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Due to the very high number of applicants and the small number of places offered for admission each year, gaining a place as a composition major at Peabody is not easy. Like all students auditioning at Peabody, applicants will be required to take examinations in music theory and ear training. Applicants to the department of composition will be expected to do well in these areas, at a level commensurate with the degree program sought. Below are other generalized core expectations for the degree programs in composition at Peabody:

B.M.

Auditioning prospective B.M. students should be fully conversant in the reading and writing of music. B.M. candidates are expected to demonstrate some knowledge of 20th Century music, including post-war music (music written since 1945). Scores consisting of a variety of instrumentations are strongly encouraged. For B.M. candidates however, an orchestral score is not required. Three scores – but no more than three – should be uploaded to the application, along with all recordings.  Please be sure to clearly indicate the names of the compositions. Acoustic performances are strongly encouraged but not required. MIDI performances are acceptable. Instrumental proficiency (the applicant’s ability to play an instrument) is not required, but strongly encouraged.

M.M.

Auditioning prospective M.M. students are expected to demonstrate a solid overview of contemporary music, including post-war music (music written since 1945). Three scores – but no more than three – should be uploaded to the application. Scores consisting of a variety of instrumentations are required. At least one work should be for large ensemble (at least 10 players). All recordings should also be uploaded to the application, with the names of the compositions clearly indicated. At least one of the submitted scores must be represented by an acoustic (non-MIDI) recording. Instrumental proficiency is not required, but strongly encouraged.

D.M.A.

Auditioning prospective D.M.A. students are expected to demonstrate their ability to be conversant in all aspects of contemporary music through the present-day. Three scores – but no more than three – should be uploaded to the application. Scores consisting of a variety of instrumentations are required. At least one work must be composed for orchestra. All recordings should also be uploaded to the application, with the names of the compositions clearly indicated. At least two of the submitted scores must be represented by acoustic (non-MIDI) recordings. Instrumental proficiency is not required, but strongly encouraged.

Peabody’s Admissions Office has prepared checklists with detailed instructions for applying to the B.M., M.M., and D.M.A. degree programs. Please take the time to familiarize yourself with your degree’s checklist.

All application materials must be received by December 1. The deadline for applying for financial aid is March 1. Decision results will be mailed on April 1.

Please direct any questions about the application process or application requirements to the Admissions Office at (667) 208-6600.