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Audition

To schedule an audition, please use our Online Registration Form (below) or contact us.

AUDITION ONLINE REGISTRATION FORM

After submitting the completed form, you will be contacted with a confirmation of your audition date.  Audition days begin at 9:00 AM and run through the afternoon. You will receive specific audition information and a detailed schedule at least two weeks prior to your audition date.

2018 – 2019 AUDITION DATES

  • November 10, 2018
  • February 9, 2019
  • March 16, 2019
  • April 13, 2019 (WLU Open House)

WHY DO WE AUDITION STUDENTS?

In addition to meeting the regular university entrance requirements, students desiring to major in music must demonstrate musical ability by auditioning before the Department of Music faculty. Prospective students should prepare audition materials according to the guidelines below. If you would like assistance choosing music audition materials, or have questions about the audition process, please do not hesitate to contact your area coordinator, as noted below.

Prof. Ryan Keeling (voice): [email protected]

Dr. Gerald Lee (piano): [email protected]

Dr. Gretchen Pohlman (winds and percussion): [email protected]

The audition is more than just a musical performance evaluation. The faculty also want to know your level of commitment to success! Therefore, the faculty will ask you about your prior experience in music and your career goals during the audition.

SCHOLARSHIPS

Your audition may result in being awarded a College of Arts and Communication Scholarship in the form of tuition remission and/or a housing waiver. Scholarships are awarded based on your potential for success in our program, which includes elements of your performance as well as the “interview” with the faculty. Amounts vary widely and can be based on the current needs of the program, available scholarship money, and/or student needs. More information about scholarships is available here: https://westliberty.edu/music/scholarships/

If you have any questions, please call 304-336-8006 or contact your area coordinator.

For Accompanied Auditions:

Students are strongly encouraged to bring their own accompanists; however, if needed, one may be provided for you. Arrangements must be made with the Department (send email to [email protected] or contact an appropriate faculty member) and sheet music must be mailed no less than two weeks prior to auditions.

Music Audition Requirements:

Read below for specific audition requirements according to your applied area.

VOICE

Prospective students in voice should be prepared to sing two or three songs from the standard vocal repertoire for their vocal audition. Songs of contrasting mood, tempo, and language are recommended. One of the songs may be from the musical theater repertoire. It is recommended, but not required, that students bring their own accompanists whenever possible. It is also recommended that students sing as many of their audition songs as possible from memory.

Criteria for acceptance as a music major in voice include the following:

1. An easily produced vocal tone of adequate size and pleasing quality.

2. Good vocal musicianship, as demonstrated by the ability to sing with good pitch and rhythmic accuracy, and to sing legato phrases in which dynamics are meaningfully employed.

3. Expressiveness, as demonstrated by the communication to the listener of the emotional content of the song being sung.

Recommended Literature:

TRADITIONAL ART SONG

  • An aria in Italian from 26 Italian Art Songs and Arias, edited Paton.
  • An art song or aria from The First Book series (individual books are by voice part), edited Boytim.

20TH CENTURY ART SONG

  • 15 American Art Songs, compiled Arvin.
  • 20th Century Art Songs or Fundamentals in Singing, edited Paton.

THEATER SONGS from any beginning theater songbook collection

  • The Singers’ Musical Theater Anthology or Music Theater Classics.

PIANO

1. Prepare two compositions of contrasting styles, preferably from memory.

Examples of Suggested Repertoire:

  • J. S. Bach – Two or Three-part Inventions
  • D. Scarlatti – keyboard sonatas
  • One or more movements taken from a Classical keyboard sonata by such composers as Franz J. Haydn, W. A. Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven, Muzio Clementi, etc.
  • F. Schubert – Impromptus, Moments Musicaux
  • F. Chopin – Preludes, Nocturnes, Waltzes
  • F. Mendelssohn – Songs Without Words
  • J. Brahms – Waltzes, Intermezzi, etc.
  • C. Debussy – Children’s Corner Suite, Suite Bergamasque, etc.
  • S. Prokofieff – Visions Fugitives
  • B. Bartok – Mikrokosmos

PIPE ORGAN

1. Perform a composition from the Baroque Era, preferably by Johann Sebastian Bach, such as a chorale prelude from the Orgelbüchlein, or one of the preludes and fugues.

2. Perform either:

  • a composition selected from the French romantic repertoire, OR
  • a composition from the 20th-century repertoire

GUITAR

The audition for the guitar studio is an overall evaluation. Not all categories (below) are required. Most applicants are not equally strong in all categories; in some cases, a deficiency in one area may be mitigated by excelling in another.

