Audition Guidelines

All the audition guidelines for each instrument can be found in the cooresponding drop-down menu.

Bassoon

  • Three-octave B♭ chromatic scale from low B♭ to the highest B♭, slurred up & down
  • Two-octave major & minor scales--up to four flats/sharps; some articulated
  • Two contrasting styles of music from the traditional bassoon repertoire. (One to demonstrate your technical facility and the other for lyrical expression)
  • Sight-reading should also be expected

 

Cello

  • One movement from the standard concerto repertoire
  • One movement of unaccompanied Bach
  • One etude
  • Four-octave major scale and its parallel minor and arpeggios
  • Sight reading may be requested

 

Clarinet

  • Two pieces in contrasting styles, selected from the standard concerto, sonata, or solo repertoire
  • One etude chosen from the Rose 40 or 32 Studies
  • All major and minor scales and a chromatic scale
  • Sight reading may be requested

 

Composition

Students must complete a classical audition on their primary instruments in addition to submitting a composition portfolio, in hard copy, which includes the following:

  • Three musical scores (recordings of the submitted works are highly recommended, but not required)
  • A statement of your compositional interests and goals
  • A list of compositions that includes completion dates and a list of public performances or readings
  • Completed portfolios must be received by January 15

 

Double bass

  • Two contrasting pieces or movements from the standard repertoire (Including a movement from a Baroque sonata or suite)
  • Orchestral excerpts
  • Three-octave major scale, its relative melodic minor, and arpeggios
  • Sight reading may be requested

In addition, students may elect to perform a transcribed jazz solo or improvise with pre-recorded accompaniment

 

Euphonium

  • Two or three compositions, etudes or band/orchestral excerpts that demonstrate contrasting styles and the ability to play melodic and technical material
  • All scales; major, minor (natural, harmonic and melodic), and two octave chromatic scales
  • Some sight reading may be required

 

Flute

  • Three pieces of contrasting styles, which may include movements from concerti, sonatas and solo repertoire
  • All two-octave major and minor scales
  • Three-octave chromatic scale
  • Sight reading may be requested

 

Guitar

  • An etude by Sor, Carcassi, Brouwer or Villa-Lobos
  • One movement of Bach
  • One piece from standard classical guitar literature (may be a movement from a larger work)
  • Three-octave major scale and its parallel minor
  • Three selections from the Giuliani 120 Studies for the Right Hand
  • Sight-reading may be requested

For students interested in jazz or pursuing the Jazz Emphasis, please refer to the Jazz Audition Guidelines

 

Harpsichord

  • Three pieces from the standard harpsichord repertoire (including one by J.S. Bach)
  • Sight reading may be requested

 

Horn

  • First movement of any Mozart Concerto
  • Two contrasting pieces that demonstrate technical facility and melodic expression, one drawn from the standard concerto, sonata, or solo repertoire (e.g. Strauss, Hindemith, Saint-Saens, Gliere) the other an etude (e.g. Gallay, Kling, Kopprasch, Maxime-Alphonse) or orchestral excerpt
  • Major, minor and chromatic scales in two octaves
  • Sight reading, including transposition (in E-flat or D major) and bass clef, may be requested

 

Jazz (instrumental)

Students interested in demonstrating their jazz talents must perform a complete classical audition on their primary instrument in addition to a separate jazz audition (see below)

  • For on campus auditions
    • See primary instrument audition requirements for classical audition
    • Candidates auditioning on the Lawrence campus are required to attend the “Jazz Jam” scheduled from noon to 1:00 pm
      • Candidates will perform the melody and improvise several solo choruses on any one of the following works: Tenor Madness (Sonny Rollins), Mr. P.C. (John Coltrane), or Lester Leaps In (Lester Young).
      • Candidates will be accompanied by a Lawrence student rhythm section and memorization is preferred.
  • For regional or self-recorded video auditions
    • See primary instrument audition requirements for classical audition
    • The jazz audition must include a jazz etude, solo transcription, or improvisation on a prepared jazz piece selected by the student
    • Interested Jazz Students must also improvise to a pre-recorded CD accompaniment (such as the Jamey Aebersold Play-Along series) and provide their own amplification for playback for regional auditions (iPod docking station, portable stereo, etc)

 

Oboe

  • An 18th-century, or earlier, concerto
  • A second piece in contrasting style, such as another solo work, an etude, or an orchestral excerpt
  • Number 25 in d minor from Forty Progressive Melodies, Barret Oboe Method (also found on pg. 32 of the Vade-Mecum of the Oboist, ed. Andraud)
  • Major and minor scales
  • Some sight reading may be required

 

Organ

Organ auditions will be offered at Interlochen and on campus.

