Skip to main content

Audition and Portfolio Review Requirements

Below are the audition or portfolio requirements for undergraduate programs offered through the College of Creative Arts. 



School of Art & Design Portfolio Requirements

With the exception of Art History and Interactive Design for Media, all School of Art & Design majors require a portfolio review for admission.

Portfolios for incoming students must be uploaded through the program application for admissions consideration in the studio arts programs. To receive scholarship consideration, students must also attend a Portfolio Review Day or meet with faculty on campus for a private portfolio review. 


Students are encouraged to submit their School of Art & Design application as early as possible to reserve their place at a portfolio review day. Upon submission of the School of Art & Design application they will receive the link to our portfolio upload page. Before submitting a portfolio students must already have received admission to the university.


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. Digital Portfolio Upload
    The portfolio should include 8 to 15 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. 
    T he images should be  labeled with name, title, medium, and work dimensions.

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, 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

West Virginia University School of Theatre & Dance does not require a Prescreen submission as part of the application process, the requirements below are for video auditions only. WVU Theatre & Dance uses digital audition submission requirements from  Musical Theatre Common Prescreen criteria, endorsed by Paper Mill Playhouse .


Please upload one video for your song and monologue package and another video for your dance audition. Each piece should be uploaded as a separate piece of media; please do not upload one continuous video.  


Slate

There should not be a separate “slate” video, rather slates are to appear at the beginning of each piece.The proper slate for a song is to share  your name, the  title, and  show in which it appears.

The proper slate for a monologue is to share  your name, the  title of the play, and the  playwright.


Songs

Students should prepare 2-contrasting pieces:

  • One song should be a ballad and one song should be an uptempo
  • Each song file should be 60-90 seconds (this time limit includes the slate at the beginning of the piece and is strictly adhered to; please do not upload media files longer than 90 seconds)
  • Songs should be filmed in a ¾ shot which means the top of the head to the knees should be visible in the frame.

You may choose from options A or B included below.


OPTION A

  • One song should be written prior to 1970. This song can be either the uptempo or the ballad (student’s choice).
  • One song should be written after 1970 and contrast the style of the first.

OPTION B

  • Both songs should be from contemporary musicals (any musical written after 1970) contrasting in style.

Monologues

  • Monologues must be from a published play.
  • Monologues cannot be from musicals, television shows, or movies.
  • Each monologue file should be 60-90 seconds in length (this time limit includes the slate at the beginning of the piece and is strictly adhered to; please do not upload media files longer than 90 seconds)
  • Monologue Criteria: 1, 60-90 second contemporary monologue (written during the 20th Century-present) from a published play. This time limit includes the slate at the beginning of the piece and is strictly adhered to; please do not upload media files longer than 90 seconds.
  • Contemporary monologue should be filmed in a “close-up” shot which means the top of the head to the chest should be visible in the frame.

Wild Card Video

  • You are welcome to but not required to submit a Wild Card video.
  • Submissions should be no more than 60 seconds.
  • This media can be ANYTHING you want: a special skill, an interesting story about yourself, a passion speech, an instrument that you play, etc.  “What do you want us to know about you?” and  “What makes you unique?”.

Dance

30-60 seconds of dance, in whatever dance discipline you are most comfortable with: jazz, ballet, modern, African, hip hop, lyrical, or contemporary.  

  • No barre work. A ballet solo is acceptable. 
  • No tap. For applicants that tap, consider showcasing that skill as part of your wild card submission.
  • Please use steps, movement, and physical vocabulary that you are familiar with and can execute well.  
  • Dance media can be self-choreographed, but must be a solo video of you. This can include a show, competition, or other performance so long as you are clearly featured on your own. 
  • All choreography must be performed to music; no “a cappella” dance media please.


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)

Students applying for Spring 2021 or Fall 2021 consideration  should submit two audition videos 


Video 1.) Consisting of a ballet class (work at the barre, center and across the floor).  There is no need to show work on both sides.


Video 2.) A dance solo video should include a performance by the dancer in a studio setting.  The performance solo should be in a style that best represents the dancer, their strengths and performance qualities. The video should be at least 90 seconds but no more than 4 minutes in length.  Please do not include videos from public performance.


