George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

School of Music Admissions

The Bachelor of Arts in Music and Bachelor of Music degrees prepare majors for professional careers and research in music, for state licensure (certification) to teach vocal/choral or instrumental music in elementary and secondary schools, and for graduate work in music and music literature.

Students have many chances to perform in vocal and instrumental ensembles, and they study with nationally and internationally recognized faculty who are performers, conductors, composers, music theoreticians, historians, and music educators. Many instructors are active professionals, as Mason draws from those appearing on stages in nearby Washington, D.C. The School is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music.

Audition Requirements

Complete an audition according to the requirements for your intended degree and concentration or minor. 

Part One

Apply for admission to the university. You may apply for an audition simultaneously with applying to the university.

Part Two

Complete and submit an audition application, which provides the School of Music with information concerning your musical background and allows you to select an audition date. Audition Applications for the 2018-19 Academic year are available in Slideroom beginning August 1, 2017.

You will be notified of the time and location of your audition approximately two weeks prior to the date you selected. Students will get a 15-minute block of time before a committee of the music faculty to audition.

For transfer students with applied-music credits they wish to transfer, the audition will determine how many of those credits may be used towards the Mason applied music requirement. (Disallowed credits, i.e., credits that the audition committee does not accept in fulfillment of the Mason applied music requirement, may be used as electives.) If you have questions, call the Audition Coordinator at 703-993-1380. To make an appointment with Prof. John Kilkenny, Recruitment Coordinator, e-mail him at jkilken1@gmu.edu or call 703-993-5637.

Audition Dates:

Auditions are scheduled through the Slideroom Audition Application:

November 4, 2017
January 27, 2018
February 17, 2018
April 21, 2018 (Transfer Applicants and Admitted Freshmen only)

Part Three

Complete an audition according to the requirements for your intended degree and concentration or minor. Auditions for specific areas, such as instrumentals and vocals, can be found below. 

Music, BA

The Music, Bachelor of Arts degree offers two concentrations:

  • General Music Studies
  • Music Technology

Audition Requirements
  • Percussionists applying for admission to the School of Music should be prepared to demonstrate sight-reading ability on your instrument; play all major scales covering the range of your instrument; and match pitches vocally and sing a major scale. Bring one original copy of your music for the audition committee. For more information, contact John Kilkenny. Download additional guidelines for Percussion Audition Requirements.
  • All other instrumentalists should prepare two selections in contrasting styles (slow-fast, Baroque-20th Century, Italian-English, etc.) totaling approximately 10 minutes. Selections need not be memorized, except for pianists and vocalists, for whom it is strongly encouraged. You should also be prepared to demonstrate sight-reading ability on your instrument; play all major scales covering the range of your instrument; and match pitches vocally and to sing a major scale. Please bring one original copy of your music for the audition committee.
  • Vocalists should prepare two selections in contrasting styles (slow-fast, Baroque-20th Century, Italian-English, etc.) totaling approximately 10 minutes. Selections need not be memorized, except for pianists and vocalists for whom it is strongly encouraged. You should also be prepared to demonstrate sight-reading ability on your voice. Please bring one original copy of your music to the audition for the audition committee. Vocalists should perform with piano accompaniment. Please ascertain your accompanist's availability for your audition. In extenuating circumstances, an accompanist can be provided by the department (fee of $40). Please contact Scott Nichols at 703-993-1390.
  • Music Technology For your audition, please submit a video audition to the SlideRoom portal showcasing approximately 10 minutes of music performed recently on your primary instrument. This video should consist of 2 works in contrasting styles (the styles can be from a variety of genres). In addition, Music Technology applicants must submit a portfolio of 3-5 works that you have mixed, engineered, composed, or worked on in a music technology fashion. This can include projects on Garageband, Logic, Protools, etc. This gives the audition committee a sense of your current experience and how you will fit into our music technology program. 

    As part of your SlideRoom application, please register for one of our audition days where you will meet with our Music Technology Professor for an interview and aural proficiency test. Music Technology applicants will not perform live auditions.

