Winds and Brass Performance

Bachelor of Music (BM) or Bachelor of Arts (BA)
Master of Music (MM) or Graduate Certificate (GCRT)
Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)

If you are planning to apply to the Artist Diploma program please follow the audition requirements on the Artist Diploma page.

Applicants to programs in Flute or Clarinet must submit an audition recording to be pre-screened by the faculty. A video recording is preferred for Flute but REQUIRED for Clarinet. (Applicants to all other Winds and Brass programs are not required to submit a pre-screen recording.) The results of this pre-screen will determine whether an applicant will be invited to perform a live audition on the USC campus in Los Angeles.

Note: Recordings will not be accepted via mail or email for this program. Recordings must be submitted online through the “Fall DecisionDesk portal” by the December 1st deadline. Any application not complete by December 1 may be removed from consideration.

To access the Fall portal to submit your recording click on the following link:

USC Thornton Fall DecisionDesk

Please note: Current USC Thornton students applying for a graduate program are not required to submit a prescreen recording, however they must indicate on the application that they are a current Thornton student or they will not automatically be scheduled for a live audition. Current USC students are encouraged to contact Kit Bellamy in the Thornton Admission office with any questions or concerns regarding audition scheduling.


Flute

Audition repertoire for all degrees of application:

  • Prescreen recording – Piano accompaniment is NOT required.
    • Mozart G-Major Concerto – first and second movements, exposition only
    • EITHER the Ibert Concerto (first movement, m. 1 through m. 142 {rehearsal #13}) OR the Nielsen “Concerto” (first movement, m. 1 through m. 70)
    • Anderson: Opus 33, Number 1 (metronome: 120 bpm) – DO NOT PLAY REPEATS, BUT DO PLAY THE DC.
    • The opening solo of Debussy “Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun” AND Mendelssohn “Scherzo” (start at m. 338)
    • B major scale and C-sharp harmonic minor scale (both in two octaves, 16th-note patterns {metronome: 132 bpm} – first slurred, then double-tongued)
  • Live audition
    • Two contrasting movements from the sonata or concerto repertoire (e.g. the first movement of the Mozart G-Major Concerto and the third movement of the Ibert Concerto)
    • Two orchestral excerpts (standard selections preferred)
    • All major and minor scales (two-octave, slurred and double-tongued, ascending and descending)

Clarinet

Audition repertoire for all degrees of application (same for LIVE and PRESCREEN):

  • Three selections representing various stylistic periods of music. These selections should be full-length pieces from the standard solo literature, although excerpts from ensemble literature may also be included. If any of the selections are taken from a multi-movement sonata or concerto, applicants need only prepare one movement of the piece. (Note: Video recording only for prescreen)

Oboe, Bassoon, Saxophone, French Horn, Trumpet, Trombone, Tuba

There is NO prescreen requirements for these programs. The required live audition repertoire for these instruments are as follows:

  • Three selections representing various stylistic periods of music. These selections should be full-length pieces from the standard solo literature, although excerpts from ensemble literature may also be included. If any of the selections are taken from a multi-movement sonata or concerto, applicants need only prepare one movement of the piece.

Additional Information

  • For students auditioning for Oboe, Bassoon, Saxophone, Horn, Trombone, Trumpet, or Tuba, a recent recording may be uploaded to the “Thornton DecisionDesk Portal” in lieu of a live audition if necessary. Video recordings are generally preferred over audio recordings.
  • For students auditioning for Flute or Clarinet (pre-screen programs), s/he may request that a pre-screen recording be considered in lieu of the live audition. It is extremely important to note, however, that only a video recording which includes both the required pre-screen audition repertoire and the required live audition repertoire would be considered in lieu of a live audition. Recordings that do not include the required live audition repertoire will not be considered in lieu of a live audition.

Important note

Undergraduate applications are not accepted for Spring admission to this program unless the student is already enrolled at USC. All applicants for spring admission are also required to submit a recording for pre-screening. Spring applicants will be notified via email regarding their prescreen decision.