Precollege Admissions & Scholarship


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 ensembles. 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 available on the Precollege Admissions portal within three weeks of the audition.

- The Precollege Division is not for beginning students on any instrument.

- All students attending the Precollege Division must study with a Precollege Division Faculty Member exclusively.



To apply to the Precollege Division, the online Application for Admission must be completed in its entirety and submitted with the PayPal application fee.
The online application will be available after December 1st.


The Scholarship Application is not mandatory but is required if you would like to be considered for any financial assistance. Scholarship is need-based and merit-driven. Scholarship is not available for new incoming students who are in their senior year of high school. Scholarship Application due May 1.

Download the Scholarship Application


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. Accompanists will be provided for voice and violin auditions only. All other students may bring an accompanist, but it is not required. The decision of the adjudicating judges is final. Applicants will be asked to perform the following:

  • Piano and Strings: three contrasting pieces, and two major and two minor scales and arpeggios of their choice. Piano students may be required to sight-read.
  • Woodwind, Brass, Percussion, and Organ: two contrasting pieces, and two major and two minor scales and arpeggios of their choice. Clarinet students may be required to sight-read.
  • Voice: three contrasting songs, one of which must be in English.
  • Composition: three contrasting pieces in PDF format sent to
  • Jazz: Jazz applicants should prepare the jazz audition requirements.

Prescreening materials are required from the following Precollege applicants
by April 1:

  • Jazz Guitar
  • Jazz Piano
  • Jazz Drums
  • Jazz Woodwind Instruments

More information regarding prescreening requirements can be found on the admissions portal.  

Secondary Instrument

A student who wishes to study a secondary instrument at the Precollege Division must apply and audition on the secondary instrument. 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.

Audition Date

Auditions for entrance in the fall of 2018 will be held on Saturday, May 19, 2018. Classical callback auditions will be held on Saturday, June 2, 2018. There are no jazz callback auditions.


  • March 1 — Preferred Deadline — $75 application fee

  • After March 1 — $125 application fee — applications are considered on a case-by-case basis

Callback Auditions

Callback auditions may include the following:

Chamber Music (for pianists only)

Chamber Music auditions are for assessing sight reading ability. 

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 placement decision is final. 

Vocal Ensembles (Opera Workshop and Musical Theatre)

Students auditioning for a vocal ensemble will be asked to sing two contrasting pieces at the time of their auditions.  The objective is to demonstrate the applicant's level of proficiency, both musically and technically, in singing standard repertoire. Students will be placed by audition. A placement is not guaranteed.

International Students

International students should audition in person. If you are unable to audition in person, please contact the Administrative Director, Tiffany Bizup, at

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 online application form and application fee
  • 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 notification 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.