Auditions and Screening: Graduate Artist Diploma

Screening material (due by December 1st)

Due to the large number of applicants and limited audition spots, soprano and mezzo voice types must submit video screening material by December 1st before being selected to attend an on-campus audition. If you are currently a McGill student completing a music degree, you are exempt. Upload screening material here (avi, mov, mp4 or wmv format).

Screening video repertoire

  • 5 contrasting pieces, in four major languages, representing operatic and song repertoire.
  • You can include recent recital or professional performances.

For instructions on how to upload your material, follow our application guide.

Auditions

How to prepare for your on-campus audition

  • Check your audition repertoire requirements. Choose material that you are comfortable playing and that showcases your musicianship and technical proficiency.
  • If you are coming from outside Canada, check with Immigration Canada for travel document requirements.

 

On Audition Day:

If you are experiencing travel delays on the day of your audition or you are unable to attend your audition, please email our melanie.collins [at] mcgill.ca (Recruitment Office)

Check-in:

  • A minimum of one hour prior to your audition, you must check-in at the Strathcona Music Building lobby (555 Sherbrooke Street West, Montreal, Quebec).
    *Check-in is also mandatory for current students.
  • Practice rooms are available during the audition period.
  • During check-in, directions to your audition location and practice rooms will be provided.

Tours will be given by the Schulich Ambassadors during the lunch break.
Details will be available at the check-in desk.

Accompanists:

  • Accompanists are provided free of charge for your audition time only.
  • Rehearsal costs vary and are your responsibility.
  • Contact your accompanist at least 48 hours before your audition to arrange rehearsal times, provide music, etc.
    You can also bring your own accompanists, at your expense.
  • Jazz applicants are provided with a rhythm section free of charge for the audition time only and cannot rehearse with them.

 


The Audition:

  • You must bring a list of pieces to be performed, including études and ensemble music.
  • Prepare to be interviewed about your experience and your educational and professional goals.
  • Jazz applicants: In addition, bring copies of your music.
  • The panel may interrupt your audition at any moment in a piece to ensure that auditions proceed on schedule.
  • Auditions last approximately 15 minutes.

 


 

 

 

Where to Stay:

Book a hotel in Montreal:

Special accommodations have been arranged with several downtown hotels. All hotels are within walking distance of the Schulich School of Music.

Special room prices are available to the McGill University community: staff, students, visitors, etc. 

If you are making reservations by phone, be sure to mention McGill University.

Events & Montreal:

Consult our Events Calendar for Schulich School of Music concerts and related events.

See the Discover Montreal website for happenings in the Greater Montreal area.

Audition dates 2019:

Check uApply for your individual audition date, time, location, and accompanist information.

You must graduateadmissions.music [at] mcgill.ca (email our admissions staff) to confirm whether or not you will attend.

  • Bassoon: Sunday, February 17, 2019
  • Cello: Fri., Feb. 15 – Sat., Feb. 16, 2019
  • Clarinet: Sunday, February 3, 2019
  • Double Bass: Friday, February 8, 2019
  • Early Music Instruments/Harpsichord: Sunday, February 17, 2019
  • Early Music Voice: Sunday, February 3, 2019
  • Flute: Saturday, February 2, 2019
  • French Horn: Saturday, February 2, 2019
  • Guitar: Sunday, February 10, 2019
  • Harp: Saturday, March 2, 2019
  • Oboe: Saturday, February 2, 2019
  • Organ: Fri., Feb.22, Sat., Feb. 23, 2019
  • Percussion: Friday, February 8, 2019
  • Piano: Sat., Feb. 23, Sunday, February 24, 2019
  • Piano - collaborative: Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019
  • Saxophone: Saturday, February 16, 2019
  • Trombone: Saturday, February 2, 2019
  • Trumpet: Saturday, February 9, 2019
  • Tuba/Euphonium: Saturday, Feb. 23, 2019
  • Viola: Saturday, February 9, 2019
  • Violin: Fri., Feb. 15 – Sun., Feb. 17, 2019
  • Early Music Voice: Sunday, February 3, 2019
  • Voice: Fri. Feb. 1 - Sun. Feb. 3, 2019

Recorded auditions

If you cannot participate in on-campus auditions due to travel constraints, you must upload a video recording by December 15th which will be considered your final audition.

