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Audition And Portfolio Day Requirements

School of Art & Design Portfolio Requirements

All applicants must submit a digital portfolio (CD or Jump Drive) with their Personal Artist's Statement to the School of Art and Design. Students must meet attend a Portfolio Review Day or meet with faculty on campus for a private portfolio review in order to receive scholarship 


Students submitting portfolios for admissions consideration only can send them to: 

WVU College of Creative Arts

School of Art & Design 

PO Box 6111 

Morgantown, WV 26501

The portfolio must include…

  1. Personal Statement
    All applicants are required to write a short essay describing interests and creative, academic, and professional goals. Explain reasons why you wish to undertake university study in art on the application. Students pursuing certification in Art Education should include a statement on why they want to teach art. This statement must be single spaced and printed on a single 8 1/2” x 11” sheet of paper.

  2. CD Portfolio Submission
    The portfolio should include 8 to 12 pieces of the best examples of your art work executed in the previous year. 
    Examples in all media are encouraged; painting, sculpture, ceramics, mixed media, photography, electronic media, life drawings, high quality sketchbook pages and CD. 
    The images should be arranged in PowerPoint with each image slide labeled with name, title, medium, and work dimensions.

WVU will not be responsible for any lost or damaged portfolios.

School of Theatre and Dance Audition and Portfolio Requirements

BFA in Acting

Present two contrasting monologues with the presentation consisting of:

  • 2 monologues – One dramatic and one comedic – both from contemporary plays after 1900.
  • The monologue package should be between 3 and 4 minutes total.
  • Your monologue package material should be age-appropriate (your age to 30 years old).
  • Read the plays from which you are selecting monologue material for presentation. This will allow you to make appropriate choices for the material as well as demonstrate an understanding of the play and the characters.
  • Hand props such as a letter or handkerchief are allowed but nothing on a larger scale.
  • Wear audition attire (nice and casual, but comfortable daytime attire); no costuming.
  • Be prepared to present a third monologue of your choice and preference if asked.
  • Avoid dialects, extreme profanity, crying or yelling to show emotion.
  • You may sing 16 or 32 bars of a song from a musical in addition to the monologue package (This presentation will not be included within the 3-4 minute time limit for the monologue package.)
  • An accompanist will be provided. Please have appropriate sheet music in your key.
  • No a cappella performances, self-accompaniment nor use of recorded tracks are allowed.
  • Singing is NOT required for the BFA Acting audition nor for admittance to this degree program, but we invite potential students to present this additional talent during this process: While the BFA in Acting, the BFA in Musical Theatre, and the BA in Dance are separate degree programs, class curriculum for these performance degrees does overlap at times in our efforts to best educate future artists.

BFA in Musical Theatre

The audition will explore your abilities in Theatre, Music and Dance. Therefore please prepare the following:

Two contrasting songs
that show both your acting and vocal range and ability:

  • One up tempo and one ballad. 
  • One of those selections should the entire song while the second should be a 32 bar cutting (which number is in its entirety and which is a cutting is the candidate’s choice).  Selections should be memorized for performance.
  • Please know the shows from which you are choosing the songs to show your understanding of the character and motivations behind the song.
  • An accompanist will be provided. Please have appropriate sheet music in your key. Place your sheet music in a three-ring binder for the accompanist. No a cappella performances, use of recorded tracks or self-accompaniment is allowed.

A one-minute monologue fully-realized and memorized.

Your entire audition package should be around 5 – 6 minutes total.

  • Please have a one-page resume of your theatre/performance experience and a recent headshot or photograph to present at this audition/interview. Please DO NOT staple the resume and photo together.
  • Please review the BFA in Acting requirements for information on material choice, props and attire.

Dance call – After your vocal audition you will be asked to learn/perform a dance combination as part of your dance audition.

Present the best of you in this process; do not show or push some image or idea of what we might want to see. We want to know and see you in this interview and within your audition.

BFA Design Tech

An interview and portfolio review is required for admission and scholarship consideration for all incoming BFA Design/Tech students.

Interview: The BFA Design Tech interview is a chance for us to get to know you. We like to get a sense of your experience in and enthusiasm for theatre.

Portfolio: In a portfolio we are looking to understand your previous experience in theatre and related areas. A good thing to do is use a simple program like Microsoft Powerpoint to present your work. Show photos of productions you have worked on. If possible, include process photos of the specific things you did. The portfolio may also include any artwork, craft or construction projects which illustrate your interests and talent.

