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Historical Performance

Auditions for entry in September 2022

We intend to hold live in-person auditions in Birmingham where possible, keeping in line with government guidance.

If you live in the United Kingdom and intend to audition in person, please submit an audition recording by the 25th of October 2021 following our audition requirements below.

We will hold your audition recording on file and refer to it if there are changes to government guidance which impact our ability to hold live auditions.

Please submit audition recordings and portfolios to: conservatoire.admissions@bcu.ac.uk.

UK Applicants will also have the option of attending a Virtual Audition instead of a live audition.

International Applicants who are resident outside of the United Kingdom should submit an audition recording within two weeks of applying or attend one of our International Audition Centres.

Undergraduate Audition Requirements

Audition

  • Harpsichord Please perform three pieces (or movements) of different styles and periods, of your own choice. Candidates may also be asked to play scales (ABRSM Grade VIII standard) and sight read as part of the virtual interview.
  • Fortepiano Please perform three pieces (or movements) of different styles and periods of your own choice. Candidates may also be asked to play scales (ABRSM Grade VIII standard) and sight read as part of the virtual interview.
  • Baroque Strings (violin, viola, cello, viol/viola da gamba) Please perform two movements from a late baroque sonata or suite (Bach, Corelli, Handel, etc), and one other contrasting free choice piece (or movement) from the seventeenth or eighteenth century. Transcriptions are acceptable for viola applicants. Candidates may also be asked to play scales (ABRSM Grade VIII standard) and sight read during the virtual interview.
  • Baroque Wind (flute, oboe, bassoon) Please perform two movements from a late baroque sonata or suite (Bach, Corelli, Handel, etc), and one other contrasting free choice piece (or movement) from the seventeenth or eighteenth century. Transcriptions are acceptable for viola applicants. Candidates may also be asked to play scales (ABRSM Grade VIII standard) and sight read during the virtual interview.
  • Recorder Please see Recorder Department page.
  • Plucked Strings (lute, theorbo, archlute) Please perform three pieces (or movements) of different styles and periods of your own choice appropriate to your instrument.

Virtual Interview

As part of your audition we will arrange a virtual interview for you. The panel will be interested to hear you talk about your artistic influences, your inspiration to be a musician and your career objectives.

This is also an opportunity for you to ask the panel questions about your Department and what life will be like as a musician in Birmingham. You may also be asked to play scales and sight read during the virtual interview.

Please visit our Audition Advice page to help you prepare for your virtual audition and interview.

Postgraduate Audition Requirements

Audition

  • Harpsichord Please present a varied programme of about 15 minutes’ duration of contrasting styles/periods. Candidates may also be asked demonstrate ability to play figured bass at sight during the virtual interview.
  • Organ Please present a varied programme of about 15 minutes’ duration.
  • Fortepiano Please present a varied programme of about 15 minutes’ duration of contrasting styles/periods.
  • Early Wind (baroque/classical flute, oboe, bassoon; classical clarinet) Please present a varied programme of about 15 minutes’ duration of contrasting styles/periods.
  • Recorder Please see Recorder Department page.
  • Early Brass (natural/baroque trumpet, natural/hand horn, sackbut/early trombone, cornetto) Please present a varied programme of about 15 minutes’ duration of contrasting styles/periods.
  • Plucked Strings (lute, theorbo, archlute) Please present a varied programme of about 15 minutes’ duration of contrasting styles/periods appropriate to your instrument(s).
  • Early Strings (baroque/classical violin, viola, cello, viola da gamba, bass/violone) Please present a varied programme of about 15 minutes’ duration of contrasting styles/periods appropriate to your instrument(s).

Virtual Interview

As part of your audition we will arrange a virtual interview for you. The panel will be interested to hear you talk about your artistic influences, your inspiration to be a musician and your career objectives.

This is also an opportunity for you to ask the panel questions about your Department and what life will be like as a musician in Birmingham.

Please visit our Audition Advice page to help you prepare for your virtual audition and interview.