  • Make sure the sound quality on your video recording is excellent. Re-record a piece if it does not sound clear. Your recordings should be less than 8 months old.
  • You can submit recordings from live performances.
  • We accept avi, mov, mp4 or wmv formats. 
  • Follow the instructions to upload your video by December 15th. Upload times depend on file size and speed of service provider.

Repertoire:

  • The repertoire for on-campus and recorded auditions is the same.
  • String applicants: If you want to be considered for the Lloyd Carr-Harris (LCH) String Scholarship but you are not attending on-campus audition, include an unedited one-take video recording of a full major concerto (all movements) in addition to the required repertoire.

Audition repertoire

Brass

Focus on chamber music, orchestral or solo repertoire.

  • Prepare 60 minutes of recital material in various styles.

Early Music Instruments

Includes: Baroque Violin, Viola, Cello, Viola da Gamba, Flute, Recorder, Oboe, Early brass, Fortepiano, Harpsichord.

  • Prepare a balanced and stylistically diversified 60-minute program.
  • Represent the most important styles of the 17th- and/or 18th-century appropriate for your instrument.
  • Include works from the repertoire on which you wish to focus your studies.

Early Music Voice

  • Prepare a balanced 60-minute program, to perform from memory. Represent the major musical periods (Baroque, Renaissance, Medieval), contrasting styles (opera, oratorio, cantata, air de cour, songs), and the four major languages (English, French, German, Italian). Include at least two recitatives and works from the repertoire on which you want to focus your research project.
  • At least 48 hours before your audition, submit a copy of your program and two individual choices of repertoire to the Voice Area Chair (Dominique Labelle). The jury will extract a short program for you to perform as a "mini-recital" at your audition. Afterwards, they may ask to hear other selections from your original program.

Guitar

  • Prepare 60 minutes of recital repertoire, focusing on chamber music or solo performance.
  • Include works relevant to your proposed performance specialization. For example, prepare contemporary works if your focus is on 20th century music, prepare renaissance and baroque works if your specialization is early music, etc.

Harp

Prepare 60 minutes of recital material in various styles.

Organ and Church Music

Select one of the options below:

  • Option 1: Prepare 60 minutes of recital repertoire. Include a major work by J.S. Bach as well as pre-Bach, romantic and contemporary selections. You can choose between a mechanical action or electric action instrument. You can also present on two different instruments. You can use a registration assistant at the mechanical action console, but you should do your own registration at the electric console.
  • Option 2: Focus on one specialized part of the organ repertoire, such as North German Baroque, French romantic music or a specific composer, such as Bach or Messiaen. In this case, you can choose to only perform works that are consistent with your desired specialization.

Percussion

You must demonstrate ability on all basic percussion instruments, i.e., timpani, keyboard percussion, snare drum, multiple percussion. You can submit multiple recordings of percussion solos to the Percussion Area Chair in advance of your live audition.

Choose one of the following options:

  • Chamber music: Prepare 30 minutes of solo recital repertoire plus 30 minutes of mixed chamber music (recording). Prepare to sight-read.
  • Orchestral repertoire (percussion): Prepare 30 minutes of solo recital repertoire plus 30 minutes of mixed orchestral excerpts. Prepare to sight-read.  
  • Orchestral repertoire (timpani): Prepare 20 minutes of solo recital repertoire plus 40 minutes of mixed orchestral excerpts for timpani. Prepare to sight-read. 
  • Solo: Prepare 60 minutes of solo recital material in various styles. 

Collaborative Piano

  • Prepare for a 30 minute interview and to sight-read.
  • Prepare 15-20 minutes of music of your choice, from the solo piano repertoire. Present repertoire from one or two composers.  Memorization is optional.
  • Prepare selections from all three concentrations listed below, or choose two of the instrumental pieces plus the vocal or opera repertoire. If you want to work primarily with singers, you must include all three concentrations.

