Graduate Jazz Instrument Audition Requirements

The deadlines for receipt of all audition materials, including recordings and a completed audition form, are:

     November 15, 2021 – for admission in Spring 2022
     March 2, 2022 – for Regular Decision for admission in Fall 2022

Prior to recording your audition, you MUST contact your performance area coordinator:

     Charlie Young, III
     Coordinator of Jazz Instrument Studies
     cyoung@howard.edu
     202-806-7872

Once you have recorded your audition and uploaded it to a private YouTube channel,

     • download a computer-fillable audition form and complete the appropriate sections;
     • open a new email, address it to your performance area coordinator, and attach the audition form;
     place the link to your recorded audition materials in the body of the email; and
      send the email to your performance area coordinator by the applicable audition deadline.


Graduate Jazz Instrument Audition Requirements

Advanced technical skill on the chosen instrument; and

Good improvisation skills as they relate to standard jazz literature.

All major, harmonic minor, jazz melodic minor, diminished, and super-locrian (diminished whole tone) scales. 

Arpeggiate the following chord qualities up to the 9th, in 16th notes at a minimum metronome marking of quarter note = 66 bpm:

     • all major, minor, dominant, and minor-major 7th chords

Performance of four contrasting jazz compositions (ex. medium tempo, ballad, 7/4, uptempo, swing, boss nova, samba, Afro-Cuban, etc.) from memory. The songs can be recorded with the aid of backing tracks or unaccompanied.

Additionally, please submit a video recording of you performing a transcribed jazz solo from memory with the recording.

Bass players must play the melodies to all audition selections. Arpeggios may be slowed down. 

Drummers must demonstrate a knowledge of song form during their performance. The use of brushes is required on at least one selection.

An interview will follow the audition—either immediately after a live audition, or by Zoom or telephone call at a future scheduled time for a recorded audition.