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Folk and Bluegrass Studies Audition Requirements

All applicants will submit the following application materials based on their desired degree program. For instrument-specific audition requirements, please scroll down or use these buttons to navigate to the appropriate instrument.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS FOR UNDERGRADUATE DEGREE PROGRAMS

  • Complete the UNC Undergraduate Application
  • After submitting your application, upload and complete the following School of Music Checklist Items in your Bear App Portal
    • School of Music Supplementary Application, which includes
      • Virtual Interview Scheduling
      • Musical Experience
      • Contact information for 2 music recommenders
    • Statement of Goals - a brief statement about your career aspirations. Please upload a .pdf document.
    • Video Audition
      • PLEASE NOTE: all audition videos must be upload to the portfolio section of your portal at the same time. After saving your submission, you will no longer have access to the portfolio. If at any time you need to edit your portfolio contents, please email Music@unco.edu

Note: Accompanists are not required, but the applicant may provide one.


Fiddle

Audition Requirements for All Degrees:

  • Solo playing: Perform two contrasting solo tunes. Demonstrate different styles and original compositions if applicable.
  • Ensemble playing: Play a traditional bluegrass tune and/or song along with a recording. Do your best to kick off a tune, take a solo, and play under a solo or singing; i.e. fills, chopping, and padding.
  • Reading and Aural Skills: Sight read a tune, then play backing with chords from a chart. Repeat short phrases back to demonstrate ability to learn by ear.

Contact:

music@unco.edu


Mandolin

Audition Requirements for All Degrees:

  • Solo Playing:  Perform at least one solo piece in a bluegrass style.
  • Ensemble Playing: Demonstrate the basic abilities required when playing mandolin in a bluegrass band.  Specifically: the ability to kick off a song instrumentally; competency with “chop chord” shapes and their use; playing a lead solo; playing “back up” behind a vocalist; and singing lead or harmony parts.
  • Reading and Aural Skills:  Sight read a tune, then play backing with chords from a chart. Repeat short phrases back to demonstrate ability to learn by ear.

Contact:

music@unco.edu


Banjo

Audition Requirements for All Degrees:

  • Solo Playing:  Perform at least one solo piece in a bluegrass style.
  • Ensemble playing: Demonstrate the basic abilities required when playing banjo in a bluegrass band. Specifically: the ability to kick off a song instrumentally, to follow a kick off, and rhythm playing.
  • Reading and Aural Skills:  Sight read a tune and/or play backing with chords from a chart (if able). Repeat short phrases back to demonstrate ability to learn by ear.

Contact:

music@unco.edu


Guitar

Audition Requirements for All Degrees:

  • Solo playing: Perform at least one fiddle tune or other instrumental piece in a bluegrass style.
  • Ensemble playing: Demonstrate the basic abilities required when playing guitar in a bluegrass band.  Specifically: the ability to kick off a song instrumentally, to follow a kick off, and rhythm playing.
  • Reading and Aural Skills:  Sight read a tune and/or play backing with chords from a chart (if able). Repeat short phrases back to demonstrate ability to learn by ear.

Contact:

music@unco.edu


Bass

Audition Requirements for All Degrees:

  • Perform at least two contrasting bluegrass tunes and/or songs. Demonstrate vocal abilities with lead or backup singing if able.
  • Play a selection of scales (major and minor).
  • Reading and Aural Skills:  Demonstrate ability to play by following a chart. Repeat short phrases back to demonstrate ability to learn by ear.

Contact:

music@unco.edu