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Jazz Studies Auditions

A. Performance of a prepared jazz etude, transcription or substantial big band chart (not preferred, but accepted) of the student’s that is a minimum of 50 measures in length. The prepared piece may be in a style of the student’s choosing, and must be played in one single continuous performance.  If a transcription is chosen for this portion of the audition, the student is required to perform the transcription along with the original recording. 

B. Perform the full melody and improvise over 2-4 choruses (60 measures of improvisation minimum) of two jazz standards of contrasting styles. No more than one of these two standards may be a 12 or 16 bar blues. This portion of the audition should be completed with the use of a backing track (i.e. Aebersold play-along, Band in a box, IRealB, etc.). Memorization of these pieces are not a firm requirement, but highly encouraged. These should be played in one single continuous performance. Click here for a List of possible jazz standards deemed appropriate for an undergraduate audition>>

C. Performance of both major and natural minor scales (2 octaves whenever possible) in all 12 keys in 8th notes at 120bpm.

D. Two years of classical applied study on the student’s instrument of specialty (via lower-level applied lessons) is a required component of the jazz BM and BA degrees. As a result, prospective jazz students should ALSO plan to prepare audition material for the related classical studio faculty member on their respective instrument (saxophone excepted). Please contact the jazz studies area head or your instrument’s classical studio faculty member directly to inquire about specific classical repertoire requirements.

*Remember that you will need to contact the applied classical faculty for your instrument of specialty to inquire about their audition requirements as well.

Jazz drum set auditions will differ significantly from what is listed above. Please contact professor James Dreier for specific details.

Jazz guitar auditions will differ from what is required above. Please contact professor Steve Grismore for details. 

All other questions regarding Jazz Studies, please contact Dr. Damani Phillips