Students must also participate in the interview, scheduled through the Dance Program Application. 



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 (Waived for 2021 applicants)

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).


Piano

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.

Guitar

Jazz Performance: Perform two jazz standards of contrasting tempos and styles (e.g. ballad, medium swing, up-tempo, bossa nova). Applicants must state the melody of the standard tune and then improvise on the full song form at least one time through. 

 

For the Jazz Performance audition, applicants may choose to perform the tunes in any combination of the following ways:

  1) Solo guitar arrangement with no accompaniment (chords, bass notes, and melody covered at the   same time). This is the most challenging setting of the three options, as the applicant will still be   expected to improvise on the form of the tune.

  2) Accompanied by one (1) additional performer on one of the following rhythm instruments: piano,   guitar, or bass. Accompanists are not provided by the school, so if the applicant wishes to perform   with a live accompanist they must make arrangements to bring one in themselves. 

  3) Accompanied by a pre-recorded backing track (such as the play-along Aebersold CDs or the   iReal Pro app). The applicant must provide their own backing track and the school will provide a   stereo system for playback. 

 

Music Therapy, Music Industry, Music Education, Composition, Music Minors, and all other non-performance tracks:

Perform two pieces of contrasting styles that showcase your abilities as a guitarist. We suggest that applicants select pieces that "stand alone" as solo material rather than guitar parts taken out of the context of an ensemble recording. The selection of classical, jazz, or folk finger-style repertoire is highly encouraged; although other styles are acceptable too. Keep in mind that the school does not provide accompanists, so if an applicant requires accompaniment for their audition pieces, it must be in the form of a pre-recorded backing track, provided on a CD or MP3 player by the applicant. The school will provide a stereo system for playback. Remember to select pieces that showcase some or all of the following: guitar technique, ability to improvise, and solid timekeeping. Applicants may sing while playing their selections as long as the main purpose is to show off their guitar skills. 


Woodwinds

  • 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

Trumpet Audition Requirements
Undergraduate Trumpet (BME, IND, BA, COMP, THER)

Candidates are encouraged to showcase their versatility in classical and jazz idioms. Please prepare the following:

  • Three contrasting pieces of choice (i.e. solos, etudes, movements from concertos or sonatas). 

    • Suggested solos (but not limited to the following):

      • Pennequin Morceau de Concert, Barat Andante et Scherzo, Balay Prelude et Ballade or Andante et Allegretto, Cornet solo by Herbert Clarke, Ropartz Andante et Allegro

    • Suggested etudes (but not limited to the following):

      • Bordogni Melodious Etudes for Trumpet, Charlier 36 Études Transcendantes, Arbans Characteristic Studies 

  • Chromatic scale from lowest to highest notes.

  • (Optional, but strongly encouraged) - Showcase ability in jazz/commercial music. This can take the form of preparing a lead trumpet part from a swing, funk, Latin/salsa chart, and/or improvising over a bules, rhythm changes, or other standard tune(s).

Additional Requirements for Trumpet Performance (BM)

  • Three standard orchestral or military band excerpts if applicable to desired career path.

Additional Components to the audition (all majors)

  • Sight-Reading

Undergraduate Trumpet (Jazz Studies, BM)

Applicants are encouraged to showcase their versatility on the trumpet. Please prepare the following:

  • One piece from the classical trumpet repertoire (i.e. a solo, etude or movement from a concerto or sonata) that demonstrates an understanding of classical trumpet tone, phrasing, and style. 

  • Major scales. Additional scales are encouraged if prepared.

  • Chromatic scale from lowest to highest notes.

  • Solo transcription, or jazz etude (in swing, funk or Latin/salsa styles).

  • Play the melody and improvise over one jazz standard and medium tempo blues of choice. Be prepared to improvise for several choruses.

    • Possible jazz standards options (but not limited to these): There Will Never Be Another You, Autumn Leaves, It Could Happen to You, Recorda-me, All the Things You Are, But Not for Me, Blue Bossa, All of Me, Four etc.

    • Applicants must provide their own accompaniment! Play-alongs or good quality accompaniment tracks are acceptable. 

