (Concerto) by Bruce Broughton (Masters Music Publications)
Sonatine by Jacques Casterede (Alphonse Leduc)
Sonate fur Tuba & Klavier by Zoltan Gardonyi (Edition Walahll)
Sonata by Paul Hindemith (European American-Schott)
Sonata for (F) Tuba and Piano, Op. 34 by Trygve Madsen (Musikk-Huset A/S)
Sonata for Tuba and Piano by Alec Wilder (Mentor Music)
Concertino by Eugene Bozza (Alphonse Leduc)
Three Miniatures by Anthony Plog (Editions BIM)
Tuba Concerto by Martin Ellerby (Maecenas Music, Ltd.)
Concerto for Tuba or Bass Trombone by Eric Ewazen (Southern Music Company)
Concerto for Tuba and Strings by Arild Plau (Ovation)
Concerto for Tuba and Orchestra by John Williams (Hal Leonard Corporation)
Three Furies by James Grant (Grantwood Music Press)
Alarum by Edward Gregson (Intrada Music Publishing)
Encounters II by William Kraft (MCA Music/Editions BIM)
Midnight Realities by Morgan Powell (Brass Music, Ltd)
Salve Venere, Salve Marte by John Stevens (Editions BIM)

Suggested Orchestral Excerpt List: Prelude to Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg by Richard Wagner
The Ride of the Valkyries by Richard Wagner
Benvenuto Cellini by Hector Berlioz
    Rehearsal #15 through the third measure of rehearsal #17
    Rehearsal #18 through the fifth measure of rehearsal #19
The Damnation of Faust by Hector Berlioz
Symphonie Fantastique by Hector Berlioz
Symphony No. 2 by Johannes Brahms
    Mvt. IV: Rehearsal "O" to the end
Symphony No. 7 by Anton Bruckner
    Mvt. IV: Rehearsal "P" to rehearsal "S"
Symphonic Metamorphoses by Paul Hindemith
    Mvt. II: Turandot, Scherzo: complete
Symphony No. 1 by Gustav Mahler
    Mvt. III: complete
Symphony No. 2 by Gustav Mahler
    Mvt. V: Chorale, From the second measure of rehearsal #10 through rehearsal #11
Symphony No. 5 by Gustav Mahler
    Part II. Mvt. 3: Scherzo, from the sixteenth measure of rehearsal #15 through rehearsal #17
Symphony No. 5 by Serge Prokofiev
    Mvt. I: complete
Romeo and Juliet, Suite No. 2 by Serge Prokofiev
    Mvt. V: From the fourth measure of rehearsal #49 through rehearsal #51
Fountains of Rome by O. Respighi
Sensamaya by Silvestre Revueltas
    Rehearsal #2 to rehearsal #11
    Rehearsal #33 to rehearsal #41
Symphony No. 8 by Dimitri Shostakovich
    Scherzo
Ein Heldenleben by Richard Strauss
Till Eulenspiegel by Richard Strauss
    From rehearsal #13 to two measures before rehearsal #14
    From rehearsal #25 to seven measures before rehearsal #26
    From three measures before rehearsal #37 to four measures before
Petrouchka by Igor Stravinsky
    Peasant with Bear: From rehearsal #189 through rehearsal #191
    Masqueraders: From rehearsal #240 through three measure before rehearsal #242

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Graduate Violin

Professor Elizabeth Chang, echang@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-0023   
Link to Violin Studio webpage

A - Repertoire

  • One movement from a major violin concerto
  • Two contrasting movements from the unaccompanied Bach Sonatas and Partitas (a dance movement and its double constitute one movement)

B - Technique

  • An etude or caprice by Paganini, Wieniawski, Gavinies, Rode or Dont Op. 35
  • Major and minor scales in three octaves (for Recorded Audition, one key will suffice)

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Graduate Viola

Professor Kathryn Lockwood, klockwood@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-9457
Viola Studio website

  • Two movements from the Bach Cello Suites, or two movements from the Bach Violin Sonatas and Partitas
  • One movement from the standard sonata repertoire, such as Brahms, Schubert, Clarke or Schumann
  • One movement from a major concerto, such as Walton, Bartok, or Hindemith

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Graduate Cello

Professor Astrid Schween, aschween@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-9646

A - Repertoire

  • One movement from a major concerto
  • One movement from the Bach Suites for Unaccompanied Cello

B - Technique

  • An etude by Popper or Piatti
  • Major and minor scales in four octaves

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Graduate Double Bass

Professor Salvatore Macchia, smacchia@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-6053

  1. One movement of a major concerto
  2. A twentieth century unaccompanied solo piece
  3. Several contrasting orchestral excerpts

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Graduate Voice

Professor William Hite, williamhite@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-6049

For Voice applicants: A pre-audition screening CD must be sent to the Department (Music Admissions Director, 271 Fine Arts Center, UMass, Amherst MA 01003) at least 3 weeks prior to your requested audition date for review by the voice faculty. You will then be notified as to whether the faculty would like you to perform a live audition.