1. Sight reading
Recommended Preparation: Leavitt, Wm., A Modern Method for Guitar, Berklee Series, Vol. 1 (Milwaukee: Hal Leonard Publications). pp.4-59.

2. Scales
Movable Major scale patterns, any key. Useful fingerings may be found in Berklee, Vol.1 (pp. 60, 70, 80, 90, 100); the “3 notes per string”system; or the Segovia Diatonic Major and Minor Scales (Belwin Mills Publishing Co.).

3. Chord vocabulary
Ability to play chords to a jazz tune, in tempo, from a lead sheet or jazz fakebook. Two fingerings (i.e., “shapes”) for: major 7th, dominant 7th, minor 7th, and diminished 7th chords. Knowledge of chord symbols (e.g.,”Dm7, G7,” etc) is required.

4. Improvisation
Improvisation on a blues or jazz standard of your choice. For this, play-along CDs, such as the Jamey Aebersold Jazz Aids series, are highly recommended and can be mailed to you through Volkwein’s Music (Pittsburgh: 1-800-553-8742; 412-788-5900). Recommended: “Nothin’ But Blues” or “Blues in All Keys.”

5. Solo pieces
One or two (in contrasting style) pieces for solo guitar. Pieces from the classical repertoire or jazz standards are preferred.

WOODWIND AND BRASS INSTRUMENTS

Those auditioning on woodwind and brass instruments need to prepare the following material: 

  1. Major scales through 4-flats and 4-sharps and their chromatic scale,
  2. A solo concert piece of the student’s choosing that demonstrates both technique and musicality,
  3. Two contrasting etudes selected from the following or equivalent material:

FLUTE

  • Melodious & Progressive Studies (Book 1, blue), Pub. Southern.
  • 18 Exercises, Berbiguier.

OBOE

  • 48 Famous Studies for the Oboe, W. Ferling.

BASSOON

  • 50 Bassoon Studies, Op. 8, Vol. 2, Weissenborn.

CLARINET

  • 32 Etudes, or 40 Etudes, Rose.
  • Melodious & Progressive Studies (Book 1 or 2), Hite.

SAXOPHONE

  • 48 Famous Studies, W. Ferling
  • 25 Daily Exercises for Saxophone, H. Klose (Fischer)

TRUMPET

  • Characteristic Studies – J.B. Arban
  • Lyrical Studies – G. Concone
  • 60 Selected Studies – C. Kopprasch
  • Melodious & Rhythmical Studies – J.L. Small
  • 36 Etudes Transcendantes – Theo Charlier
  • 20 Etudes Mélodiques et Techniques Trompette – L. J. Vanntelelbosch

HORN

  • Lyrical Studies – G. Concone
  • 60 Selected Studies – C. Kopprasch
  • Advanced Method, Vol. I – H. Voxman (Rubank)

LOW BRASS

  • Melodious Studies – J. Rochut
  • Advanced Method, Vol. I – H. Voxman (Rubank)
PERCUSSION
Students should demonstrate training and facility in at least two (2) of the four (4) core instrument categories:
Snare Drum (core instrument)
  1. One rudimental solo/etude from Charley Wilcoxon The All-American Drummer: 150 Rudimental Solos (full page etude toward the back of the book) or John Pratt 14 Modern Contest Solos.
  2. One concert solo/etude from Anthony Cirone Portraits in Rhythm or Mitchell Peters Intermediate Snare Drum Studies.

Mallets (core instrument)

  1. All major scales, two octaves.
  2. One numbered etude from the back of Morris Goldenberg Modern School for Xylophone, Marimba, and Vibraphone, or equivalent
  3. A 4-mallet solo is recommended but not required.

Timpani (core instrument)

  1. Demonstrate tuning ability (tune a given pitch on any drum), demonstrate tuning a P4 and P5 above and below a given note.
  2. One prepared solo/etude for 3-4 timpani from Mitchell Peters Fundamental Method for Timpani or Raynor Carroll Exercises, Etudes and Solos for the Timpani.

Drum Set (core instrument)

  1. Demonstrate the following styles with either a metronome or a play-along track (i.e. Steve Houghton Essential Styles: Book 1 or Tommy Igoe Groove Essentials):
  • Swing (“trading” 4-bar solos and time, recommended)
  • Funk/Rock
  • Bossa Nova
  • Samba

Hand Drumming / World Percussion (optional – please contact us prior to the audition)

  • Demonstrate technique and typical style patterns on congas, bongos, jembe, and/or other various ethnic percussion instruments. Candidate should contact the instructor prior to the audition to confirm instrument availability.

MARCHING HILLTOPPERS

Please visit the Marching Band page for details about joining this organization.

SCHEDULE YOUR AUDITION NOW BY CLICKING HERE!