Music, BM

Applicants to the Bachelor of Music in Music degree programs must complete either an instrumental or vocal audition according to the guidelines for the desired concentration. The Bachelor of Music degree offers five concentrations:

Performance Concentration
  • Percussionists applying for admission to the School of Music should be prepared to: demonstrate sight-reading ability on your instrument; play all major scales covering the range of your instrument; and match pitches vocally and to sing a major scale. Bring one original copy of your music for the audition committee. For more information, contact John Kilkenny. Download additional guidelines for Percussion Audition Requirements.
  • All other instrumentalists should prepare two selections in contrasting styles (slow-fast, Baroque-20th Century, Italian-English, etc.) totaling approximately 10 minutes. Selections need not be memorized, except for pianists and vocalists, for whom it is strongly encouraged. They should also be prepared to: demonstrate sight-reading ability on your instrument; play all major scales covering the range of your instrument; and match pitches vocally and to sing a major scale. Bring one original copy of your music for the audition committee.
  • Vocalists should prepare two selections in contrasting styles (slow-fast, Baroque-20th Century, Italian-English, etc.) totaling approximately 10 minutes. Selections need not be memorized, except for pianists and vocalists for whom it is strongly encouraged. You should also be prepared to demonstrate sight-reading ability on your voice. Bring one original copy of your music for the audition committee. Vocalists should perform with piano accompaniment. Please ascertain your accompanist's availability for your audition. In extenuating circumstances, an accompanist can be provided by the department (fee of $40). Please contact Scott Nichols at 703-993-1390.
Jazz Studies Concentration

Applicants to the Bachelor of Music degree program with a concentration in Jazz Studies must:

  • Prepare two (2) selections in contrasting styles: Blues/Bop, Fusion/Cool, Swing/Early Jazz, etc.
  • Prepare one (1) jazz piece, etude or solo transcription.
  • Be prepared to play all major scales.
  • Improvisation over a blues and sight-reading.
  • For additional audition information go to the Jazz Studies Auditions page.
  • Please bring one original copy of your music to the audition for the audition committee.
Composition Concentration

Applicants to the Bachelor of Music degree program with a concentration in Composition must audition as either an instrumentalist or a vocalist according to the performance concentration guidelines listed above. Please bring a printed copy of your composition portfolio to leave with the faculty.

Music Education Concentration

Applicants to the Bachelor of Music degree program with a concentration in Music Education must audition as either an instrumentalist or a vocalist according to the performance concentration guidelines listed above.

Music Technology

For your audition, please submit a video audition to the SlideRoom portal showcasing approximately 10 minutes of music performed recently on your primary instrument. This video should consist of 2 works in contrasting styles (the styles can be from a variety of genres). In addition, Music Technology applicants must submit a portfolio of 3-5 works that you have mixed, engineered, composed, or worked on in a music technology fashion. This can include projects on Garageband, Logic, Protools, etc. This gives the audition committee a sense of your current experience and how you will fit into our music technology program. 

As part of your SlideRoom application, please register for one of our audition days where you will meet with our Music Technology Professor for an interview and aural proficiency test. Music Technology applicants will not perform live auditions.

Minors

Ethnomusicology

Students must first demonstrate to the Ethnomusicology coordinator a basic level of knowledge and training in some area of Western or non-Western music, or earn a grade of B or higher in MUSI 103 or MUSI 431. Prerequisites for specific courses are indicated in the University Catalog.

To declare a minor, please contact School of Music 703-993-1380.

Jazz Studies

Students wishing to declare to the Jazz Studies minor must complete the audition requirements for the Music, BM with a concentration in Jazz Studies. For more information, please visit the Jazz Studies Minor page in the university catalog. 

Contact Darden Purcell to set up an audition.

Music

Students wishing to minor in Music must complete an audition as either an instrumentalist or vocalist according to the requirements for the Bachelor of Music performance concentration. For more information, please visit the Music Minor page in the university catalog.

To declare a minor, please contact School of Music 703-993-1380.

Music and Technology

Auditions are not required for those declaring a minor in Music and Technology. For more information about this 18-credit minor, please visit the Music and Technology Minor page in the university catalog.

To declare a minor, please contact School of Music 703-993-1380.

Music and Well-Being

Acceptance to the Music and Well-Being minor is by interview with the minor coordinator, Professor Glenn Smith. For more information about this 18-credit minor, please visit the Music and Well-Being Minor page in the university catalog.

To declare a minor, please contact School of Music 703-993-1380.

Contact us

Email us or all us: 703-993-1380. Visit us at deLaski Performing Arts Building, A417, George Mason University, 4400 University Drive, Fairfax, VA 22030.

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