College of Fine Arts Music

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Music Scholarship Auditions are being held on campus February 15 & 22, 2014.
The tape or CD Audition due date is March 1, 2013.

Please contact Dr. David Holdhusen (
if you have questions about the audition process.

Listed below are guidelines and suggested repertoire for the undergraduate music entrance and scholarship audition. Please prepare two selections in contrasting styles (i.e., one slow tempo, one fast; one emphasizing sustained phrases, one emphasizing rhythmic or quick articulation) for your audition. You may audition in more than one area (i.e., voice and flute, trumpet and violin, etc.) If you have questions about repertoire choices for the audition, please contact directly the Appropriate Faculty Member

Please select and prepare your repertoire well in advance so you have enough time to perform to the best of your abilities. In your audition, the scholarship committee is listening to and evaluating your current skills as well as your potential to grow as a musician. It is important for us to assess whether each student we admit and award scholarships to has the potential to be successful in the music profession. 

The department can provide an accompanist for your audition or you may bring your own. If you would like to use our accompanist, please send a copy of the score at least three weeks prior to the audition date.

On the day of the audition, please arrive at least one hour prior to your scheduled audition time.  Practice/warm up rooms will be available, and you will have a time scheduled to rehearse with the USD accompanist if requested.

Each student will have a 10 minute audition time – please plan your repertoire accordingly. More time will be granted if performing on multiple instruments. After you perform, you will meet the faculty and have an opportunity to ask questions regarding the music program.  


Please complete and submit the Music Scholarship Form. A member of the scholarship committee will contact you to set up an audition time.

  • Galliard: Sonata I in A
  • Galliard: Sonata V in D, especially mov'ts 3 and 4
  • Paul Koepke: Rondo (from Suite in G)  pub. by Rubank
  • Pierre LaPlante: Gloucester pub. Shawnee
  • Marcello: Sonata in E pub. International
  • Senaille: Allegro Spiritoso pub. Southern
  • Burrill Phillips: Concertpiece
bass trombone

Pieces such as these or something similar should be used for the audition:

  • Lebedev – Concerto in One Movement
  • Sachse - Konzert

One movement of concerto is required and one contrasting piece, such as:

  • Haydn C major cello concerto and Faure "Elegie"
  • one scale 3 octaves with arpeggio: E flat, E, F, A or B flat majors
  • one of the following etudes from Popper High School of Cello Playing: #1, #6, #11 or one of the following etudes from Schroeder 170 Foundation Studies for Violoncello: #44-46-47-55-56-62-63-70-73

Undergraduate: Please be prepared to play a solo piece. 
Suggested repertoire: any solo appropriate for your local or regional Solo and Ensemble Contest. Scales and sight reading are not required. 

Graduate: Please be prepared to play a solo piece or pieces. Suggested repertoire: any solo piece or pieces that would be appropriate for a senior recital. Scales and sight reading are not required. 

Please feel free to email if you have any questions.


Pieces such as these or something similar should be used for the audition:

  • Galliard – Sonata no. I
  • Capuzzi – Andante and Rondo
  • Bellstedt – Napoli
  • Pryor – Blue Bells of Scotland
Student should be prepared to play in two contrasting styles (e.g., slow and legato; and fast and rhythmic). This can be in a single work or movement or in two shorter pieces. Examples of appropriate repertoire includes J.S. Bach sonatas, Telemann's Suite in A minor or Gaubert's Madrigal.
  • Beethoven Horn Sonata, Op. 17
  • a Haydn or Mozart Horn Concerto
  • a Franz Strauss or Richard Strauss Horn Concerto 
  • an etude from a standard collection such as those of J.F. Gallay, Henri Kling, Maxime-Alphonse or excerpts of the second movement solo from Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 5
  • excerpts from Shostakovich's Symphony No.5
  • passages from the Richard Strauss tone poems for orchestra 
  • one of the Preludes and Fugues from the Eight Little Preludes and Fugues or a larger Bach Prelude or Fugue
  • a chorale prelude from the early Baroque period
  • a piece from the Romantic period

Prepare solos on snare drum, and any of the following:

  • mallet keyboards
  • timpani
  • multiple percussion
  • drumset

The playing of scales or sightreading is not required.


Two works of contrasting style from two of the four periods of music: 

  • Baroque
  • Classic
  • Romantic
  • Contemporary

Also see:

  • Chanson et Passepied by Jeanine Rueff (for alto saxophone)
  • Sonata by Henri Eccles/arr. Sigurd Rascher (a slow and fast movement; for alto saxophone)
  • A slow and fast etude from 48 Studies by Ferling edited by Marcel Mule (for all saxophones)
  • Sonata in G Minor by Antonio Vivaldi/arr. Sigurd Rascher (for tenor saxophone)
  • Sonatina by William Presser (a slow and fast movement; for baritone saxophone)
string bass
Play a three octave scale and two pieces in contrasting styles, such as a sonata by Vivaldi or Marcello, or an etude from all-state repertoire.

Pieces such as these or something similar should be used for the audition:

  • Guilmant - Morceau Symphonique
  • White - Sonata
  • Saint-Saëns – Cavatine
  • Barat - Andante et Allegro

Pieces such as these or something similar should be used for the audition:

  • Barat - Fantasie in Eb
  • Handel - Aria con Varzioni
  • Ropartz - Andante et Allegro
  • Hadyn Concerto - 1st movement
  • Hummel Concerto - 1st movement

Pieces such as these or something similar should be used for the audition:

  • Barat – Introduction and Dance
  • Marcello – Sonata no. 1
  • Lebedev – Concerto in One Movement
  • Capuzzi – Andante and Rondo

Pieces such as these or something similar should be used for the audition:

  • a movement of unaccompanied Bach
  • an etude by Kreutzer, Mazas, Bruni or Campagnoli
  • a concerto movement by Telemann or Stamitz
  • a solo from a series, such as Solos For Young Violists Books 4 or 5, or the Suzuki books 5 and upwards.

Play a three octave scale. Play two pieces in contrasting styles, such as:

  • a movement of unaccompanied Bach
  • an etude by Kreutzer, Mazas, or Rode
  • a concerto movement by Vivaldi or Mozart
  • a solo from a violin series book such as Solos For Young Violinists Books 5 or 6 or the Suzuki Books 5 and above
Students should be prepared to sing two pieces in contrasting styles from the art song, folk song, or sacred repertoire. Students are encouraged to sing one piece in a foreign language. Songs should be memorized. For transfer students, three songs should be prepared. One of the pieces must be in a foreign language. If you have questions, please contact one of the voice Faculty Members.