Audition Procedures

Jazz Audition Procedures
Students ARE allowed to audition on more than one instrument as long as a registration fee is paid for each instrument


Middle School

Winds & Bass players will be asked to…

  • Play all scales and progressions in the order that they are listed on the scale sheet.  The chromatic scale should be performed straight, not swung.  NEW FOR 2014-2015, all other scales/progressions must be played swung.  Scales will be 20% of the total score.  All Scales will be memorized.
  • Perform the prepared piece in its entirety along with the CD accompaniment.  See below for the solo rotation.  This piece can be found in the books Easy Jazz Conception (Advance Music/Kendor) by Jim Snidero.  The accompaniment for the prepared solo will come from appropriate track of the Jim Snidero series.  The prepared piece will be 40% of the total score.
  • Improvise over two choruses of a B flat blues.  The accompaniment for the improvisation will come from Volume 1 of the Jamey Aebersold series.  Improvisation will be 20% of the total score.  Students will listen to the first chorus, begin their improvisation with the second chorus and finish with the conclusion of the third chorus.
  • Perform one sight reading sample.  The style of the sample will be written in one of the following styles; swing, rock, Latin or funk.  Sight reading will be 20% of the total score.

Piano & Guitar players will be asked to…

  • Play all scales and progressions in the order that they are listed on the scale sheet.  The chromatic scale should be performed straight, not swung.  NEW FOR 2014-2015, all other scales/progressions must be played swung.  Scales will be 20% of the total score. All Scales will be memorized.
  • Perform the prepared piece in its entirety along with the CD accompaniment.  See below for the solo rotation.  This piece can be found in the books Easy Jazz Conception (Advance Music/Kendor) by Jim Snidero.  Students must play the melody (head) for the 1st chorus and play an accompaniment (comp) for the remaining choruses.  The accompaniment for the prepared solo/comp will come from appropriate track of the Jim Snidero series and will include the rhythm section without the melody for the first chorus and with the melody for the remaining choruses.  A copy of this accompaniment track will be available for download from the jazz section website.  The prepared piece will be 40% of the total score.
  • Improvise over two choruses of a B flat blues.  The accompaniment for the improvisation will come from Volume 1 of the Jamey Aebersold series.  Improvisation will be 20% of the total score.  Students will listen to the first chorus, begin their improvisation with the second chorus and finish with the conclusion of the third chorus.
  • Perform one sight reading sample.  The style of the sample will be written in one of the following styles; swing, rock, Latin or funk.  Sight reading will be 20% of the total score.

Drum set players will be asked to…

  • Play grooves and improvisation in the following styles; a medium swing (q = 112) and a funk/rock (q = 100).  The required format for performance will consist of the student playing 4 bars of the groove, 8 bars of improv, and 4 bars of the groove.  A total of 16 measures will be played for each groove.  Style grooves and improvisation will be 40% of the total score.
  • Perform the prepared piece in its entirety along with the CD accompaniment.  See below for the solo rotation.  This piece can be found in the books Easy Jazz Conception (Advance Music/Kendor) by Jim Snidero.  The track for this performance will come from appropriate track of the Jim Snidero series.  The prepared piece will be 40% of the total score.
  • Perform one sight reading sample.  The style of the sample will be written in one of the following styles; swing, rock, Latin or funk.  Sight reading will be 20% of the total score.

High School

Winds & Bass players will be asked to…

  • Play all scales and progressions in the order that they are listed on the scale sheet.  The chromatic scale should be performed straight, not swung.  NEW FOR 2014-2015, all other scales/progressions must be played swung.  Scales will be 20% of the total score. All Scales will be memorized.  Students that wish to be considered for the lead trumpet and bass trombone positions should perform the extended range chromatic scale.
  • Perform the prepared piece in its entirety along with the CD accompaniment.  See below for the solo rotation.  This piece can be found in the books Jazz Conception: 21 Solo Etudes for Jazz Phrasing, Interpretation and Improvisation  (Advance Music/Kendor)  by Jim Snidero.  The accompaniment for the prepared solo will come from appropriate track of the Jim Snidero series.  The prepared piece will be 40% of the total score.
  • Improvise over two choruses of a blues.  The blues will either be a B flat or F blues.  The auditions chairperson will choose which blues is to be performed on the morning of the auditions.  The accompaniment for the improvisation will come from Volume 1 of the Jamey Aebersold series.  Improvisation will be 20% of the total score.  Students will listen to the first chorus, begin their improvisation with the second chorus and finish with the conclusion of the third chorus.
  • Perform one sight reading sample.  The style of the sample will be written in one of the following styles; swing, rock, Latin or funk.  Sight reading will be 20% of the total score.
  • Optional auditions for Lead Trumpet and Bass Trombone- Students who wish to be considered for lead trumpet and bass trombone will have an additional short excerpt to be played with a play-along track.  Both the solo and the track will be on the NCMEA Jazz Section Website.  Go to www.ncmea.net, click on sections, click on jazz education.