Collaborative concentrations:

  • Instrumental: A violinist will be provided by the School. Prepare the piano part from one (or two) of the following excerpts:
    • Beethoven, Violin Sonata No. 7, c minor, 1st movement, Allegro con brio  
    • Brahms, Violin Sonata No. 2 in A, Op. 100, 1st movement, Allegro amabile
    • Franck, Violin Sonata in A, 2nd movement, Allegro
  • Vocal: A singer will be provided by the School. Prepare the following songs:
    • Franz Schubert, Ganymed
    • Johannes Brahms, Meine Liebe ist grün
    • Claude Debussy, Il pleure dans mon coeur
    • Richard Strauss, Allerseelen
    • Samuel Barber, St. Ita's Vision
  • Opera: The operatic excerpts should be sung in the original language while playing the orchestral reduction from any standard piano/vocal score. Prepare:
    • Any Aria from Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro and Sein wir wieder gut” from Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos, or
    • “Here I Stand” from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress

Piano

  • Prepare a 60 minute recital program.
  • Include works from major composers covering a range of styles, genres, and periods , with at least one piece from the 19th century (e.g., Mendelssohn, Chopin, Schumann, Liszt, Brahms).
  • Feature music from the repertoire area in which you wish to focus your major performance.
  • The panel may choose to hear complete works and/or excerpts.
  • Memorization is required except for the pieces written after 1960.

Strings

Cello

  • Prepare a 60-minute program of repertoire
  • Include one study by either Servais or Piatti.
  • Include the prelude and two other contrasting movements of a Suite by J.S. Bach.
  • Include a fast and a slow movement from any classical, romantic or modern concerto.
  • Fill the remaining time with repertoire of your choice.
  • Concerto and unaccompanied Bach to be played from memory.

Double Bass

  • Prepare a 60-minute program of repertoire
  • Include one movement from a Suite by J.S. Bach.
  • Include a concerto.
  • Include a contemporary work.
  • Include 4 orchestral excerpts.
  • Fill the remaining time with repertoire of your choice.

Viola

  • Prepare a 60-minute program of repertoire.
  • Include one caprice by Campagnoli.
  • Include the prelude and two other contrasting movements of an unaccompanied Suite by J.S. Bach.
  • Include a fast and a slow movement from a major concerto.
  • Fill the remaining time with repertoire of your choice.
  • Concerto and unaccompanied Bach to be played from memory.

Violin

  • Prepare a 60-minute program of repertoire.
  • Include a complete major concerto from the 19th or 20th century.
  • Include two contrasting movements from the solo works by J.S. Bach.
  • Include a Paganini caprice.
  • Fill the remaining time with repertoire of your choice.
  • Concerto, unaccompanied Bach and Paganini to be played from memory.

Voice (Opera and Voice)

For your live audition:

  • Prepare a balanced 60-minute program of repertoire, to perform from memory. Represent the major musical periods, contrasting styles, and the four major languages (English, French, German and Italian). Include at least one operatic aria as well as a recitative and aria from Opera, Oratorio or Cantata (1600-1800). 
  • At least one week before your audition, submit a copy of your program (including timing of each piece) and two individual choices of repertoire to the Voice Area Chair (Dominque Labelle). The jury will extract a short program for you to perform as a 'mini-recital' at your audition. Afterwards, they may ask to hear other selections from your long program.

Woodwinds

Flute

All Graduate Programs:

  • Mozart Concerto in G or D Major, complete, with cadenzas
  • Bach Sonata in E Minor, 1st and 2nd Movements
  • Prokofiev Sonata 1st Movement
    AND
    Choose between A or B

    A. Any piece from Flute Music by French Composers or Dutilleux Sonatine
    and
    Piece of candidate’s choice 5 minutes

    B. Orchestral Excerpts (Orchestral Excerpts for Flute with Piano Accompaniment, Jeanne Baxtresser & Martha Rearick, Theodore Presser Company):
  • Ravel, Maurice: Daphnis et Chloé Suite no. 2
  • Debussy, Claude: Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune, L. 86
  • Beethoven, Ludwig van: Leonore Overture no. 3, op. 72
  • Bach, Johann Sebastian: Aus Liebe will mein Heiland sterben, Soprano aria from St. Matthew Passion, BWV 244
  • Mendelssohn, Felix Bartholdy: Symphony no. 4, “Italian”, op. 90
  • Brahms, Johannes: Symphony no. 4, op. 98
  • Stravinsky, Igor: Firebird Suite (1919 version)
  • Stravinsky, Igor: Petrouchka (1947 revised edition)
 

All other woodwind instruments:

  • Prepare 60 minutes of recital material in various styles.

The audition panel will select, from your list of repertoire, the material for you to perform in the 20 to 30 minute audition.