Every student who wishes to enroll in the Precollege Division must perform an entrance audition before a panel of faculty. The applicant must also take theory and ear training placement tests, and placement auditions for orchestra and/or chorus. These placement exams have no bearing on whether or not an applicant is accepted. However, they are a mandatory component of the audition process. Results of the entrance audition will be mailed and/or emailed within three weeks of the audition. Please note: The Precollege Division is not for beginning students on any instrument.
Special Notice: All students attending the Precollege Division must study with a Precollege Division Faculty Member exclusively.
There are two forms required for application to the Precollege Division: 1) Application for Admission and 2) Electives and Ensemble Form. Please note that the entire Application for Admission form must be filled out in total and signed by both parent and student. The Electives and Ensemble Form has two parts: First, the prospective student should select which large ensemble he/she would like to take. This is a mandatory part of the curriculum. The second part is optional, for those who wish to take extra courses in addition to the core courses.
Download the application for Admission & Electives Form
NEW: Prescreening requirements for jazz applicants
The Financial Aid Form is not mandatory but is required if you want to be considered for any financial assistance or scholarship. Financial aid is primarily need-based. Your tax return from the previous year must accompany your Financial Aid Form. Please note: Financial Aid is not available for new incoming students who are in their senior year of high school.
Download the Financial Aid Form
The applicant will be asked to perform two contrasting pieces, and two major and two minor scales and arpeggios of their choice. Voice students should prepare two contrasting songs, one of which must be in English. Piano students may be required to sight-read. Jazz applicants should prepare the jazz audition requirements. The objective is to demonstrate the applicant’s level of proficiency, both musically and technically. Memorization is required for all students, with the exception of woodwinds and brass. The decision of the adjudicating judges is final.
See the Jazz audition requirements
Please note: The Precollege Division is not for beginning students on any instrument.
A student who wishes to study a secondary instrument at the Precollege Division must audition, along with the students auditioning on their primary instruments, for the Precollege faculty at the time of entrance exams. Students studying a secondary instrument are required to take juries and to maintain musical standards similar to those required of students studying a primary instrument.
Auditions for entrance in the fall of 2013 will be held on Saturday, May 18, 2013. Classical call back auditions will be held on Saturday, June 1, 2013. There are no jazz call backs. Accompanists will be provided for voice and violin auditions only. All other students may bring an accompanist, but it is not required or recommended.
Applications for auditions are due postmarked by March 1 of each year. Late applications are accepted with an additional $50 late fee at the discretion of the Precollege Administration.
Senior Select Chorus
Students auditioning for Senior Select Chorus will be asked to sing in a group choral setting at the time of their audition, which will entail some sight-reading. In addition, the student should bring a prepared vocal piece which may be heard at the discretion of the choral directors in attendance. Placement in a chorus is determined by ability and age.
Orchestra auditions are held separately from primary instrument auditions. Assignments to orchestras are made by the Precollege Administration in consultation with conductors, and are based on audition and availability of positions in the orchestra. The criteria for moving up to the next highest orchestra are as follows:
- A student needs to be in an orchestra for at least one year before he/she becomes eligible to audition for the next level orchestra.
- Recommendations for advancement to the next orchestra come solely from the conductor of the current orchestra. Factors for recommendation include:
- Preparedness at rehearsals
- Attentiveness during rehearsals
- Behavior during rehearsals
- Scores on seating auditions throughout the year
- Age-appropriateness for a given orchestra
- Seating auditions for string instruments occur in the fall semester. For woodwind, brass, and percussion instruments, students will be rotated within their sections at the discretion of the conductor.
- Placement decision of the conductors is final.
International students may audition either in person or by private YouTube link (Upload your video to your YouTube account, set it as private and enter username MSMprecollege into the list of Youtube users allowed to view the video.) Please also email the direct Youtube link(s) to email@example.com.
Audio recordings will not be accepted. Please note that no video recording or links will be considered until receipt of application fee.
To be eligible for a student visa, applicants must have a sponsor/guardian residing in the United States who in addition to assuring financial support must also make the necessary arrangements for enrollment in an academic school for general education. It is the academic school that issues the necessary documents for the student visa. To facilitate the processing, the Precollege Division must be provided with the name and address of the sponsor/guardian prior to registration.
Prospective students who are not citizens or residents of the United States must submit the following:
- The completed application form and application fee
- Youtube video link(s) featuring two contrasting pieces, two major and two minor scales and arpeggios
- Name, address, and telephone number of relative/sponsor in the the States
- Name, address, and telephone number of guardian with whom applicant intends to live
- Name, address, and telephone number of academic school (elementary, middle school, or high school) the applicant plans to attend in the United States
- Upon receipt of the items listed above, the Precollege Division will send a letter of acceptance or rejection to the applicant.
Foreign applicants are required to submit an I-20 Form to the United States consulate in their country in order to receive a student visa. Only full-time schools (those that meet Monday through Friday) can issue the I-20 Form. The Manhattan School of Music Precollege Division offers music subjects exclusively and meets on Saturdays only. Therefore, it cannot issue the I-20 Form.