Strings

String audition requirements

In response to the ongoing pandemic, the Jacobs School of Music Office of Admissions and Financial Aid is adapting our audition procedures for 2021-2022 admissions to meet state and university guidelines related to COVID-19.


In lieu of in-person auditions, all strings applicants should submit a recorded video audition.

Recorded video audition required for all applicants.

(There is no prescreen requirement.)

All pieces must be presented from memory. The only exceptions to this are orchestral excerpts for P.D.O.S. applicants, and chamber repertoire for P.D.C.M. applicants.


Undergraduate applicants
Bachelor of Music (B.M.), Bachelor of Music Education (B.M.E), Bachelor of Science in Music and an Outside Field (B.S.O.F.)
  • The first movement of a standard major concerto with cadenza (if it has one) or the second and third movements
  • Two contrasting movements of an unaccompanied partita or sonata by J. S. Bach
Graduate and diploma applicants
Master of Music (M.M.), Performer Diploma-Solo Performance (P.D.S.P.), Artist Diploma (A.D.), Doctor of Music (D.M.)
  • Two contrasting movements from a Bach solo sonata or partita
  • First movement, or the most representative movement of a major concerto
  • A Paganini caprice or some other type of virtuoso display piece
Performer Diploma-Orchestral Studies (P.D.O.S.)
  • First movement exposition of one of the following violin concerti: Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Sibelius, Mendelssohn, Bartok No. 2
  • First movement exposition of one of the Mozart Violin Concerti
  • Orchestral excerpts (may be performed with or without music): Strauss - Don Juan (beginning to 3 bars before letter D); Mendelssohn - A Midsummer Night's Dream: Scherzo (beginning to 15 bars after letter F); Brahms - Symphony No. 4, Mvt. 4, Allegro energico e passionate (9 bars after letter A to letter D)

Recorded video audition required for all applicants.

(There is no prescreen requirement.)


Undergraduate applicants

Bachelor of Music (B.M.), Bachelor of Music Education (B.M.E), Bachelor of Science in Music and an Outside Field (B.S.O.F.)

  • First-year applicants: Two contrasting pieces
  • Transfer applicants: Two movements of a solo Bach work and a solo of your choice

Graduate and diploma applicants

Master of Music (M.M.), Performer Diploma-Solo Performance (P.D.S.P.), Doctor of Music (D.M.)

  • Excerpts from a recital program, including no fewer than three contrasting works
  • For doctoral applicants, the repertoire for the live audition may be the same as the repertoire from the prescreen but is not required to be the same.

Performer Diploma-Orchestral Studies (P.D.O.S)

  • First movement of one of the following concertos: Walton, Bartok, Hindemith: Der Schwanendreher
  • First movement of a Classical concerto
  • Three contrasting standard orchestral excerpts of your choice

Recorded video audition required for all applicants.

(There is no prescreen requirement.)


Undergraduate applicants

Bachelor of Music (B.M.), Bachelor of Music Education (B.M.E), Bachelor of Science in Music and an Outside Field (B.S.O.F.)

  • First-year applicants: Two contrasting movements from two different pieces
  • Transfer applicants: Two movements of a solo Bach work and a solo of their choice

Graduate and diploma applicants

Master of Music (M.M.), Performer Diploma-Solo Performance (P.D.S.P.), Doctor of Music (D.M.)

  • Two contrasting movements from a Bach solo suite
  • First movement, or the most representative movement of a major concerto (excluding the 1st movement of the Shostakovich Concert #1)
  • A solo piece of your choice

Performer Diploma-Orchestral Studies (P.D.O.S.)

  • First movement of either the Schumann or Dvorak Concerto
  • First movement of the Haydn D Major Concerto
  • First page of Strauss - Don Juan
  • Two contrasting excerpts selected from the following: Beethoven - Symphony No. 5, Mvt. 2 and 3; Beethoven - Symphony No. 8, Mvt. 3 (Trio); Mendelssohn - A Midsummer Night's Dream, Scherzo; Brahms - Symphony No. 2, Mvt. 2; Verdi - Requiem, No. 3 Offertorium

Recorded video audition required for all applicants.

(There is no prescreen requirement.)


Bachelor of Music (B.M.), Bachelor of Music Education (B.M.E), Bachelor of Science in Music and an Outside Field (B.S.O.F.), Master of Music (M.M.), Performer Diploma-Solo Performance (P.D.S.P.)

  • Two works from the standard solo literature, contrasting in both tempo and style
  • Two (undergraduate applicants) or three (graduate applicants) excerpts representing different composers, selected from the following list:
    • Mozart: 1st or 4th movements of Symphony No. 35, 39, or 40
    • Beethoven: Symphony No. 3, Mvt. 3 (Scherzo); Symphony No. 5, Mvt. 3 (Scherzo and Trio); Symphony No. 9, Mvt. 4 (letter K (mm. 431-525) and/or letter M (mm. 541-594))
    • Brahms: 1st or 4th movements of Symphony No. 1 or 2
    • Strauss: Ein Heldenleben; Don Juan
  • Graduate applicants only: A movement from a major concerto

Performer Diploma-Orchestral Studies (P.D.O.S.)

  • One movement from the Bach Cello Suites
  • One work from the standard solo literature that is contrasting in tempo and style
  • One orchestral solo chosen from the following: Stravinsky - Pulcinella Suite; Ginastera - Variations Concertantes; Verdi - Otello, Act III solo; Haydn: Symphony No. 31 solo
  • Four standard orchestral excerpts representing four different composers, selected from the following:
    • Mozart: 1st or 4th movements of Symphony No. 35, 39, or 40
    • Beethoven: Symphony No. 3, Mvt. 3 (Scherzo); Symphony No. 5, Mvt. 3 (Scherzo and Trio); Symphony No. 9, Mvt. 4 (letter K (mm. 431-525) and/or letter M (mm. 541-594))
    • Brahms: 1st or 4th movements of Symphony No. 1 or 2
    • Strauss: Ein Heldenleben; Don Juan

Doctor of Music (D.M.)

  • One complete sonata
  • One complete standard concerto
  • Two works from the standard solo literature (at least one work should be performed from memory)

Recorded video audition required for all applicants.

(There is no prescreen requirement.)


Performer Diploma-Chamber Music (P.D.C.M.)

The P.D.C.M. is for established string quartets. Pre-formed groups should prepare:

  • Two complete contrasting string quartets

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