Department of Music

Current Students

Major Ensembles

  • Chamber Choir
  • Guitar Orchestra
  • Jazz Ensemble
  • Marching Captains
  • Men's Chorus
  • Opera CNU
  • Wind Ensemble
  • Women's Chorus
  • University Band
  • University Orchestra

Chamber Ensembles

  • Brass Quintet
  • Clarinet Quartet
  • Flute Choir
  • Horn Ensemble
  • Jazz Combo
  • Pep Band
  • Percussion Ensemble
  • Saxophone Quartet
  • Trumpet Ensemble*
  • CNU Voices (choral chamber a cappella)*
  • Uncommon Ground (vocal jazz)*

*Ensembles marked with an asterisk are student-led and not currently offered for credit.

Name Email address Phone number 1/2 hour lesson/rehearsal General recital Jury* Recital hearing Degree recital*
Suzanne Daniel** suziqdaniel@yahoo.com (757) 593-2358 $25 included included included $75 - $100
Dani Emory dani.emory@gmail.com (781) 439-1445 N/A N/A $75 - $175 N/A Junior: $100 - $250
Senior: $200 - $325
Sarah Frook sarah.frook@cnu.edu (703) 963-0997 $20 ($25 for coaching) $25 $25 N/A $150 - $250
Leilani Giles leilani.m.giles@gmail.com (804) 405-6025 $22 ($44/hour) $25 $35 $25 Junior: $200
Senior: $220
Beth Tomassetti elizabeth.tomassetti@cnu.edu (757) 952-5351 $20 $30 - $40 $40 N/A $150 - $200
Ruth Winters ruthwinters@verizon.net (757) 288-5484 $18 - $20 $25 $25 $25 $50***

*Price ranges based on difficulty of repertoire selected and length of recital
**Prices listed in table are for a long term basis. On a short term basis, one rehearsal and a general recital is $25; one rehearsal and a jury is $50; any additional time is $25 per half hour.
***Does not include rehearsal fees (average total with rehearsal fees is $150 - $225).

This program recognizes students who demonstrate exceptional scholarship, musicianship and service. Students must meet the following qualifications to be accepted into the program:

  • Minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher
  • A minimum of 12 credits in music courses and a minimum of 12 credits in non-music courses, all completed with a C- or higher
  • Two letters of recommendation from full-time music faculty who have taught the courses above, one in an academic course and one in a performance course
  • Must be a member of at least one established student music organization or demonstrate equal involvement in non-academic music activities

Additional requirements include:

  • A minimum of 15 hours of department, university and community service each semester while the student is in the program, (a minimum of 50 total hours of service is required)
  • Completion of at least one course in which the student works closely with a music faculty member on a project that results in a major research paper with a grade of B+ or higher
  • Work under the leadership of a music faculty member in prompting, directing or presenting a performance other than one required for the student’s applied music courses
  • Maintaining a minimum grade point average of 3.5 or higher

The Music Major with Distinction honor is awarded only to graduating music majors who earn either the bachelor of arts degree in fine and performing arts with a major in music or the bachelor of music degree.

CNU Graduate School Audition Strategies

College juniors preparing for graduate school auditions know it can be a daunting process. Students can feel overwhelmed by varied requirements and deadlines, and unfamiliarity with the process can result in missed opportunities. Here is a list of strategies and "things to remember" to help make the application and audition process run smoothly.

College or Conservatory?

Similar to your undergraduate experience, graduate-school curriculum can vary widely, depending on what kind of institution and program to which you are applying. Check the school's website and see what courses are required of graduate students.

Application Process

  • Know the school's pre-audition requirements – some schools need a CD, some now ask for a DVD. Compile a list of repertoire each school needs. That list might add up to a sizable repertoire list!
  • Deadlines – do not wait until the week before a deadline to start making an audition CD! Quality recordings are the gateway to a “face to face” audition, and if your CD is poor quality, you might not be given a live audition. Understand it takes at least a half-hour PER piece to get a recording you will be happy with. Your applied instructor should review and approve all audition materials.
  • Headshots – again, take time to acquire a quality headshot by a professional photographer. Understand that a quality headshot can be costly and require a day of your time.
  • Resume – consult with your teacher on how to compile a professional resume. Many singer’s websites have examples of excellent resumes. Consult with your applied teacher.
  • Pick appropriate repertoire – understand you will probably have a different accompanist from your weekly collaborative artist, and some difficult repertoire might not be advisable in those situations.

I got a live audition! Now what?

  • Live auditions are usually held at the relevant institution, unless they have “off site” audition days. This will require travel and hotel expenses. Be mindful of your audition date and time, and check it against your semester calendar. Often auditions are held during that institution’s winter or spring break, not necessarily your break. Get approval for all missed class days.
  • Try to avoid flying on the day of your audition. Traveling is tiring, and airplane travel can dehydrate a performer. Traveling to an unknown city can be stressful, so try to leave at least a day to become familiar with the audition site.
  • Prepare an audition folder – make sure you have at least two copies of all audition materials, including resumes and headshots. Make sure your music is clear and readable by an accompanist. Cuts, tempo changes and omitted sections should be clearly marked and highlighted.
  • Find out if a rehearsal time with your accompanist is possible – many schools make it possible for a separate rehearsal before the audition with your accompanist. This is highly desirable, and will make your audition go much smoother.

Audition Day

  • Get some sleep! Make sure you get plenty of restful sleep, and drink plenty of water – avoid caffeine, which can dehydrate the performer.
  • Arrive early. Make sure you plan for plenty of commuting time to your audition location – an unfamiliar commute can take longer than you expect; don’t add lateness to your already nerve-wracking day.
  • Report early – Find the audition proctor and report in. You might get an update on how the timings of the auditions are going; they might be running an hour behind, or be looking for you to sing a bit early. Be adaptable to any situation.
  • Be confident – you might sing for three expressionless judges, or 15 excited and complimentary panelists. Focus on why you are at the audition and why you make music. The audition committee wants to hear great music and is excited to hear you play. Use this as motivation to make music and sing or play beautifully.

Follow Up

Sometimes, the most important part of the audition process is the follow-up contact. If you have been in touch with a specific instructor or administrator, make sure to send an email, or even better, a handwritten card, expressing your thanks for his or her time and consideration. In a close decision-making process, this can sometimes be the thing that closes the deal for you.

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