Dance (BA)

  • The audition will consist of a ballet class followed by modern technique in the center. Students will be asked to perform a short solo that best represents their stylistic strengths. The solo should be at least 90 seconds long. Music should be ready for play on a digital device or CD.
  • Dress attire: Women: Ballet – pink tights, black leotard ballet slippers, hair in a bun. Modern- tight fitting dance attire, bare foot or in socks, hair in pony tail or up away from face. Men: Ballet – ­ black tights, white top (tank top, t-shirt or white leotard) ballet slippers. Modern – tight fitting dance attire, bare foot or in socks.
  • Please bring a resume and head shot
  • Should you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at West Virginia University School of Theatre & Dance, phone 304-293-2020, fax 304-293-2533.

Theatre (BA)

  1. Have prepared a verbal statement as to what you want out of the program – what you hope to learn – what interests you. If you have a portfolio showing some of the work you have accomplished in theatre or demonstrating what you hope to work with while in the program here you are welcome to present that as well. 
  2. Be prepared to speak about your goals after graduating from the puppetry and creative dramatics program.

School of Music Auditions

Piano Placement Exam

A piano placement evaluation will be administered to undergraduate students (excluding piano majors) during auditions. Students who have had piano study should be prepared for this brief evaluation so they can be placed in the appropriate section of class piano. For the evaluation, students will be asked to play a short piece or excerpt, sight-read, and play or describe experience studying scales and cadences. This evaluation is only for vocal and instrumental music majors (excluding piano majors).


Three works from the standard piano literature representing three different style periods: examples of selections include works from the baroque period (Bach, Handel, Scarlatti, etc.), a sonata movement from the classical period (Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, etc.), a romantic work (Chopin, Schumann, Brahms, etc.), or a contemporary work (Debussy, Copland, Bartók, etc.). A fourth additional piece of the applicant’s choice may also be included.

Violin, Viola & Cello

  • An etude from etude books appropriate for each instrument such as Fiorillo, Kreutzer, Dont, Rode, Mazas, Kayser, Popper, etc.
  • Two contrasting works from two different stylistic periods (Baroque, Classical, Romantic, or 20th Century or 21st Century) of the standard solo repertoire. These can include entire works or individual movements from a major concerto, sonata, or suite.
  • Two or three octave scales may be requested at the audition

Double Bass

  • 1 to 2 Octave Major and Minor Scales. 
  • An etude from Simandl’s “30 Studies for the Development of Tone” or a book of comparable difficulty. 
  • 1 to 2 Contrasting works from the standard solo double bass repertoire such as a Baroque sonata, a concerto, or solos of equal difficulty.


The audition for the guitar studio is an overall evaluation. Most applicants are not equally strong in all areas; in some cases, a deficiency in one area may be mitigated by excelling in another.

Sight reading Fluency in basic sight reading skills is required, and is possibly the most important element of the audition. With hard work, an acceptable level of sight reading ability can be achieved in a matter of a few months. Recommended Preparation: Leavitt, Wm., A Modern Method for guitar, Berklee Seires, Vol. 1 (Milwaukee: Hal Leonard Publications). pp. 4-59

Scales Movable Major Scale Patterns, any key. Useful fingerings may be found in Berklee, Vol. 1 (pp. 60, 70,80, 90, 100); the “3 notes per string” system; or the segovia Diatronic Major and Minor Scales (Belwin Mills Publishing Co.)

Chord Vocabulary Ability to play chords to a jazz tune, in tempo, from a lead sheet or jazz fakebook, is required.

Improvisation Improvisation on a blues or jazz standard of your choice. For this, play-along CDs, such as the Jamey Aebersold Jazz Aids series, are highly recommended and can be mailed to you through Volkwein’s Music (Pittsburgh: 1-800-553-8742; 412-788-5900) or purchased locally. Recommended: “Nothin’ But Blues” or “Blues in All Keys.”

Solo Pieces Two pieces for the solo guitar, in contrasting style. Pieces from the classical repertoire or jazz standards are preferred. NOT acceptable: any piece which is not complete in itself, or not meant for guitar alone, such as an accompainiment for voice or any other instrument; part of an arrangement for a band; or supported by another instrument (e.g., bass, piano, or another guitar).

