Are there any prerequisites for performance study?
Because the Department believes students enrolled in individual performance studies should have a thorough knowledge of the rudiments of music, enrollment for lessons is contingent on successful completion of, or exemption from, MUS100, regardless of whether a student's home institution is Mount Holyoke or one of the other colleges in our consortium.
STEPS TOWARD INITIAL ENROLLMENT IN PERFORMANCE STUDY
All Mount Holyoke and Five College students must do the following in order to qualify for MUS151 Individual Performance Study:
1. Take the MUS100 Exemption Exam.
The Department requires all performance students to have a thorough knowledge of the rudiments of music found in the syllabus for MUS100.
For the Exam schedule and a description of the contents of written and aural portions of the Exam, please see:
The following pages contain materials which may be useful for those wishing to refresh their understanding of written theory material:
And the following links can be used to practice identifying intervals and triads for the aural portion of the Exam:
In order to pass the Exam, students must achieve EITHER (1) minimum scores of 75% on both the written and aural portions, OR (2) a minimum score of 80% on the written and aural portions combined.
2. Take an audition/interview with department faculty during the first week of classes.
Students wishing to take private performance study on any instrument sign up for an audition on the appropriate online form. Auditions are held the first week of each semester. Please check the schedule for the dates and times that your instrument will be heard.
What should I be prepared to do when I come for an audition?
Piano: (1) play a prepared piece which represents your level of musicianship and ability; (2) sight-read some brief passages.
Voice and all other instruments: perform a short prepared piece which represents your level of musicianship and ability.
3. Based on the results of the audition/interviews, register for MUS151 Individual Performance Study and, if required, MUS100 Rudiments of Music or MUS131 Basic Musicianship.
Students who are accepted for lessons and evaluated in their audition as beginners on their instrument or voice must satisfy the music theory requirement in one of the following three ways:
pass the MUS100 Exemption Exam prior to enrollment in performance study; OR
enroll concurrently with their first semester of performance study in the 2-credit MUS100 Rudiments of Music (Monday, Wednesday, Friday only, 9:00 – 9:50am) OR the 4-credit MUS131 Basic Musicianship (Monday through Friday, 9:00 – 9:50am); OR
enroll concurrently with their first semester of performance study in a Five College course equivalent to MUS100 or MUS131.
Students who are accepted for lessons and evaluated in their audition as experienced players or singers (i.e., having had previous instrumental or vocal training) may, after taking the MUS100 Exemption Exam and obtaining permission of the instructor, enroll in MUS151 Individual Performance Study for one semester without satisfying the rudiments of music requirement. Continued performance study beyond this single semester grace period requires satisfying the rudiments requirement either through exemption or concurrent enrollment in MUS100 or MUS131.