Piano/Keyboard Audition Information


MEIS offers three piano/keyboard audition track programs: Piano Performance, Music Business - Audition Track, and Recording Arts - Audition Track. The audition requirements listed below are for all three of these piano audition-track options. Piano applicants can choose between auditioning by video or auditioning live. Please read through the audition requirements below and the information about how to audition.

Piano Audition Requirements: 

1) If auditioning by video, please start the video by verbally introducing yourself and describing your music training and background. Please also describe your piano strengths and area where you think you could improve. Also, describe your piano goals.

2) Prepare and perform two pieces of contrasting styles from your choice of these genres: Jazz, Latin, Pop/Rock/R&B, or Classical. One piece should be slower and demonstrate your touch and expressivity on the piano. The other piece should be faster and demonstrate your technique and energy on the piano. In addition (not as a substitute), students are encouraged to perform an original composition. This is not required.

3) Demonstrate major scales with both hands in B, C, Db, and D – two octaves ascending and descending, eighth notes at a tempo of quarter note = 80.

How to submit an audition video:

After recording your audition video per the guidelines listed above, decide how you will submit your video. We offer two platforms for video audition submissions: 1) Through the portfolio section on CU Denver application portal or 2) through our GetAcceptd.com page ($30 fee to submit through Acceptd). 

  • If submitting the video using the CU Denver application portal, either submit the video in the portfolio section when applying to CU Denver or go back into your application portal after you've already applied to upload your video in the portfolio section.
  • If submitting the video through our page on GetAccetpd.com, go to https://app.getacceptd.com/ucdenver. Then choose your Program Group (emphasis area) and Program (instrument). Click “Get Started!”. Follow the registration instructions to create your account and upload your video. Please note that it costs $30 to submit an audition video through Acceptd. 

We try to review audition videos within three weeks of receipt. Applicants will be contacted about next steps. In rare situations faculty may request that applicants conduct a live audition in addition to the video submission.

How to Audition Live:

Our live audition dates are listed on our MEIS applicant webpage hereFaculty member Jonny Sterling conducts the live auditions. To schedule a live audition or get questions answered about the piano audition process, please contact Jonny at jon.sterling@ucdenver.eduPlease let Jonny know on which of our four audition dates you'd like to schedule an audition. He will respond with an audition time and the details. 

Live auditions typically take 20-30 minutes and will take place in the Arts Building on the Auraria Campus. The audition will consist of sight-reading and a short demonstration of the pieces described above. The audition will also be an opportunity for the prospective student to ask questions regarding the program, applied lessons, ensemble placement, etc. Sight-reading will be assessed during the audition using two methods:

  1. Read short grand staff excerpts.
  2. Read a lead sheet (interpreting chord symbols) in two of the following three ways:
    1. as an accompanist for vocals/melodic instruments (not playing the melody on the piano)
    2. as a solo pianist, interpreting chord symbols and the melody
    3. as in a jazz ensemble, playing left hand chords and right hand melody/improvisation

Questions:

Reach out to Jonny Sterling at jon.sterling@ucdenver.edu