College of Arts and Sciences
Program Summary

FAQ

  • FAQs

    Q. I’m interested in music at Seattle University. What do you offer?
    A. We offer a Bachelor of Music in String Performance with an emphasis in solo and chamber music performance. This degree program is only offered to students who study violin, viola, violoncello or double bass. We also offer a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Arts with an emphasis in music and a minor in music. We also offer several ensembles that students may participate in including chamber music class, jazz band and five choirs: Women’s Chorale, Men’s Chorale, Consort Singers and Chamber Singers. Students may also take private lessons in violin, viola, violoncello, double bass, piano, voice or guitar. Students who wish to major in Fine Arts with the music emphasis or minor in music must study one of the instruments that we offer at Seattle University.

    Q. I’m already a student at Seattle University and would like to change my major to music. What do I need to do?
    A. You must notify the Fine Arts Department of your intention to switch to music by either stopping by the office or by emailing music@seattleu.edu and you must pass an audition (for Bachelor of Music Degree in String Performance only). If you intend to major in Fine Arts with an emphasis in music, no audition is necessary. However, if you intend to major in String Performance, you must complete an audition form that must be turned into the Director of Chamber and Instrumental Music.

    Q. I currently attend another university and would like to transfer into the to Seattle University to major in string performance. Which classes can I take that will transfer?
    A. Transferring into music is not a clear-cut process. If you are currently a music major, continue with the music classes you are taking. If you are not a current music major, it is suggested that you wait to begin taking music classes until you transfer to SU. Taking general academic requirements (math, science, English, etc.) prior to your arrival at SU is a more productive use of your time. To best understand how non-music courses might transfer to SU, contact the Seattle University Office of Admissions at 206.296.2000. The Admissions Office is unable to guarantee the transferability of any credit until an individual is offered admission, but they can likely give you a general idea as to what academic courses at your current institution would apply to the SU Bachelor of Music degree.

    Q. I am interested in becoming a String Performance major in the Bachelor of Music program. What do I have to do to become one?
    A. You must indicate on your admission application that you are interested in majoring in String Performance. After your application is received, the Music Division office will contact you to set up an audition. You must prepare music to audition with before a jury panel or by submitting a recording. You must successfully pass the audition and gain admission from the university to be admitted into the program.

    Q. Can I take a lesson with an instructor at SU before I apply for the Bachelor of Music program?
    A. The string faculty members may meet with prospective students according to availability. If you are interested in having a lesson with a particular faculty member, please contact the Music Division office at (206) 296.2699 or email: music@seattleu.edu who will assist you in contacting and arranging a time with them.

    Q. What if I can’t come to the Bachelor of Music audition?
    A. If you live more than 500 miles from Seattle, you may submit a CD or DVD instead of performing a live audition. All audition recordings must be received in the office by Saturday, March 6, 2010.

    Q. Is the Bachelor of Music audition more important than academics?
    A. The audition is equally as important as academics. You must successfully pass the audition and no admissions decision will be made without the receipt and review of the transcripts, test results and supporting materials.

    Q. Are there scholarships available?
    A. Students who perform in the choirs are eligible for scholarships. Scholarships are also awarded to students in the Bachelor of Music in String Performance program. There is also a String Department assistantship offered once a year. Scholarships are awarded on the basis of musical ability, financial need and musical needs of the division.

    Q. What can people do with a music degree?
    A. The Bachelor of Music in String Performance trains students to become great performers, but also to gain professional and entrepreneurial skills to make them marketable in a competitive music world. Students who graduate with a music degree in String Performance will also be equipped with the necessary skills to audition for a performance graduate program. The jobs that exist for students with a degree in music include teaching, becoming a soloist, chamber or orchestral musician.

    Q. Why don’t you have an orchestra at SU?
    A. The music program at SU is small and much focused on solo and chamber music ensembles. However, we do have orchestral internships available for music majors who are interested in performing with a larger ensemble. Students may audition at the beginning of the year for internships through Orchestra Seattle and Auburn Symphony. Students have the opportunity to work in a professional music setting with a conductor and perform four to six concerts per year.

    Q. I’m interested in and have a passion for music, but I have very little training and do not read music. Can I apply as a music major?
    A. Probably not. Most students who apply as music majors (Bachelor of Music in String Performance or Bachelor of Arts in Fine Arts with an emphasis in music) have many years of experience in their instrument (or voice) and in ensemble performance during their middle or high school years. It is not impossible to apply and pass an audition as a string performance major without this background, but it is very rare. It would be best to gain experience and training privately before attempting to audition as a music major.

    Q. I want to minor in music. What should I do?
    A. You should consult Dr. Quinton Morris (instrumental) or Joy Sherman (vocal) to set up an appointment to find out the classes you need in order to minor in music. There are 30 credits of Music Theory, Ear Training, private lessons, ensembles and Music History that are taken to fulfill the minor requirements.

    Q. I’ve already had some Music Theory and Aural “Ear Training” training. Is there a way for me to test out of some of the classes?
    A. Yes, a placement exam will be given at the beginning of the academic year to determine if you pass out of the Music Theory/Ear Training courses. If you do not pass out of the course, you will be placed in the appropriate Music Theory and Ear Training courses. Students who have completed the Advanced Placement Music Theory Exam with a grade 3 or higher will receive the appropriate credit. Please note that even if you test out of a particular class, you must make up that credit by adding additional music electives, private lessons or ensembles

    Q. Is it necessary for me to take Music Theory and Ear Training at the same time?
    A. Yes it is. The Music Theory and Ear Training classes are offered as a lecture and lab sequence, which coincide with each other.

    Q. Is there a piano proficiency exam for BM students who have college credit in piano?
    A. Yes, there is a piano proficiency exam that must be arranged with the professor.