Auditions

Audition Requirements
Double Bass/Electric Bass
Drum Set
Piano
All other instruments
Video Audi­tions

Get Started

Admis­sion to the Jazz and Improvised Music pro­gram is by audi­tion. The num­ber of open slots for new stu­dents is lim­ited, and com­pe­ti­tion is tra­di­tion­ally very high to get into the pro­gram. Audi­tions are held shortly after the new year. For up to date infor­ma­tion about audi­tion dates and times please see the UW School of Music Audi­tion infor­ma­tion page.

Schol­ar­ships are awarded yearly fol­low­ing the Jan­u­ary and Feb­ru­ary audi­tions. Stu­dents who are pur­su­ing degrees in per­for­mance will auto­mat­i­cally be con­sid­ered for schol­ar­ship at the time of their audi­tion.

Audition Requirements

For live auditions, each applicant will have 15 minutes to perform. Video auditions are also possible, (see below for information on auditioning by video). A drum set, bass amp, guitar amp and piano will be provided for the audition. A CD player with speakers will also be available for backing tracks.

Double Bass/Electric Bass

  • Perform walking bass lines based on the following chord progressions: 12 bar blues in 2 keys, Rhythm changes in B-flat, How High the Moon (Ornithology) in G, Cherokee in B-flat.
  • Play the following melodies: Any standard based on 12 bar blues, Any melody based on rhythm changes in B-flat, How High the Moon or Ornithology in G, Cherokee in B-flat.
  • Be prepared to improvise a solo on above chord changes.
  • Prepare 2 octave scales in major, mixolydian, Dorian, diminished and auxiliary diminished.
  • Prepare the following arpeggios in at least one octave: Major, minor, diminished, augmented and dominant seventh.


Drum Set

  • Perform a written jazz drum solo transcription, examples include; Max Roach, Joy Spring or Jacqui; Philly Joe Jones, Locomotion.
  • Demonstrate basic rudiments; double stroke roll, paradiddle rudiments etc.
  • Demonstrate Jazz, Latin, and funk styles.
  • Improvise over standard 32-bar form in a jazz style.
  • Sight-read an excerpt from a big band chart demonstrating the ability to set-up ensemble figures.


Piano

  • Major scales 3 octaves, hands together.
  • Be able to play and improvise 3 jazz standards in solo piano style (e.g., Green Dolphin Street, My Romance, All the Things You Are, Night and Day, Blue Bossa, I Love You, Confirmation, Stella By Starlight).
  • Play a “Blues” in the Jazz style
  • Sight-read a “lead” sheet.


All other instruments

  • Major scales memorized.
  • Be able to play and improvise 3 jazz standards in solo style (e.g ., Green Dolphin Street, My Romance, All the Things You Are, Night and Day, Blue Bossa, I Love You, Confirmation, Stella By Starlight), one must be a standard jazz tune in a swing feel, and two can be chosen from Blues, Latin, Funk, Ballad, etc.
  • Sight-reading – Material selected by faculty.

 Video Audi­tions

While in-person audi­tions are highly encour­aged, if you live more than 1,000 miles from Seat­tle, Wash­ing­ton, you will be eli­gi­ble to audi­tion via video. To sub­mit your audi­tion video in lieu of a live audi­tion, please see the infor­ma­tion on the UW Audi­tion Infor­ma­tion Page