All undergraduate applicants must apply to the University of Colorado and complete a College of Music Admission Application. Applications may be obtained online through the Admissions section. Undergraduate auditions will not be scheduled until both applications have been received. Graduate students need only complete the graduate application.
For information about the Vocal Coaching Artist Diploma, visit the Collaborative Piano Audition page.
Voice and Opera - Undergraduate
To apply, you must submit a high-quality video pre-screening recording, without reverb. Prepare this as well as you possibly can. If we need additional material from you, we may invite you to a virtual live audition (in-person or virtual).
Please prepare two contrasting songs that best display your vocal talent.
- One of the selections must be from the classical repertoire, which can include a folk song or a spiritual; the other can be either a second classical song, a musical theater number, or a jazz standard with fully-realized piano accompaniment (no lead sheets or chord symbols).
- Please note that we center our vocal training around the classical and musical theater singing styles. We are not, at the moment, able to offer training in commercial music, solo vocal jazz, or contemporary pop singing.
- If you have a background in a language other than English, please feel free to offer a selection in that language.
- All selections must be performed from memory.
- Sight-singing and pitch-matching may be tested at the live audition.
If you have a repertoire list of previously studied songs, feel free to share it with us. Please choose music that shows your voice to its best advantage; something you like to sing and that you feel comfortable performing. We are listening for vocal quality, expressiveness, musical competence and, above all, potential. Excessively advanced repertoire is neither expected nor desired. Opera arias written after 1800 are discouraged.
You should prepare a brief program of 3-4 songs; the majority of these should be from the classical repertoire. Please also submit a copy of your repertoire list.
All applicants - both Colorado residents and Non-residents alike are required to submit recorded materials, we do strongly recommend, due to high applicant numbers, that you choose to submit on or before December 1. Once recordings have been reviewed, applicants will be notified and instructions will be sent if a live audition (in-person or virtual) is required.
- Avoid extreme close-ups and be sure to include full-body shots. Try to balance the volume of the piano with your singing, but do not sing with a microphone or extra amplification.
- Say your name and the name of the song, monologue or dance before you begin each section.
- When uploading video recordings, separate file uploads are required.
Without all four components, your audition will be considered incomplete and you will not be considered for admission.
- Resumé: Upload a pdf of your full resumé, which includes any training and experience you have had in music, theatre, and dance.
- Voice Video: Prepare two selections of musical theatre repertoire that contrast in style and decade of composition. Each cut may be up to 32 bars each, but should not exceed 60 seconds in length and must be memorized. In addition, please have the entire song available in addition to the 32 bar preparations in case faulty wishes to hear the song in its entirety.
- Monologue Video: Prepare one short monologue. The monologue must be memorized and should be performed in the context of the entire play. The monologue should be no longer than 90 seconds. Choose a monologue that is appropriate for your age and experience. (Be able to discuss the play or material as a whole. You may want to select a monologue from a play, monologue books or other material.
- Dance Video*: Required of all submissions, present a 30-60 second clip of yourself moving/dancing. Your full body should be in view at all times. You may choose a cut from a musical or a dance performance in which you participated, or record something original. Any style is acceptable: musical theatre, ballet, jazz, tap, hip-hop, etc. Wear appropriate dance attire that will show clean line. Dance music may be live or recorded. Optional, for applicants with dance training: Execute a set of plies, tendues, grand battements, and pirouettes. Straightforward, simple exercises are preferred. (side view is best)
*We are committed to finding a diverse group of individuals of varying skill levels in different areas. Some of you may be strong singer/actors who move well, while others may bring extensive dance training. The movement/dance portion of your audition should reflect who you are as a performer. We will accept a wide array of presentations.
Voice and Opera–Graduate
Voice Audition Dates
- January 28 and 29 (live)
Graduate Voice Applicant Requirements
Pre-screening recordings are required for all graduate voice applicants. Recordings will not be reviewed until the online application and supporting materials have been received. Live auditions will be granted to applicants chosen from these recordings. Applicants will be notified of the faculty decision no later than the Friday before December 25.
- The pre-screening recording should contain three to four contrasting pieces of varying styles and languages, with at least one art song on the recording. Please announce your name and selections at the beginning of the recording.
- A comprehensive list of previously studied repertoire
- A comprehensive performance resume, with categories listed by type (e.g. opera, recital, oratorio, musical, young artist program, etc.), and including location and dates. Applicants are required to upload the documents listed above along with their pre-screening recordings to the Graduate Application. The deadline for submission is December 1.
Doctoral & Artist Diploma Applicants
- Three art songs in three different languages
- Two arias from opera and/or oratorio (in any language)
- Any number of additional pieces of the candidate's choice of any genre in any language
- At least one piece must be in English
- Total of at least 20 minutes of music
Please note that the actual audition time may be shorter.
Master of Music Applicants
- Candidates auditioning live must offer five pieces. They must include:
- Three art songs in three different languages
- One aria from an opera or oratorio (in any language)
- One piece of the candidate's choice of any genre in any language
- One of the five pieces must be in English
- An accompanist will be provided for the graduate voice audition, or applicants may choose to use their own accompanist. The latter option is, however, discouraged. You will have the opportunity to rehearse with your accompanist before the audition.
Live auditions are strongly preferred. The voice area offers a weekend devoted to graduate auditions, faculty master classes, and other events which auditioners are urged to attend. However, additional audition times are also available on some Fridays and Saturdays in February. A recorded audition (live performance or studio recording) may be submitted in place of a live audition when a live audition is not possible. Please see the Recorded Audition Guidelines for information on submitting a recording.
A live audition is required to qualify for Teaching Assistantships. Applicants unable to travel for a live audition should contact a member of the faculty directly to discuss possible options.
Please note that while recorded auditions will be given full consideration, the best demonstration of your musical ability is through a live audition.
Graduate Degree Sheets
Audition guidelines for the Artist Diploma in Opera and Solo Vocal Performance are the same as the guidelines for the DMA in Voice Performance. Please see the above.
Pre-Screening Recording Requirements:
One aria and one art song of contrasting styles performed with a singer.
Choose one of the following Mozart arias to play and sing (substitutions upon request):
- “Hai già vinta la causa” from Le nozze di Figaro
- “Temerari, sortite fuori di questo loco... Come scoglio” from Cosi fan tutte
Choose one of the following arias to play. A singer will be provided at the audition.
- “No word from Tom” from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress (complete)
- “Sein wir wieder gut” from Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos
Choose one ensemble to play with a conductor. Be prepared to provide basic cues.
- “Bella figlia dell’amore” quartet from Verdi’s Rigoletto
- Quartet from the 3rd act of Puccini’s La bohème
Choose 3 art songs to play – one each in English, German, and French. A singer will be provided. Be prepared to coach any of these songs in your audition.
Choose the first movement of a standard string sonata to play. An instrumentalist will be provided.
Applicants should indicate their repertoire selections using the online Audition Repertoire Form before Dec. 1.
Please note that we do not offer an Artist Diploma in Solo Piano.