Audition Process


Your Audition Will Include:

  1. Audition on your primary instrument
  2. Theory Assessment
  3. Piano Proficiency Test (optional)


Audition on Your Primary Instrument

All applicants to the Bachelor of Music and the Joint Degrees Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Commerce are required to perform an audition. Applicants may perform a live audition in St. John's or submit an audition video. View audition dates and deadlines here.

Applicants whose repertoire features piano accompaniment are normally expected to perform their auditions with a collaborative pianist. Should circumstances prevent an applicant from performing with a collaborative pianist, contact us to ask for an accommodation.

We encourage repertoire selections by composers from marginalized and under-represented groups. While our Principal Applied Study courses focus primarily on classical training, if an “own choice” selection is listed in the Audition Guidelines for your instrument, you are welcome to perform a piece in a non-classical style (unless otherwise specified).

Audition Guidelines by Instrument

If you have questions about the suggested audition pieces, contact the faculty member that matches your instrument.


Theory Assessment

Applicants to the Bachelor of Music or Joint Degrees program who perform a live audition in St. John's will write the Theory Assessment on the same day as their audition. Applicants to the Bachelor of Music or Joint Degrees program who submit an audition video will write the Theory Assessment from their home location. Results on the Theory Assessment inform our admissions decisions and help us place students in the appropriate theory class for their first year.

The Theory Assessment is designed to measure comprehension, accuracy, and facility across a wide range of basic theoretical concepts. We are looking for instant and accurate recall of such constructs as:

  • scales
  • key signatures
  • rhythmic notation
  • meter
  • simple and compound intervals
  • triads - major, minor, diminished and augmented
  • seventh chords
  • simple roman numeral analysis

The aural dictation component of the test demonstrates a dimension of music literacy. You will be asked to:

  • Identify harmonic or melodic intervals within the range of an octave.
  • Recognize major, minor, diminished and augmented triads, and dominant seventh (major-minor seventh) chords.
  • Detect errors in both rhythmic and melodic writing.

Applicants are exempt from writing the Theory Assessment if they have completed RCM Theory Level 8ABRSM Grade 5 Theory, or the AP Music Theory Exam (with a score of 5) within the last two years. Please email a copy of your certificate to


Piano Proficiency Test (optional)

The Piano Proficiency Test is not an entrance requirement, although applicants may choose to play it as part of their audition if they like.

The Piano Proficiency Test assesses students' basic keyboard skills. It is administered in September and February of each year. Successful completion of the test is a prerequisite for several required second-year Music program courses.

Students whose principal applied study is piano or organ are exempt from playing the Piano Proficiency Test.


  1. Two contrasting pieces of your own choice, equivalent in difficulty to RCM Grade 2 or higher.
  2. Scales:
    • C, Eb, and D major
    • A, C, and B harmonic minor
    • All scales to be played two octaves, ascending and descending
    • Play scales hands together, hands one octave apart
  3. Triads:
    • C, Eb, and D major
    • A, C, and B minor
    • Triads are to be played solid and broken, in root position, 1st inversion, and 2nd inversion
    • Play triads hands together, hands one octave apart
    • Sight reading


    Questions? Contact