Seating Placement Auditions

School of Music ensembles are open to any George Mason University student based on passing the seating placement auditions. For questions or concerns regarding auditions, please see area point of contacts below.

  • Bands – Prof. John Kilkenny (jkilken1@gmu.edu)
  • Jazz – Dr. Darden Purcell (dpurcel2@gmu.edu)
  • Strings – Dr. Dennis Layendecker (dlayende@gmu.edu)

If you are interested in participating in one of the ensembles, please print the excerpts below, and sign up for an audition time.  Non-majors from the university community who wish to audition for the Symphonic Band may prepare the excerpts listed below OR a solo/etude of their choice. Voice part-checks will be held during Choral Ensemble meeting times. Students will be expected to arrive outside of the room assigned for their specific instrument at least 10 minutes prior to your audition. You must have your instrument and music out, tuned and ready to perform at this time. A note to winds/brass music majors: Your applied professor may give you different excerpts to prepare for this audition. If that is the case, please bring the excerpts your professor provides.  If not, please prepare the excerpts listed below.

SIGN UP FOR AN AUDITION (Click links below)

AUDITION EXCERPTS

Voice
  • Part-checks will be held during the first week of classes, during ensemble times.

Strings

  • All interested string players university-wide should prepare for symphony orchestra seating auditions on January 22 and 23.  All excerpts below are from Johannes Brahms Symphony No. 1:
  • VIOLINS: Movement I Beginning to Meas. 9; then, Meas. 41 up to Letter B; then Mvmt. IV from Letter G to Meas. 176; finally, from the Violin II part … Letter E to Meas. 186.  VIOLINISTS SHOULD PREPARE BOTH EXCERPTS A and B, and CHOOSE ONE of either C or D … a total of three excerpts. View violin excerpt A, B, C and violin excerpt D.
  • VIOLAS: Movement I Meas. 161 to 189; Mvmt. IV Meas. 61 – 78; BONUS … Mvmt. I Meas. 321 – 343. View viola excerpt A and viola excerpt B and bonus excerpt.
  • CELLI: Movement I Meas. 1 to 9; Meas. 40 – 70; and Meas. 320 – 341. View cello excerpt.
  • CONTRABASS: Movement I Letter E – 4 meas. Before First Ending; Letter G for 12 measures.  Mvmt. II 8 after B to 3 before C. View contrabass excerpt.

Jazz (Instrumental & Vocal) 

  • Instrumental Piece:  Four
  • Instrumentalists:  Play the melody for one chorus and improvise for two choruses. In addition there will be sight-reading on the audition. Please bring your own musical accompaniment/backing track for iPod, Phone or CD player. (Bring adapter if your phone does not have a headphone jack)
  • Vocalists:  Sing one song of your choice (jazz preferred), sight-read a solo musical line and sing a brief tonal melody test. Please bring your own musical accompaniment/backing track for either iPod, Phone or CD player.
  • Sign up for an audition above. If all audition slots are filled, please e-mail Dr. Darden Purcell at dpurcel2@gmu.edu.

Winds and Brass