Music Auditions and Assessments

Music Theory and Aural Skills Assessment Information

Music Auditions and Assessment

All programs except Music Technology.

Entrance into the Basic Musicianship, Diploma and Foundations for Music Therapy Studies programs is based on varied requirements.  Please refer to the table below:

Program

Interview Required

Audition Required

Assessments Required

Basic Musicianship

Yes

No

Level 1 Theory and Aural Skills, taken as part of the program interview

Foundation for Music Therapy Studies (FMTS)

Yes

Yes

Level 2 Theory and Aural Skills

Music Diploma

Yes, as part of audition

Yes

Level 2 Theory and Aural Skills

 

Fall 2022 Audition & Assessment Dates

Auditions and assessments for Fall 2022 will be held in person at the New Westminster campus on the following days:

  • Friday, February 18th and Saturday, February 19th
  • Friday, March 18th and Saturday, March 19th
  • Friday, April 29th and Saturday, April 30th
  • Friday, May 20th and Saturday, May 21st
  • Friday, June 10th and Saturday, June 11th
  • Friday, August 26th 

As noted above, August 26th is the final opportunity to write the Level 2 Theory assessment. This must be completed in-person. Acceptance into the program will be subject to seat availability. 

Auditions and Aural Assessments may be completed via Zoom for those who are unable to attend in person. 

Level 1 and Level 2 Theory and Aural Skills Assessments

Music Auditions

Level 1

The Level 1 Music Theory and Aural Assessments are taken together as part of Basic Musicianship applicants’ program interview.  The two assessments gauge each applicant’s rudimentary knowledge and are open ended.  Results are not pass/fail, but will determine the best course placement for success in the Basic Musicianship program.  Applicants who show advanced knowledge and skills will be invited to take the Level 2 assessment(s).

Level 2

The Level 2 Music Theory Assessment gauges applicants’ knowledge of and fluency with theory rudiments and is designed to determine whether placement into MUSC 1110 (Music Diploma level theory) is possible.  Applicants will be allowed a maximum of two attempts for each Fall intake.  For more information, sample questions and links to free online practice options, view/download this PDF:

Level 2 Music Theory Information

The Level 2 Aural Assessment determines whether placement into MUSC 1115 (Music Diploma level aural skills) is possible.  Successful applicants will demonstrate reliable pitch matching ability, accurate melodic memory, sight singing and sight rhythm performances during a short, individual appointment.  Applicants will be allowed a maximum of two attempts for each Fall intake. 

Music Diploma applicants who are unsuccessful at placing into MUSC 1110 and 1115 after two attempts will be advised to enter the Basic Musicianship program.

Foundation for Music Therapy Studies applicants who place into MUSC 1102 Basic Theory and/or MUSC 1103 Basic Aural and Sight Singing Skills after two attempts will be advised to enter the Basic Musicianship Program.

The Level 2 Music Theory and Aural Skills Assessments are booked by contacting the Administrative Associate by email at performingarts@douglascollege.ca.

Please note

Royal Conservatory of Music Theory certificates or AP Music credits do NOT exempt applicants from writing the theory assessment. Candidates who have passed the RCM Advanced Rudiments exam should bring documentation to their assessment. A strong theory background is an asset and theory faculty will consider the possibility for advanced placement.

Audition Requirements

Music Auditions Violin

The following guidelines represent the expected level to be considered for the Performance-level Studio Instruction course (private lessons). Students who do not meet these minimum practical requirements but pass the theory and aural skills assessments will be placed in the General-level Studio Instruction for private lessons.

All applicants must bring one extra copy of the music they are performing to their audition. References to the Royal Conservatory of Music levels are only intended as a guideline for choosing appropriate pieces. Please note: For all instruments and voice, sight reading ability may be assessed during the audition.

Please note:  If your ability to demonstrate your skills or knowledge is impacted by a disability, impairment or chronic illness, please contact Accessibility Services at Douglas College by calling 604 527 5486 or emailing stuserv@douglascollege.ca. The Music Department relies on Accessibility Services to advise us regarding appropriate accommodation strategies and it is important to meet with a member of their team prior to booking an audition or assessment with the Music Department.

