Graduate Auditions

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Your university application will be processed by both the Office of Admissions and Orientation and the Irving S. Gilmore School of Music. After completing your application, Professor David Code, Coordinator of Graduate Studies in Music, will act as the liaison between the Irving S. Gilmore School of Music and the graduate admissions office. International students may obtain admissions information through the Office of International Student and Scholar Services. If you're not a resident of the United States, be sure and review the Irving S. Gilmore School of Music's Information for international students. 


In addition to completing an application, entrance into the Irving S. Gilmore School of Music requires that you audition for the Piano Area. While most undergraduate students choose to audition at one of the New Student Audition Days, most graduate students set up a separate audition to allow more time for the audition process. For international students, a recorded audition may be considered. Please contact Professor Lori Sims for more detailed information regarding the exact recording requirements. 

Audition Requirements: Graduate piano auditions will consist of a minimum of 30 minutes of music from four different stylistic eras, with one of pieces a large-scale piano work such as a multi-movement sonata.

While a live audition is preferred, if you live more than 300 miles from Kalamazoo, Michigan, submitting video and/or audio files for your studio audition can be an option. 

Entering students will be required to take exams in music history and literature and music theory. Although the results of these exams have no effect on your acceptance into the piano studio, they may ultimately be used in determining your course requirements at WMU. You are encouraged to use the theory and history exam study guides supplied by the Irving S. Gilmore School of Music to assist in your preparation.


A number of funding opportunities exist for entering graduate students. They include:

  • Piano graduate assistantshipGraduate assistantship applications must be submitted by February 15. The application cannot be given consideration unless the student has applied for admission to both the Graduate College and the Irving S. Gilmore School of Music.
  • Piano studio awards: Graduate students auditioning for the piano studio will automatically be considered for a piano studio award.
  • Jazz scholarships: Students auditioning for the Jazz Area will automatically be considered for a jazz award. To be considered, students should expect to play a selection of your choice in 12-bar blues form with two or three improvised choruses to follow, a jazz standard of your choice with improvised choruses, and sight reading of jazz pieces.
  • Obtaining in-state residency—After one year of study at WMU, graduate students may apply for in-state residency by completing an  Application for Resident Classification for University Admissions and/or Fee Purposes. Prior to completing the form, you'll need to make sure that you meet the requirements for residency.