Vocal Pre-Audition Recording Requirements: Three songs and/or arias (at least one accompanied), in contrasting languages and styles.

REGULAR AUDITION REQUIREMENTS:
Please prepare five contrasting songs and/or arias in four of the following languages:
French, English, German, Italian, Latin, Spanish
Taken from four of the following periods:
Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Twentieth Century, Contemporary

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Graduate Piano

Professor Nadine Shank, shank@nadineshank.com, (413) 545-0053

PIANO PERFORMANCE (Suggested repertoire; appropriate substitutions are accepted):

  1. Bach (i.e. French or English Suite, Partita, Toccata, Italian Concerto or Prelude & Fugue with a four-part Fugue) OR a complete Classical Sonata by Haydn, Mozart or Beethoven
  2. A representative Romantic work by Chopin, Schubert, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Liszt or Rachmaninoff
  3. A representative work from the Twentieth Century or Contemporary work by Debussy, Ravel, Faure, Scriabin, Prokovieff, Shostakovich, Bartok, Stravinsky, Ligeti, Copland or Ginastera

COLLABORATIVE PIANO (Suggested repertoire)

  1. A movement from a Sonata, Piano Trio, Quartet or Quintet
  2. One or two songs from the French Art Song repertoire
  3. Two songs from the German Lied repertoire (i.e. Schubert, Schumann, Brahms & Strauss)
  4. One technically difficult Opera Aria or piece from the Oratorio literature

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Graduate Percussion

Professor Ayano Kataoka, ayano@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-3258

Please prepare music for ALL of the instruments listed below.

Mallets:

  1. A major solo work for marimba or vibraphone AND
  2. Two xylophone orchestral excerpts

Snare Drum:

  1. One concert solo or etude AND
  2. Orchestral excerpt: Rimsky-Korsakov Scheherazade

Timpani:

  1. One solo or etude AND
  2. Orchestral excerpts: Beethoven Symphony No. 7 and 9
Others:

Any style of music that represents you well as a musician (e.g. multiple percussion solo, chamber music, world music styles such as hand drum, etc.)

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Jazz Composition & Arranging Masters Program

Professor Jeffrey W. Holmes, (Trumpet, piano, conductor), jwholmes@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-6046

There is no Graduate Jazz PERFORMANCE degree. While the portfolio is the primary focal point of the Jazz Composition/Arranging application and subsequent Master's degree, a sample CD or live audition of the applicant's performing abilities is encouraged, as is the participation in large and small jazz ensembles while pursuing the Master's degree. A particular performing strength can sometimes compensate for a smaller writing portfolio as an initial foray into the Master's in Jazz Composition/Arranging.

AUDITION REQUIREMENTS: JAZZ COMPOSITION AND ARRANGING MASTERS PROGRAM

Writing:
Submit a portfolio of at least 4 selections that are varied in style and/or instrumentation in the Jazz and Contemporary music genres. Please provide scores and/or lead sheets with an accompanying CD, and identify your playing on the CD as well if applicable. It is recognized that writing backgrounds vary.

Performing:
A playing audition is not required for the writing program. However, if an applicant would like the opportunity, then an audition can be scheduled, preferably on the Department's audition dates, or by arrangement with Professor Holmes. A CD is acceptable as well (see writing criteria above).

Insight into an applicant's playing aptitude can help foresee participation in ensembles and potential TA duties.

Further questions can be addressed to Professor Jeffrey W. Holmes Director, Jazz & African-American Music Studies, jwholmes@music.umass.edu

Please refer to the Undergraduate Jazz Audition Requirements for your instrument.

Ensemble auditions are always required for placement in Departmental ensembles. Graduate jazz applicants should contact Program Director & Professor Jeffrey W. Holmes, jwholmes@music.umass.edu, (413) 545-6046, for additional details about the program and audition information.

 

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