Music Admissions

The music program requires a short personal essay, two letters of recommendation, and a live audition as part of the music admission process. The essay and letters of recommendation required for the music program are separate from the university admission process.

All Virginia residents are required to audition in person at Virginia Tech on one of the dates indicated. If you live in state and are unable to attend one of the audition dates listed, you may request permission to submit a pre-recorded DVD video recording by contacting Michele Klawitter and the audition committee will consider your request. If you live out of state and are unable to attend one of the audition dates listed, you may submit a pre-recorded DVD video recording without the requirement of committee approval. Please contact Michele Klawitter to obtain further instructions on how to submit your out of state DVD video recording.

Audition/Interview Dates for Prospective 2016-2017 Music Majors:

  • Monday, November 9, 2015 (all instruments and voice)
  • Thursday, January 21, 2016 (Honor Band participants only)
  • Friday, January 22, 2016 (Honor Band participants only)
  • Thursday, January 28, 2016 (Honor Choir participants only)
  • Saturday, February 6, 2016 (piano, voice, and strings only)
  • Monday, February 15, 2016 (all instruments and voice)

Only auditions that take place before March 1 will be considered for scholarships. Please submit your supplemental application as soon as possible to ensure your preferred audition date.

Requesting an Audition

All prospective freshmen and transfer music major students must complete the following steps:

  • Complete an application to Virginia Tech by January 15 (February 15 for transfers)
  • Complete and submit the Music Admissions form.
  • Two letters of recommendation should be mailed at least two weeks prior to your requested audition date via email to Michele Klawitter.
  • Additionally, please submit a brief essay describing your involvement in music as well as your objectives and professional aspirations via email to Michele Klawitter. There is no required length for the essay.
  • Composition Majors: If you are choosing composition as your option, please send a portfolio of your most recent compositions to Michele Klawitter.

You may also mail the forms to:

Music Admissions
School of Performing Arts (0141)
195 Alumni Mall
Henderson Hall, Room 245
Blacksburg, VA 24061

ALL FORMS (either mailed or on-line) MUST BE RECEIVED TWO WEEKS BEFORE THE DESIRED AUDITION DATE.

Once your audition request is processed, you will receive an email with your time and instructions 1-2 weeks prior to your audition date.

We recommend that you also search the Virginia Tech Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid for additional scholarship and financial aid information.

Audition Requirements

All candidates: please choose your audition repertoire carefully, following the guidelines listed below.  Each audition will take 12-15 minutes. Faculty may request scales and/or sight-reading as part of the audition.

  • Woodwind and Brass players should prepare movements of sonatas, concertos, or other solo concert pieces, and may include an etude as part of their audition program. 
     
  • Pianists should prepare at least two works chosen from each of the following options below:
    1. Baroque OR Classical
    2. Romantic OR later
    If more than two works are offered, they may be chosen from the remaining two options. 
     
  • Vocalists are required to prepare three pieces - at least one selection should be in Italian, French, or German, and one in English. These two compositions must be classical art songs or arias in contrasting styles. The third selection may be from a Broadway musical, or can be another classical work. Please Note: Students are encouraged to bring their own accompanists if possible, but the Music Program will probably be able to arrange for an accompanist at no charge for singers only if the candidate notifies us and sends his or her music to us at least ten days ahead of the desired audition date.
     
  • Percussionists should include musical selections from each of the three primary percussion instruments: snare drum (rudiments, a concert etude, and a rudimental etude), mallet instruments (scales, arpeggios, a 2-mallet etude or solo and a 4-mallet solo), and timpani. Though not required, the applicant may also choose to audition additionally on drum set. Please see the Recommended Percussion Repertoire for repertoire suggestions in each of these areas. 
  •  String players should prepare at least two contrasting works, one of which should be a movement from a solo suite of Johann Sebastian Bach.  Bassist can substitute another Baroque work for the Bach.  In addition, an etude may be added if the applicant feels it will help their audition.  

  • Composers should submit at least three original compositions, along with scores, recordings, software, videos, or other media that will best enable an assessment of the work. The compositions need not be long, but they should be varied enough to demonstrate aptitude for this major. Applicants in composition will have an interview in addition to auditioning on their major instrument.

If you have any questions or would like to request a printed informational packet be mailed to you, please contact Michele Klawitter.

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