Audition Tech-Tips

Recording Tips:

  • Since the audition video is the only chance for the applicant to be heard, the quality of the recording should be given utmost consideration. The quality of your recording will affect the evaluators’ ability to review and comment. A high-quality video recording is expected.  You should prepare for your audition like any professional audition.
  • Dress for performance. An evening gown and tux are not necessary, but ripped jeans, ball caps and tank-tops are not professional.
  • Consider lighting, framing, and camera placement. Film in a well-lit space and be sure that there is more lighting in front of you rather than from behind.
  • Stay away from clutter; use a simple background. No food, laundry, music, instrument cases, or other distractions should be in the shot.  We recommend using a tripod, stand, or placing a camera on a flat surface while shooting.
  • Place the camera so that you, your instrument, and your full range of motion are in the frame at all times. When using music, be sure the music stand does not block your face, hands, or instrument.
  • Choose a medium distance that shows as much detail as possible, while still allowing the image to be framed as described above. Do not use the zoom function as this makes the image grainy or fuzzy.
  • Try to avoid using “selfie” mode on your devices as it does not allow for a wide enough camera angle.
  • Be aware of the acoustic environment in which you record. Background noise (television noise, other people practicing, dancing, cooking, etc.) and poor sound quality make your recording difficult to evaluate. If you are recording from your phone or tablet, it should be set horizontally. Be sure to set it in Airplane mode or Do Not Disturb mode to avoid interruptions.
  • Review your recording(s) before you submit and check the sound level to ensure the best audio quality. 
  • Only unedited recordings will be accepted and should be in high fidelity stereo. Other than stopping and starting the camera between segments, no editing of the audio or video is permitted.
  • Applicants whose videos show evidence of any cuts, splicing, manipulation of pitch, or other alteration within a performance segment will be subject to disqualification.
  • When recording snare drum, please record in a “dry” non-resonant location. This will allow the details of your playing to be clearly heard. However, a resonant location is very good for recording marimba.

Video Preparation Suggestions


  • Your audition performance is only as good as the quality of the recording. Be sure to submit a high-quality, high-fidelity recording. 

  • Recordings can be of live performances/concerts or a recorded performance for the purpose of the audition.  

  • For optimum sound, all recordings should be in stereo. Any deviation from this standard may result in a loss of sound quality. 

  • Do not use any type of enhancement technique or audio/video editing to change the quality of the live performance. 

  • A link to where your videos are hosted (YouTube, Vimeo, etc.) will be entered into your student profile on

  • At the start of each piece, please state the title (if a multi-movement work please indicate movements being performed) and composer. If the title has an arranger, transcriber, and/or editor, please state that information as well.

  • Application recordings that exceed the maximum length of 20 minutes will not be evaluated beyond the maximum length.