Audition and Interview
As part of your application to the college, you are required to complete a live audition and interview. An integral part of selecting our entering class is our unique audition and interview experience, designed to help you show your strengths while helping us assess your talent and potential to succeed in Berklee's dynamic environment. Although there is a general format for the audition and interview, each experience is unique--just like you. Berklee considers all applicants for both admission and scholarship through the audition and interview process.
All applicants are strongly encouraged to visit the Boston campus to participate in their audition and interview, tour our facilities, and meet with Berklee faculty, students and staff.
The audition will be approximately 15 minutes long and may consist of the following parts:
- a prepared piece of your choice
- an improvisation over a harmonic vamp, simple-form blues or a standard tune
- a reading selection
- melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic ear training exercises
At the discretion of each audition team, a jam with the faculty and/or technical exercises might be part of your audition. Please refer to the detailed guidelines for further details about each component of the audition.
We recognize it is common for applicants to have imbalances in their playing abilities, and we realize that applicants may not have advanced skills in improvisation, reading or ear training. These are often some of the reasons musicians are applying to Berklee - so that they may develop their musical skills further. Because we take a holistic approach in our evaluation process, each component of the audition helps the audition team assess your overall abilities as a musician and your potential for success at the college level.
Quite often when people think about the application process to Berklee, the focus is placed on the audition as being a primary factor in the admissions decision. Equally important and often a critical factor in the board of admissions deliberations is the interview. The interview provides an important opportunity for applicants to express their goals and aspirations, identify why Berklee is a good fit in the accommodation of meeting those goals, and to share their individual story on what drove them to music, what motivates them, their challenges and strengths, and their potential future contributions to Berklee's dynamic and culturally rich environment.
There are four primary areas of discussion in the interview:
1. Preparation to begin study at Berklee.
- In addition to each candidate's musical preparation to meet the rigors of our curriculum, consideration will be given to your understanding of Berklee's history and mission and your affiliation with Berklee's open and inclusive approach to music, including the self-discipline needed for excellence, the empathy required of music making, and the openness and inquisitiveness essential to creativity.
2. Professional/career goals.
- Why have you chosen music as the primary focus of your college education? What outcomes are expected as a result of your attending Berklee? What career or advanced study options might be available to you after completion of your studies at Berklee?
3. Why Berklee?
- In researching your options for pursuing an education in music, what aspects of the Berklee model are most appealing to you?
4. What will you bring?
- In selecting our entering class, the board of admissions must identify how each admitted student will contribute to the quality of our community. How will you contribute to the Berklee network and improve the quality of the experience for all? The interviewer will key off the information provided on your application for admission as the foundation for your discussion. Come prepared to highlight your strengths and share your creative aspirations.