  • (Optional but encouraged): Demonstrate lead playing ability by preparing two contrasting excerpts.

Additional Components to the audition:

  • Sight-Reading

Horn (BM, BME, IND, BA, COMP, THER)

Applicants are encouraged to prepare the following:

  • Two contrasting movements from the solo repertoire. Suggested works (but not limited to the following):

    • Mozart Concertos 2, 3, or 4, R. Strauss Concerto No. 1, Beethoven Sonata, Dukas Villanelle, Saint-Saens Morceau de Concert, or comparable selection

  • At least one etude. Suggested etude book (but not limited to the following):

    • Kopprasch Book 1 or 2, Maxime-Alphonse Book 2 or 3, Pottag Melodious Studies, or comparable etude selections.

  • Additional Requirements for Horn Performance (BM) 

    • Three standard orchestral excerpts.

Feel free to reach out to Jonas Thoms (jonas.thoms@mail.wvu.edu) with any questions about musical selections.


Tenor Trombone/Bass Trombone (BME, IND, BA, COMP, THER)

Videos should be shot in a way that the mouthpiece/embouchure is clearly visible. Applicants are encouraged to prepare the following:

  • Two contrasting movements from the solo repertoire. Suggested works: 

    • Tenor: David Concertino (mvt 1+2), Saint-Saens Cavatine or comparable selection

    • Bass: Lebedev Concerto in One movement, Koetsier Allegro Maestoso or comparable selection

  • At least one etude. Suggested etude books:

    • Tenor: Bordogni Vocalises, Voxman Selected Studies

    • Bass: Bordogni Vocalises (down octave)

  • (Optional, but encouraged) - Showcase ability in jazz/commercial/electronic music. This can take the form of preparing a lead/bass trombone part from a swing, funk, Latin/salsa chart, and/or improvising over a blues, rhythm changes, or other standard tune(s).

Additional Requirements for Trombone Performance (BM)

  • At least three standard excerpts (e.g. Berlioz: Hungarian March, Wagner: The Ride of the Valkyries).

  • One contrasting etude (e.g. Bordogni, Kopprasch, Blazhevich, Tyrell).

Undergraduate Tenor Trombone & Bass Trombone (Jazz Studies, BM)

Applicants are encouraged to showcase their versatility on the trombone and use appropriate stylistic effects (i.e. plunger mute). Please prepare the following:

  • One piece from the classical trombone repertoire (i.e. a solo, etude or movement from a concerto or sonata) that demonstrates an understanding of classical trombone tone, phrasing, and style.

  • Major scales. Additional scales are encouraged if prepared.

  • Chromatic scale from lowest to highest notes.

  • Solo transcription, or jazz etude (in swing, funk or Latin/salsa styles).

  • Play the melody and improvise over one jazz standard and medium tempo blues of choice. Be prepared to improvise for several choruses.

    • Possible jazz standards options (but not limited to these): There Will Never Be Another You, Autumn Leaves, It Could Happen to You, All the Things You Are, Blue Bossa, All of Me, Four, On Green Dolphin Street, etc.

    • Applicants must provide their own accompaniment! Play-alongs or good quality accompaniment tracks are acceptable. 

(Optional but encouraged): Demonstrate lead or bass playing ability by preparing two contrasting excerpts.


Feel free to reach out to Hakeem Bilal (hakeem.bilal@mail.wvu.edu) with any questions about musical selections.


Tuba/Euph (BME, IND, BA, COMP, THER)

Please prepare the following:

  • Three contrasting pieces of choice. 

    • These can include etudes from various books such as Bordogni, Blazevich, Tyrell, or Kopprasch including material previously learned from all-state auditions. A solo work is also recommended. Works by Vaughan Williams, Haddad, and Barat have been successfully used in the past. 

 

Undergraduate Tuba/Euph Performance (BM) 

Please prepare the following:

  • One solo piece of choice. Suggested pieces include (but not limited to the following):

    • Works by Gregson and/or Horovitz.