Instruments

Pieces
  • 2 pieces or studies in contrasting styles
  • Royal Conservatory of Music Grade 5 or higher
  • Must be played on a classical guitar
Technique
  • Scales (major and minor) F#, G, Ab, A, C, D, Eb (2 octaves)
  • Cadences I-IV-V-I chords (major and minor)

Pieces
  • Two pieces: one pop and one jazz tune
  • Create a simple improvisation over one of them. Melodies and chord changes should be memorized. Be prepared to play both the chords (as an accompaniment) and the melody.  
  • A recorded rhythm section to play along with is acceptable but it must be mp3 or CD. No Youtube or other streaming accompaniment.
  • Please bring two copies of the lead sheets
Technique
  • all major and minor (harmonic and melodic) scales two octaves, ascending and descending, in one position
  • the blues scale in all twelve keys
  • one classical etude that demonstrates your basic technique

Snare Drum, drum set & Mallet instruments provided. Applicants must bring their own sticks.

Pieces
  • One piece on snare drum (page 24 from Morris Goldenberg’s book Modern School of Snare Drum) and one piece on mallet keyboard instrument (page 28 from Morris Goldenberg’s book Modern School for Xylophone)
  • No band parts accepted
Technique
  • Snare: rudiments (rolls, flams, drags, paradiddles, etc.)
  • Mallet: scales and arpeggios (major and minor)

Snare Drum, drum set & Mallet instruments provided. Applicants must bring their own sticks.

Pieces
  • Drum set and/or hand percussion. Demonstrate various styles (latin, jazz swing, world music or rock) on drum set, congas, or other types of hand drums
Technique  
  • Snare: rudiments (rolls, flams, drags, paradiddles, etc.)

Pieces
  • 2 pieces in contrasting styles played from memory
  • Royal Conservatory of Music Grade 10 or higher
Technique
  • Scales (major and minor)
  • Formula patterns
  • Octave scales
  • Chords (solid and broken)
  • Major, minor, dominant 7th, diminished 7th arpeggios
  • Major, minor, dominant 7th, diminished 7th chords – all inversions

Pieces
  • 2 pieces or studies in contrasting styles
  • Royal Conservatory of Music Grade 6 or higher (violin: Gr.8)
  • No orchestral parts accepted.
Technique
  • Violin: Major and minor scales and arpeggi in 3 octaves for the keys of G, A flat, A, B flat, B, C, D flat and D.  Major and minor scales and arpeggi in 2 octaves for the keys of E flat, E, F and F#.  Ascending and descending.  Scales bowings can be one octave per bow when holding the octave note OR 12 notes per bow when doing Galamian style scales.  Arpeggi should be 9 notes per bow for 3 octaves, 6 notes per bow for 2 octaves.
  • Viola and cello: All major and minor scales, two octaves, ascending and descending.
  • Double Bass: All major and minor scales and arpeggios: in 2 octaves for the keys of E, F, and G.  1 octave for all other keys.

Applicants are encouraged, but not required, to bring their own accompanist to the audition.

Pieces
  • Two contrasting pieces: eg. one pop and one jazz tune
  • Create a simple improvisation over one of them. Be prepared to play both the melody and a bass line.
  • Please bring two copies of the sheet music
Technique
  • All major and natural minor scales one octave, ascending and descending
  • The blues scale in all twelve keys, one octave.

Pieces
  • 2 songs, preferably in contrasting styles, to be sung from memory.
  • Students wishing to be considered for performance lessons on classical vocal repertoire should choose audition pieces at RCM (Royal Conservatory of Music) grade six level (or higher) if possible. If you are not familiar with RCM, we encourage you to select repertoire that best allows you to demonstrate your performance skill.
  • Audition repertoire may be Classical (lieder, art song, folksong, oratorio, operetta, opera, etc.), Musical Theatre and/or Jazz. Pop/contemporary genres will be considered upon request
Technique
  • Vocalization (scales, triads, arpeggios)
Voice applicants are required to bring their own accompanists to the audition. 

If this is not possible, please inform the Administrative Associate at least five days before the audition date to obtain contact information of local accompanists-for-hire.

Pieces
  • 2 pieces or studies in contrasting styles
  • Royal Conservatory of Music Grade 6 or higher
  • No band parts or jazz band parts accepted.
  • Two contrasting movements of a single work are acceptable.
Technique
  • All major and minor scales and arpeggios
    (Brass: 1 Octave, Woodwinds: 2 Octaves)

Applicants are encouraged, but not required, to bring their own accompanists to the audition.

Pieces
  • Prepare two contrasting pop or jazz tunes and create a simple improvisation on one.
  • Memorization is not required but please bring your lead sheet with chord changes included.
  • Accompaniment is optional. Recorded rhythm section is acceptable but it must be mp3 or CD. No Youtube or other streaming accompaniment
Technique
  • All major and minor scales up to the ninth and down
  • The blues scale in all keys
  • One classical etude that demonstrates your basic technique
  • Sight reading
  • No band music please