Prospective students often audition live during their senior year of high school; many also wait until they have arrived on campus in the Fall. In cases where a live audition is not possible, submission of a recording (often through a private YouTube or SoundCloud link, CD or other on-line or digital media) it is strongly encouraged and highly recommended. These and any requests for a live audition should be sent directly to Dr. Richard Prior, Director of Orchestral and Performance Studies.

A live audition or submission of supplemental materials enables us to provide important feedback and contribute to the admissions process in the evaluation of candidates with Emory Admissions. Students can be preliminarily admitted to the music major or recommended for the ensemble and chamber music programs but only pending their acceptance to Emory through the regular college admissions process.

For admitted Freshmen and returning students, placement auditions for the 2016-2017 Season  are Tuesday August 23rd through Friday, August 26th starting immediately before classes begin. In these auditions instrumental musicians (woodwinds, brass, strings and percussion) will be considered for all ensemble opportunities at Emory University. These include the Emory University Symphony Orchestra, the Emory Wind Ensemble, the Chamber Music Program and if interested, individual lessons and the music major. Again, you do NOT have to be a music major to participate. Students accepted into the program are expected to be enrolled for the season, i.e. Fall and Spring semesters, assuming satisfactory progress is demonstrated.

There is no set or prescribed repertoire for Emory instrumental auditions; we encourage students to prepare pieces that best demonstrate their current level of performance and potential, normally under the close guidance of their private teacher. Students should prepare two contrasting works of their own choosing: one lyrical in a moderate tempo and one technical in a faster tempo.

For live auditions during the admissions process (including scholarships auditions) and submitted supplemental materials, these selections should not exceed more than twenty minutes combined.

For ensemble placement auditions held at the start of the year for admitted Freshmen and returning students, these selections should not exceed more than six minutes combined.

In both cases, a single piece with contrasting sections is also an acceptable option. Standard solo, orchestral and etude repertoire are all appropriate choices. In a live audition some instrument-appropriate major scales will be asked for (in whatever pattern you are used too) and a sight-reading excerpt will be provided. Students are evaluated on the basis of tone quality, intonation, rhythmic accuracy, musicianship, expressiveness, and reading ability.

Please click here for Percussion-specific requirements.

Remember: auditions and supplemental materials are simply a positive indication of your potential and current level; we very much want to hear you and see how far you might grow as a musician if you choose to attend Emory and participate!

For admitted Freshmen and returning students, everybody has a multitude of things to do particularly before arriving on campus. The purpose of the audition is to assess your potential with the understanding that, as with any other Emory performance or academic class, every student progresses. Also, remember that true to the spirit of the liberal arts environment, the 90-member orchestra draws its membership from not only the Department of Music but from all disciplines across the campus. You do not have to major or minor in music in order to participate; also private lessons are available to non-majors in all of the orchestral instruments. Take a moment to look at the Members page to get a sense of the breadth of majors that populate the orchestra.

Sometimes admitted students wait until the second semester of their freshmen year to try and audition; we would strongly recommend against this as a viable strategy. There are rarely places available in the middle of the season and orchestra members accepted in the Fall play for the season (Fall and Spring). It is an extremely positive reflection on the program that most students participate for all four years of their undergraduate career. Therefore, waiting until your sophomore year to audition is also highly inadvisable. You would be competing against all of the returning members as well as the incoming class of freshmen, in addition to not having played for a year.

Admitted Freshmen and returning Emory students may schedule a time for Fall placement auditions by following the link to the eAudition system. THE AUDITION LINK WILL NOT BE LIVE UNTIL SUMMER, 2018! Students – particularly incoming Freshmen – who may not yet know their class schedule should go ahead and schedule regardless and adjust their time if necessary by emailing Dr. Prior directly the week of auditions and first few days of classes. Make sure you select Emory Instrumental and not Emory Youth Symphony Orchestra (EYSO) when registering.

If you have any problems with the system,  please email Martha Shockey in the Music Department at [email protected].

General inquiries including questions concerning audition requirements or conflicts with available audition times may be directed to Dr. Richard Prior at 404.712.8625 or [email protected]. Remember to check your Emory e-mail accounts to stay informed and on top of important correspondence during orientation.