  • Two advanced etudes. Suggested etude books include (but not limited to the following):

    • Tuba

      • Snedecor, Low Etudes for Tuba

      • Bobo, Bach for the Tuba

    • Euphonium

      • Kopprasch, 60 Etudes for High Tuba or Euphonium

      • Rochut, Melodious Etudes for Trombone Book 2 

  • Three standard orchestral or military band excerpts if applicable to desired career path.

Please feel free to contact Carson McTeer (John.McTeer@mail.wvu.edu) for suggestions and/or questions.


Percussion

  • 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
Percussion Audition for Music Industry multi-instrumental:
  • 3 different styles on the drum set (rock, jazz, latin, or afro-cuban, etc.).  Record 3 different tracks which each lasting approximately 1 minute in length.  
  • Video should demonstrate good control/timing of the style, and ability to improvise (add fills).
  • Record an intermediate snare drum solo.  Recomended: Mitchell Peters Intermediate Snare Drum book   https://www.steveweissmusic.com/product/intermediate-snare-drum-studies-mitchell-peters/snare-drum-books.  (Students may play any solos from Nos. 1 through 15 for the audition)

Voice

  • 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.

Composition

  • 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.

Jazz

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. 


Those students interested in pursuing music education with a Jazz emphasis should prepare for the audition based on the requirements below.


The auditions will consist of the following:


Saxophone
  • 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 
Trumpet (Jazz Studies, BM)
Applicants are encouraged to showcase their versatility on the trumpet. Please prepare the following:
    • One piece from the classical trumpet repertoire (i.e. a solo, etude or movement from a concerto or sonata) that demonstrates an understanding of classical trumpet tone, phrasing, and style. 
    • Major scales. Additional scales are encouraged if prepared.
    • Chromatic scale from lowest to highest notes.
    • S olo transcription, or jazz etude (in swing, funk or Latin/salsa styles).
    • Play the melody and improvise over one jazz standard and medium tempo blues of choice. Be prepared to improvise for several choruses.
    • Possible jazz standards options (but not limited to these): There Will Never Be Another You, Autumn Leaves, It Could Happen to You, Recorda-me, All the Things You Are, But Not for Me, Blue Bossa, All of Me, Four etc.
    • Applicants must provide their own accompaniment! Play-alongs or good quality accompaniment tracks are acceptable. 
    • Sight-Reading
    • ( Optional but encouraged): Demonstrate lead playing ability by preparing two contrasting excerpts.
    Feel free to reach out to Dr. Robert Sears ( robert.sears@mail.wvu.edu ) with any questions about musical selections.

    Tenor Trombone/Bass Trombone (Jazz Studies, BM)
    Applicants are encouraged to showcase their versatility on the trombone and use appropriate stylistic effects (e.g. plunger mute). Please prepare the following:

    • One piece from the classical trombone repertoire (i.e. a solo, etude or movement from a concerto or sonata) that demonstrates an understanding of classical trombone tone, phrasing, and style.
    • Major scales. Additional scales are encouraged if prepared.
    • Chromatic scale from lowest to highest notes.
    • Solo transcription, or jazz etude (in swing, funk or Latin/salsa styles).
    • Play the melody and improvise over one jazz standard and medium tempo blues of choice. Be prepared to improvise for several choruses.
    • Possible jazz standards options (but not limited to these): There Will Never Be Another You, Autumn Leaves, It Could Happen to You, All the Things You Are, Blue Bossa, All of Me, Four, On Green Dolphin Street, etc.
    • Applicants must provide their own accompaniment! Play-alongs or good quality accompaniment tracks are acceptable. 
    • (Optional but encouraged): Demonstrate lead or bass playing ability by preparing two contrasting excerpts.
    Feel free to reach out to Hakeem Bilal ( hakeem.bilal@mail.wvu.edu ) with any questions about musical selections.


    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
    Piano

    • All 12 major scales are required and the ability to perform additional scales is encouraged
    • Perform a solo transcription or a traditional etude in any style 
    • Be prepared to improvise and comp for several choruses on a medium tempo blues progression
    • Play an unaccompanied ballad with a chorus of improvisation
    • Perform a piece with a samba, bossa nova, or straight 8th feel
    • Be able to demonstrate comping ability

    Connect with us