To be considered for acceptance into the MM or the DMA in Choral Music, applicants must:
- Submit a prescreening video recording of approximately 15 minutes of a recent choral rehearsal or performance, with the camera focused on the conductor. Excerpts should include contrasting repertoire.
- Submit a repertory list to the “Program-Specific Questions” section of the Graduate College application.
A limited number of applicants are invited to campus. The live audition typically consists of an interview and a conducting audition. The interview includes a conversation about the candidate’s background and aspirations, as well as his or her philosophy of teaching and knowledge of choral repertoire. As part of the interview, candidates will demonstrate proficiency as both a singer (by performing a short art song or aria) and keyboardist (playing a piano work of at least the difficulty of a Bach two-part invention). There will also be an evaluation of the applicant’s aural skills. For the conducting audition, the applicant will work with one of the choral ensembles, conducting a “performance” of a work the choir knows well, and teaching a new work. Both pieces will be assigned.
The Music Admissions Office will send prescreening results around December 15.
About Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts, Choral Music
The Choral Area of the School of Music pursues two parallel missions: performing beautiful choral music and mentoring tomorrow’s choral leaders.
Concerts by the University’s vocal ensembles demonstrate the highest level of artistry and professionalism, in an unusually diverse range of repertoire from Gregorian chant to commissions of new works. Our choirs regularly appear at regional and national choral conventions, tour nationally and internationally, and frequently collaborate with the University of Illinois Symphony Orchestra, Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra, and Sinfonia da Camera, and in staged productions with the Lyric Theatre of Illinois.
Conducting is taught in seminars and weekly private lessons, and students have significant podium time with choral ensembles to hone their craft. Graduate students pursue coursework in choral literature, musicology, and performance practice, along with applied training in voice and orchestral conducting. As part of a world-renowned research university, the School of Music faculty offers first-rate instruction, and student work is supported by one of the nation’s most comprehensive performing arts libraries. Graduates of the program include many of the most influential leaders in the field, including Kenneth Jennings, Joseph Flummerfelt, Chester Alwes, Anton Armstrong, Andre Thomas, Donald Nally, and Craig Hella Johnson.