  • Three pieces from the standard organ literature
    • One piece should be chosen from the works of J.S. Bach, i.e. a prelude, toccata or fantasy and fugue, chorale prelude or a trio sonata movement
    • Two contrasting works selected from the 19th and 20th century
    • Repertoire to be performed should demonstrate the applicant's technical skills and musical abilities
  • Sight-read a standard four-part hymn as well as an easy piece of organ music

 

Percussion

Percussion auditions will be offered in Interlochen, Houston, and on campus

  • Students should be able to perform an etude that demonstrates their level of musical and technical ability on snare drum (rudimental or concert style), keyboard percussion (marimba, vibraphone or xylophone), and timpani (two or four drums)
  • Students are also encouraged to perform a solo or a variety of styles on drum set (rock, jazz, Brazilian, Cuban) and/or any ethnic instrument such as congas, tabla, frame drum, etc
  • Students will be asked to sight-read and play scales on marimba

Students may contact Dane Richeson or visit the percussion studio website for repertoire examples

 

Piano

All music must be memorized

  • A Prelude and Fugue or other Bach composition containing a fugue (such as a Toccata or Partita)
  • A sonata-allegro movement of a sonata by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, or Schubert
  • A composition from the romantic period
  • A 20th or 21st-century composition
  • Students may also be asked to sight-read
  • In the case of a student with a prospective jazz emphasis, the 20th/21st century composition may be a jazz etude, transcription, or improvisation on a prepared jazz piece.

Due to time limitations, it is possible that not all selections will be heard at the audition, but all should be prepared

 

Saxophone

  • Two or three pieces or movements in contrasting styles, demonstrating technical facility and melodic expressiveness
  • All major and minor scales (harmonic or melodic), played both ascending and descending through the full range of the instrument.
  • A chromatic scale (Bb-F#3, ascending and descending)
  • Some sight reading may be required
  • In addition, students may elect to perform a transcribed jazz solo or improvise with pre-recorded accompaniment

On-campus auditions take the form of a private lesson.  Students auditioning on campus begin the audition with a performance of their prepared repertoire and scales; the audition continues with a lesson of 30 to 40 minutes duration that includes work on the prepared repertoire and sight-reading.

 

Trombone

Tenor Trombone and Bass Trombone

  • Two or three standard solos or etudes that show both melodic interpretation and technical facility
  • Major and minor scales
  • Sight-reading and simple tunes by ear as requested
  • Jazz etudes, transcriptions, or improvisation with pre-recorded accompaniment may be used as a portion of the audition

For students interested in the Jazz Emphasis, please refer to the Jazz Audition Guidelines

 

Trumpet

  • A variety of solos or etudes displaying both technical and melodic ability
  • Major, minor, and chromatic scales
  • Sight-reading may be requested
  • Jazz improvisation with pre-recorded accompaniment and/or lead playing can be included at the discretion of the applicant

 

Tuba

  • Two or three compositions, etudes, or band/orchestral excerpts that demonstrate contrasting styles and the ability to play melodic and technical material
  • All scales; major, minor (natural, harmonic and melodic)
  • Two octave chromatic scales
  • Some sight reading may be required

 

Viola

Preferably, repertoire will be performed from memory

  • One movement of a standard concerto or other work for solo viola and orchestra
  • Two contrasting movements of solo Bach
  • An etude or caprice by Campagnoli, Fuchs or Kreutzer
  • Three octave major scale and its parallel minor scale and arpeggios
  • Sight-reading may be requested

 

Violin

  • Either the first or third movement of a standard concerto performed from memory
  • Two contrasting movements of unaccompanied Bach
  • An etude or caprice
  • Three-octave scales and arpeggios
  • Sight-reading may be requested

 

Voice

Pieces must be sung from memory

  • Two solos of contrasting styles
    • One of which must be sung in English, while the other can be sung in a foreign language or English
  • A musical skills test that includes pitch-matching, sight-singing, and rhythmic exercises will follow the audition.

An accompanist will be provided on campus; students auditioning at a regional site must provide their own accompanists

 

Your Musical Interest

Interested in the Lawrence Conservatory? Want to hear more about it? Do you want the Lawrence Conservatory to hear more about you?

Fill out our Music Interest Form:

Music Interest Form

Lawrence University does not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, sexual orientation, parental or marital status, age, or disability. Inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policy may be directed to the Provost and Dean of the Faculty at 920-832-6528. Lawrence adheres to the Statement of Principles of Good Practice of the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC).

Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube LarryU