Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesPerforming Arts · 7 years ago

Music Composition Audition Requirements?

I am in the process of applying to CMU, YSU, and Duquesne for music composition. Most schools ask for three original pieces for the audition. The three pieces I have written are all jazz lead sheets in 32 bar form, or AABA form. So the scores just have chords for the piano, a baseline, and a melody for a horn player. I'm worried that the colleges won't accept me as a composition major because I have not written any classical pieces yet, and don't have anything orchestrated for a large group. By the way, I want to learn how to write classical music, I just don't know how yet, which is why I submitted jazz pieces. So please don't tell me composition is not the right degree for me. So My questions is, does it matter that the pieces I'm submitting are just jazz lead sheets, and should I worry about not being accepted cause of this? For the sake of the question, assume the lead sheets I've written are good. AND A BEST ANSWER WILL BE CHOSEN.

2 Answers

  • 7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    As Judy said the schools probably don't expect you to be an composition genius.. The jazz sheets you wrote out should show that you have a knowledge of theory and basic composition skills. I'd highly recommend contacting the faculty/auditioner and asking him/her if that will do.

    Also, if you can't get into the composition focus at first then I recommend picking up a music education major instead and then re-auditioning your sophomore year... 80% of your music courses will be the general theory, ensembles, history and instrument classes that every music major will have to take... You'll be fine if you pick up the composition focus your sophomore or junior year.

  • Judy H
    Lv 4
    7 years ago

    The schools will most likely not be able to ascertain your talent as a classical music composer from your jazz lead sheets. However, it will show that you have an important skill - that you know how chord progressions work. Take some private lessons and learn how to notate in full. Then submit three fully notated pieces. That's what I did, and I got into the graduate program at San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Good luck! p.s. "baseline" is for baseball. Bass line is for music.

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