Admission and Auditions

Admissions requirements include the standard undergraduate admissions process for the university, and a live audition for the School of Music. To be fully admitted into the School of Music, prospective students must:

  • Be admitted to Western Carolina University. Note: admission to the University does not guarantee admission to the School of Music.
  • Apply to the School of Music through our Online Application (be sure to click "submit" when you are finished filling it out!).
  • Complete a satisfactory live audition for the music faculty. Audition requirements are listed below.
  • Submit a letter of reference concerning your prospect for professional study.
  • Complete the Music Aptitude/Placement Exam on the audition day or during the first week of classes.


Audition Dates for the 2017-2018 Academic Year

  • Saturday, January 28, 2017
  • Saturday, February 18, 2017

Prospective students should make every effort to audition on one of these days. In special circumstances, other dates may be arranged by contacting the School Office at 828-227-7242. Many of the studios will be filled after the February audition date, so later auditions may be considered only for entry in subsequent semesters.

Audition Guidelines for Students

WINDS, BRASS, AND STRINGS

1. Play a prepared solo (accompaniment not required).
2. Play scales (as many as possible).

3. Sight read.

PERCUSSION

1. Audition on snare, tympani, and marimba (Bring your own mallets and a drum pad for your warm-up.)

2. Demonstrate rudiments

3. Sight read. 
4. Download the Audition Requirements for Percussionists (PDF)

KEYBOARD INSTRUMENTS

1. Play two prepared solos, contrasting in style. 
2. Play scales. 
3. Sight read.

VOICE

1. Sing two prepared solos from memory. (An accompanist will be provided, or you may bring your own.)

2. Demonstrate vocal range.

3. Sight read

JAZZ & BASS GUITAR

1. Play prepared solo.

2. Play scales, chords, demonstrate improvisational skills, and sight read. 
3. Download the Audition Requirements for Jazz Guitar (PDF)

COMMERCIAL AND ELECTRONIC MUSIC

  • For Jazz Studies, contact Pavel Wlosok: 828-227-3261.
  • For MultiMedia, Recording Arts, or Music Synthesis, contact Dr. Bruce Frazier: 828-227-2400.

Music Aptitude/Placement Exam

The Music Aptitude/Placement Exam is designed to assess your knowledge of the basic language of music. It will be used to place you into music theory courses appropriate to your skill level, but will have no effect on your acceptance into the School of Music. If you have transfer credit or advanced placement in music theory, you may be placed into more advanced theory courses upon demonstration of advanced competence. Topics assessed in the Music Aptitude/Placement Test include:

  • Clef reading
  • Key Signatures
  • Intervals and Triad Quality
  • Scales and Modes
  • Instrumental Transposition
  • Meters and Rhythmic Notation
  • Popular Chord Symbols
  • Simple 4-part writing
  • Harmonic Analysis 
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