Application Materials

USC Application for Admission

All music applicants are required to submit an application for admission to USC, as well as all supporting documents required by the University (e.g. academic transcripts, standardized test scores, etc.). Applicants are urged to contact the USC Office of Admission or visit the USC Admission Website for specific information regarding University admission requirements.

Pre-screen Recording- to be submitted via SlideRoom

Many programs at the USC Thornton School of Music require a prescreen recording to be reviewed by the faculty, followed by an invitation to a select group of applicants to perform a live audition on the USC campus in Los Angeles. Applicants must carefully review the specific requirements for their chosen program to be sure these requirements are met.

Audition

Most programs in the USC Thornton School of Music require a performance audition. Applicants must carefully review the specific audition requirements for their chosen program to be sure these requirements are met. Live auditions are held in January and February on the USC campus in Los Angeles. Please see our “Audition Dates and Policies” page for more details.

Résumé – to be submitted via SlideRoom

The résumé should list musical, professional and academic experience.

Repertoire List – to be submitted via SlideRoom

This list should include works studied and performed. Etudes, scale studies, arias, art songs, chamber music and solo pieces are all examples of what could be included in this list.

Statement of Purpose – to be submitted via SlideRoom

If required for your major, applicants are encouraged to prepare a brief statement of their professional goals, as well as their purpose in applying for the particular program. (All applicants to the Historical Musicology department please see the Historical Musicology Application Requirements page for specific instructions on the Statement of Objectives.)

DMA Introductory Video – to be submitted via SlideRoom

USC Thornton recognizes that DMA graduates are expected not only to be elite performers and scholarly experts in their fields, but also exceptional and versatile teachers, inspiring and innovative leaders, and consummate musicians with strong complementary skills. This is a tall order, and it necessitates a well-honed individualized academic portfolio. To this end, USC Thornton requires every DMA student to declare, in addition to the major field, an academic field and two elective fields, one of which may be a field outside of music. The purpose of this multidisciplinary approach is to support each student’s personal and artistic development in a way that will be well-aligned with her/his professional goals.

As a reflection of the individualized nature of the USC Thornton DMA program, applicants are required to submit (via SlideRoom) a single-take, unedited, and preferably unrehearsed video of no more than four minutes, including a brief personal introduction, a description of professional goals, and an explanation of how pursuing a DMA at USC Thornton will support the pursuit of those goals.

Transcripts

Official transcripts are required from all applicants, and unless otherwise instructed, should be submitted directly to the USC Admission Office. Please visit the USC Admission website for specific information on how to submit official transcripts.

Letters of Recommendation

Undergraduate Applicants- Letters of Recommendation from music recommenders are not required but applicants are welcome to submit 1-3 letters of Recommendation. These letters should be submitted via the SlideRoom portal.
Graduate Applicants- Applicants to some graduate level programs are required to submit one to three letters of recommendation from persons familiar with the applicant’s academic and professional background. These letters should be submitted through the SlideRoom portal.