Explore the opportunities available for students to learn more and audition for the Greatbatch School of Music at Houghton College.
Audition Process & Requirements
All applicants to the School of Music are required to prepare and present an entrance audition. These auditions are designed to give studio faculty opportunity to meet each applicant and to assess strengths and potential for success in collegiate music studies. For the Fall 2021 semester, auditions will be held remotely via YouTube or Zoom.
The completed music application and two teacher recommendation forms must be submitted prior to scheduling an audition. We strongly recommend, for fullest consideration regarding admission & scholarship, that auditions be completed on or before February 19th.
Perform two solo pieces or movements demonstrating both a slow, tonal and a faster, technical style.
- Perform one etude, solo piece or movement demonstrating slow, lyrical style (approx. 3-5 min.)
- Perform one etude, solo piece or movement demonstrating fast, more technical demands. (approx. 3-5 min.)
- Be prepared to play any major scale, if requested.
- Sight-read one or two short excerpts provided by the instrumental faculty in the audition, if requested.
Students interested in organ may audition on either organ or piano, depending on which will best demonstrate the student’s abilities. If auditioning on piano, requirements for piano majors should be followed.
- Perform two or three selections from contrasting style periods, with at least one from the Baroque.
- Play a hymn of the student’s choice in a manner suitable for leading a congregation.
- Scales & arpeggios may be requested.
- Sight-read one or two short chorale preludes selected by faculty in the audition.
- Perform two or three pieces or movements from contrasting style periods (Baroque, Classic, Romantic, 20th Century). Please limit any fold, hymn, or contemporary arrangements to one.
- Perform from memory, if possible.
- Sight-read one or two short excerpts selected by the faculty in the audition.
In addition to an audition on the major instrument or voice, applicants will have an interview with the theory/composition faculty.
- If possible, scores and/or tapes of original compositions should be brought to this interview. Prior development of keyboard skills is strongly encouraged.
- Sing two selections in contrasting styles, demonstrating both a slow, lyric style and a faster, more technical style.
- If prior voice study has included foreign languages, sing in the foreign language, if possible.
- When possible, select literature from the standard repertoire of easy English and Italian Art Songs.
- Learn and be prepared to sing an arrangement of “The Ash Grove” (mailed to you with your application materials, or download here). Two different keys will be provided; select the one which best fits your voice range.
- Applicants with prior choral experience, but no formal voice study, are encouraged to audition with solos selected and prepared with the guidance of their choral director.
- Prepare an audition demonstrating development levels on each of these three areas: Snare drum, mallets (marimba or xylophone), and timpani.
- Applicants typically choose to demonstrate their playing level on their primary instrument first by playing a solo chosen from their state solo listings (ex: NYSSMA Manual)
- The typical audition generally consists of the performance of a snare drum solo, etude or exercise, then a mallet solo or exercise, and then an exercise for 2, 3 or 4 timpani demonstrating your tuning and technical skills. You may also perform on drum set, preferably with a CD accompaniment.