Audition Information

We require auditions (or consent of director) for entrance into the jazz concentration program and within our ensembles.

Undergraduate and Graduate Jazz Concentration Program Auditions

Prepare one composition in each category from the following lists.
instrumentalists || vocalists
Vocalists: For “Falling Leaves,” choose your own key, bring in charts in that key for piano/keys, bass and drums. All vocalists: Head down plus one chorus of scat.

Ensemble and Combo Auditions


Jazz ensembles (large) and jazz combo (chamber) performance groups are open to all university students by audition or consent of director. Existing jazz performance group opportunities in the School of Music include:

  • ECU Jazz Ensemble (A), using traditional and contemporary “Big Band” instrumentation
  • Tues/Thurs Jazz Band (Jazz Ensemble-(B), which serves as a performing lab band
  • Contemporary Ensemble, chamber ensemble of 8 to 10 members focusing on Be-Bop and contemporary era jazz styles
  • Directed combos, focusing on directed study with faculty and the application of specific performance practices including jazz repertoire.

Please refer to catalog for additional jazz course offerings and requirements.

Auditions for Section Chairs

Auditions will be held the first week of each semester. Audition music will be made available by the jazz faculty during the first week of each semester but not before. The auditioning student should demonstrate the ability to perform the prepared music focusing on jazz styles and characteristics. The student will also be required to sight-read. (No improvisation required for these chairs)

Auditions for Solo Jazz Chairs

Auditions will be held for each ensemble/combo at a later date to be determined by each ensemble director. (Please notify the Director of Jazz Studies of interest in a Solo Jazz Chair audition during the Section Chair audition.) (Improvisation required) – The auditioning student should demonstrate the ability to perform the head to selected jazz compositions. After performing the head, the student should demonstrate the ability to improvise over the preexisting standard and altered chord changes. All auditions should focus on jazz stylistic characteristics and must be performed from memory.

Prepare one composition in each category from the following lists:

instrumentalists || vocalists

Jazz Studies

(Audition & Declaration)

The Upper Division Qualifying Exam is to be taken after completion of eight (8) semester hours of traditional applied lessons. In addition to the Sophomore Hearing, a separate jury taken after completion of four (4) semester hours of jazz applied lessons is required to enter the Jazz Studies concentration. The additional jury will be of 20-minute duration held during the spring semester of the sophomore year or completion of lower level theory courses. Upon passing this jury, the student will be accepted into the ECU Jazz concentration. If the student does not pass this jury on the first attempt, the student may retake the jury prior to the date mandated by the university to remove an incomplete grade (the following semester.) The student may not take the jury more than twice. The jury will be called the Jazz Studies Upper Divisional Exam, with format as follows:

  • 20 minute jury for a minimum of 3 ECU Jazz Studies faculty
  • sign-up times posted 3 weeks in advance of jury week
  • 2 compositions, one chosen by faculty from a pre-determined list
  • the second to be chosen by the student

The student will be required to do a recital jury hearing in the semester preceding the scheduled Senior Recital date. Upon passing this jury, the student will be eligible to perform the Senior Recital.