Admission Into Music Programs

At Cornerstone University, a music audition is required if you plan to major in one of our music degree programs. New music majors are encouraged to attend Music Major Day on Friday, Feb. 7, 2020, which will include your audition for acceptance into the music program and determine your scholarship eligibility.

If you are unable to attend the Music Major Day, your live audition for admission to the music program will occur during your jury exam in December of your first semester.

Music Scholarship Opportunities

We offer music scholarships for majors and non-majors. Music majors able to attend Music Major Day, please use the application to apply for a music scholarship and to schedule a time for your audition into the music program. Non-music majors and music majors unable to attend Music Major Day will complete the same application, but will have the additional opportunity to submit a video audition within the form.

Music scholarship applications are now closed for the 2020 academic year.

Program and Scholarship Audition Requirements

As you prepare for your live music audition or video scholarship audition, select your instrument to review audition guidelines for your desired area of study. If you intend to minor in music, you are not required to complete the audition process.

Guitar Audition Guidelines

For a guitar audition, prepare select repertoire and scales that demonstrate your musicianship and technique. Applicants for a guitar scholarship must:

  • Perform three memorized pieces of contrasting style from any of the following collections:
    • "Twenty Studies for the Guitar" by Fernando Sor and Andres Segovia (arr.).
    • "25 Etudes Op. 60 for the Classical Guitar" by Mateo Carcassi.
    • "Etudes Simples (Estudios Sencillos) for Guitar" by Leo Brouwer.
    • "Classical Guitar Repertoire and Etudes Level 3" by The Royal Conservatory (Bridges).
  • Perform by memory any selected two or three octave major, harmonic minor and melodic minor scales. Available resources include:
    • "Diatonic Major and Minor Scales" by Andres Segovia.
    • "Guitar Technique" by The Royal Conservatory (Bridges).
    • "The Virtuoso Guitarist Method for Guitar, Volume 1" by Matt Palmer.
  • Play at sight an exercise that is of the equivalent level as outlined in "Preparatory Guitar Repertoire and Studies" by The Royal Conservatory (Bridges).

Percussion Audition Guidelines

For a percussion audition, prepare two works that demonstrate your technique and musicianship. Choose two excerpts, etudes or solo works in contrasting styles on any of the following instruments:

  • Snare drum (rudimental or concert).
  • Timpani.
  • Marimba.
  • Vibraphone.
  • Xylophone.

While the excerpts you choose may be performed on the same instrument, the demonstration of your abilities on two instruments is highly encouraged. Major and melodic minor scale demonstration highly recommended. The length of your selections should not exceed more than 10 minutes total.

Piano Audition Guidelines

For a piano audition, prepare a total of three songs, selecting one song from each of the following categories:

  • A selection from the Baroque era, such as a three-part invention, suite, sinfonia or a prelude and fugue from "The Well-Tempered Clavier" by J.S. Bach. Or, you may select a work by another comparable Baroque composer such as Scarlatti or Handel.
  • A selection from the Classical era, such as a fast movement from a sonata by Haydn, Clementi, Hummel, Mozart or Beethoven.
  • A selection from the Romantic, Impressionistic or Twentieth Century by a composer such as Chopin, Brahms, Ravel, Debussy, Prokofiev, Bartok, Ginastera, Copland or Gershwin.

Pieces should demonstrate your interpretative ability, technique, musicianship and sight-reading proficiency. Memorization is expected, and the length of your selections should not exceed more than 10 minutes total. Be prepared to demonstrate major and minor scales.

Vocal Audition Guidelines

For a vocal audition, prepare two songs in contrasting styles. Choose one song from each of the following categories:

  • Art song, operatic or oratorio aria (English or a foreign language).
  • Music theatre, sacred, popular or jazz.

Songs should demonstrate interpretive ability, vocal technique, musicianship, sight-reading proficiency and pitch matching. Memorization of the music is expected, and solo and ensemble competition pieces are acceptable. An accompanist will be provided if needed.

Wind Instrument Audition Guidelines

For a wind instrument audition, prepare a full-range chromatic scale and two contrasting selections from these categories:

  • A movement from a sonata, concerto or comparable composition.
  • A solo piece that is appropriate for high school solo and ensemble festival.
  • A standard solo etude.

The selections should demonstrate your musicality, tone and technique. They should not exceed more than 10 minutes total. Be prepared to demonstration major and melodic minor scales.

Cornerstone accepts these woodwind and brass instruments: flute, oboe, bassoon, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone, French horn, trumpet, trombone, baritone and tuba.