Piano & Guitar players will be asked to…

  • Play all scales and progressions in the order that they are listed on the scale sheet.  The chromatic scale should be performed straight, not swung.  NEW FOR 2014-2015, all other scales/progressions must be played swung.  Scales will be 20% of the total score. All Scales will be memorized.
  • Perform the prepared piece in its entirety along with the CD accompaniment.  See below for the solo rotation.  This piece can be found in the books Jazz Conception: 21 Solo Etudes for Jazz Phrasing, Interpretation and Improvisation  (Advance Music/Kendor)  by Jim Snidero.  Students must play the melody (head) for the 1st chorus and play an accompaniment (comp) for the remaining choruses.  The accompaniment for the prepared solo/comp will come from appropriate track of the Jim Snidero series and will include the rhythm section without the melody for the first chorus and with the melody for the remaining choruses.  A copy of this accompaniment track will be available for download from the jazz section website.  The prepared piece will be 40% of the total score.
  • Improvise over two choruses of a blues.  The blues will either be a B flat or F blues.  The auditions chairperson will choose which blues is to be performed on the morning of the auditions.  The accompaniment for the improvisation will come from Volume 1 of the Jamey Aebersold series.  Improvisation will be 20% of the total score.   Students will listen to the first chorus, begin their improvisation with the second chorus and finish with the conclusion of the third chorus.
  • Perform one sight reading sample.  The style of the sample will be written in one of the following styles; swing, rock, Latin or funk.  Sight reading will be 20% of the total score.

Drum set players will be asked to…

  • Play grooves and improvisation in the following styles; a medium swing (♩ = 112), bossa (♩ = 132) and a funk/rock (♩ = 100). The required format for performance will consist of the student playing 4 bars of the groove, 8 bars of improv, and 4 bars of the groove. A total of 16 measures will be played for each groove. Style grooves and improvisation will be 40% of the total score.
  • Perform the prepared piece in its entirety along with the CD accompaniment. See below for the solo rotation. This piece can be found in the books Jazz Conception: 21 Solo Etudes for Jazz Phrasing, Interpretation and Improvisation (Advance Music/Kendor) by Jim Snidero. The track for this performance will come from appropriate track of the Jim Snidero series. The prepared piece will be 40% of the total score.
  • Perform one sight reading sample. The style of the sample will be written in one of the following styles; swing, rock, Latin or funk. Sight reading will be 20% of the total score.

Jazz Audition Materials


Middle School

1. Prepared Pieces – from Easy Jazz Conception (Advance Music/Kendor) by Jim Snidero

  • Alto Sax #14760
  • Tenor Sax #14761
  • Baritone Sax #14773
  • Trumpet #14762
  • Trombone #14763
  • Drum set #14769
  • Bass #14768
  • Piano #14767
  • Guitar #14766

Solo Rotation

  • Morning Calm – 2015-16
  • So Long Birdie – 2016-17
  • Basie’s Blues – 2017-18

2. Scales – print from Jazz Website.

3. Improvisation – B Flat Blues from Track 7 of “How to Play Jazz and Improvise” by Jamey Aebersold. The appropriate chord changes are in different spots in the book according to your instrument.


High School

1. Prepared Pieces – from Jazz Conception: 21 Solo Etudes for Jazz Phrasing, Interpretation and Improvisation (Advance Music/Kendor) by Jim Snidero

  • Alto/Baritone Sax #14720
  • Tenor Sax #14721
  • Trumpet #14722
  • Trombone #14723
  • Guitar #14726
  • Piano Comping #14739 AND Piano #14727
  • Bass Lines, #14736 DO NOT ORDER BASS #14728
  • Drums #14729

Solo Rotation

  • Proxy – 2015-2016
  • Father Song – 2016-2017
  • A Doll – 2017-2018
  • Total Blues – 2018-2019

2. Scales – print from Jazz Website.

3. Improvisation – B Flat Blues from Track 7 of “How to Play Jazz and Improvise” or F Blues from Track 8 of “How to Play Jazz and Improvise” by Jamey Aebersold. The appropriate chord changes are in different spots in the book according to your instrument.