Music Audition Requirements

Choose your instrument

Classical piano | Percussion | Wind instruments | Voice (undergraduate) | Voice (graduate) | Strings | Classical Guitar | Jazz | Drum Set | Music Industry Studies (non-performance track)

Classical piano

  • 2-4 works in contrasting styles from the Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and/or Twentieth Century repertoire, memorized
  • Total length of all: no more than 15 minutes
  • Sight reading proficiency will also be tested
  • A resume listing all repertoires studied and performances given in the three years prior to the audition


  • Demonstrated abilities on snare drum, mallets and timpani (one selection is sufficient – solos or etudes)
  • Set drum skills can also be demonstrated
  • Sight reading proficiency may be tested

Wind instruments

  • 2 selections of contrasting styles (technical and lyrical-slow)
  • Sight reading proficiency and major and minor scales may be tested

Voice (undergraduate applicants)

  • Singers auditioning for admission to the undergraduate/graduate program should come with three classical songs or arias in different styles. For example, Italian songs from the 24 Italian Song collection and songs by Purcell, Handel, Copland, or Vaughan Williams are frequently sung at auditions and would be good choices.
  • Songs must be performed from memory.
  • You will choose your first selection, and you will be asked for a second piece by those listening. One of the songs may be a musical theater selection if you feel that it shows your voice well.
  • Dress appropriately for the stage.
  • Loyola provides an accompanist for these auditions. Make sure to have readable printed music for your songs in the key in which you plan to sing. Sing things that you enjoy singing and that show your vocal and interpretive strengths. Be prepared to introduce yourself and to announce your selections before singing them.
  • The audition committee may converse with you following your audition and answer your questions if there is time.

Voice (graduate applicants)

  • Singers auditioning for graduate admission should bring three contrasting selections. These pieces should demonstrate the applicant’s readiness to study advanced repertoire. Include an aria from an opera or oratorio performed in the original language; an art song in French, German, or Italian, and an additional song sung in your language of choice. We recommend that each selection be chosen from a different style period.
  • Songs must be performed from memory.


  • 2 contrasting pieces from the standard repertoire for your instrument; performed unaccompanied
  • Total length of all: no more than 10 minutes
  • Sight reading proficiency and scales may also be tested
  • One major and one minor scale of your choice, 3 octaves preferred

Classical Guitar

  • Two classical works in contrasting styles - memorized

Jazz (see specific instruments below)

  • 2 jazz or standard songs, one a medium-to-fast tempo tune in a swing style (blues or standard melody plus improvisation), the second a slow ballad that demonstrates jazz interpretation
  • Accompaniment by prerecorded CD or tape (provided by student) or with faculty jazz pianist
  • Ability in classical styles can be demonstrated at this time

Jazz guitar

  • Recommended that the ballad selection be played in a chord melody style
  • Be able to demonstrate your improvisation skills on the faster selection, in addition to the melody and improvisation
  • Amplifiers will be provided, if needed

Jazz Bass

  • Demonstrated improvisation skills on the faster selection, in addition to the melody and improvisation
  • Amplifiers will be provided, if needed

Jazz Piano

  • Usually the pianist performs in a solo jazz context
  • Demonstrated improvisation skills on the faster selection, in addition to the melody and improvisation

Drum Set

  • Demonstrated various styles on drum set
  • Several tempos in swing style will be evaluated, with the candidate alternating 4 measures of accompaniment and 4 measures of solo. Other styles suggested are ¾ swing, Afro-Cuban, Samba, Bossa Nova, Rock, and Funk. Bring sticks and cymbals; also brushes and mallets if needed.
  • Set drummers are also encouraged to demonstrate their versatility by performing one or more of the following; a rudimentary snare drum etude, a marimba or xylophone etude (or scales), and a timpani solo or band excerpt.

Music Industry Studies Non-Performance Track

Music Industry Studies performance track students follow the audition guidelines above based on their instrument.