Guitar Audition for Music Industry

"Folksinger" accompaniment with open position chords, rhythmically strong (i.e. no hesitations or stops between chords), clear strumming or fingestyle patterns. Repertoire may include accompaniment patterns to "Oh Susanna," "Camptown Races" or pop tunes. 


  • All major scales over the full range of the instrument
  • Chromatic scale slurred over the full range of the instrument
  • Two contrasting works from the standard solo repertoire. These can include entire pieces or individual movements from significant concerti or sonatas. One work may be a concert etude composed for the instrument.


  • Brass applicants should prepare two contrasting works from the standard solo repertoire. These may be single movements from a concerto or sonata.
  • Applicants should also prepare at least one etude.
  • Applicants for the performance major are encouraged to prepare anything else that might strengthen their audition (such as prepared orchestral excerpts, etc).


  • Snare drum: Medium to advanced rudimental solo/etude, medium to advanced concert solo/etude, open and closed rolls to be performed, selected rudiments to be performed, sight reading.
  • Keyboard percussion: All major scales and arpeggios, medium to advanced 2 mallet solo/etude in a classical or contemporary style, sight reading, 4 mallet solo/etude in a classical or contemporary style (suggested, but not required)
  • Timpani: Medium 4 drum solo/etude. Tuning within the piece is not required. Drum tuning will be asked apart from the etude/solo.


  • A minimum of three songs, two of which should be from the standard classical art song repertoire. At least one of the two should be in English. The third song may be classical, or it may come from the musical theatre repertoire.
  • All songs should be sung from memory. An accompanist will be provided, and the applicant should bring a copy of the music for the accompanist.


  • One or more scores (on paper) of your composition in hand notation or computer notation. A representative group of pieces in different styles and genres is preferred. Please bring cassette or CD recordings if available. If you do not have your music written down, an audition performance, tape of performance, or a computer disk with a MIDI file for playback in either Vision or Finale 2 or 3 is acceptable.
  • Testing of pitch matching, sight reading (treble & bass clefs), and ability to write down what you hear (melodic dictation) should be expected.
  • It is advisable that composition students have some background in piano.



    Students interested in a major or minor in Jazz Studies will demonstrate their ability on their instrument based on the following requirements. Jazz majors will receive weekly jazz improvisation lessons and will in addition take traditional instrumental lessons to develop fundamental skills. It is suggested that you bring the iReal Pro app or a play-a-long recording with you to the audition. The auditions will consist of the following:


    Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone

    • Major scales are required and additional scales are encouraged
    • Perform a solo transcription or a traditional etude in any style
    • Demonstrate ability with at least two pieces of repertoire (jazz standards or big band parts) that include technical passages and/or improvisation
    • Be prepared to improvise for several choruses on a medium tempo blues progression
    • Be ready to sight read a big band chart
    • If you have a specialty such as lead playing, prepare at least two excerpts that display your ability and be ready to sight read


    Piano and Guitar

    •   Major scales are required and additional scales are encouraged
    •   Perform a solo transcription or a traditional etude in any style
    •   Play an unaccompanied ballad with a chorus of improvisation
    •   Perform a piece at a fast tempo
    •   Perform a piece with a straight 8th or Latin feel
    •   Be prepared to improvise and comp for several choruses on a medium tempo blues progression  in at least three keys
    •   Be able to demonstrate comping ability
    •   Be ready to sight read a big band chart

    Bass – Electric or upright are acceptable for the audition with the understanding that upright proficiency is required before completion of the degree program.

    • Play major scales with at least two fingerings for each scale
    • Perform a solo transcription or traditional etude
    • Walk bass lines for 12 bar blues in at least three different keys at various tempi
    • Demonstrate a bass line in a bossa nova or samba feel
    • Improvise a walking bass on a jazz chord chart
    • Be ready to sight read bass line charts


    Percussion including drums, marimba, and vibes

    • Play the melody to a tune of your choice on the drum set and improvise at least four choruses on the form of the tune
    • Be able to alternate four bar phrases of time and filling in these styles:
    • Swing
    • Bossa nova
    • Samba

    ·        Be prepared to sight read a big band chart

    ·        Marimba/vibes auditions will include scales and arpeggios in addition to etudes, standards, and   jazz improvisation



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