The College of Arts and Architecture


There is no pre-screening required.

Those auditioning for the M.M. in Piano Performance, the M.M. in Pedagogy and Performance (with track in piano), or the Professional Performance Certificate should prepare a program equivalent to an undergraduate performance degree senior recital (around 40-60 minutes total). For example:

  • a complete Beethoven, Haydn, or Mozart sonata of significant size and difficulty (Beethoven's Op. 49 is unacceptable)
  • a Chopin ballade or comparable romantic work
  • a Baroque work (e.g. an advanced prelude and fugue from the Well-Tempered Clavier by J.S. Bach)
  • an Impressionist or contemporary work of similar difficulty

The program is flexible; applicants are not required to include all of these sample categories.

Those auditioning for the Piano Performance should prepare a program of 50-60 minutes, equivalent in technical difficulty to an M.M. performance degree recital, and must show potential ability to perform professionally. Required in your program are:

  • any major work by Johann Sebastian Bach. Preludes and fugues are permitted. (No transcriptions)
  • one complete major classical sonata (Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert)
  • one substantial work representing nineteenth-century romanticism and/or early twentieth-century impressionism
  • either one 20th or 21st-century work of at least five minutes in length by a composer post-dating impressionism - OR one virtuosic ├ętude

All selections must be memorized with the possible exception of avant-garde works of the 20th and 21st-centuries. These exceptions must be approved by the faculty before scheduling an audition.

Specific questions about repertoire may be addressed to any member of the piano faculty: Christopher Guzman, Kristin Stephenson, or Timothy Shafer.

A live audition for all degrees is preferred. However, international students and others who may not be able to travel to the University Park campus to audition are may submit a DVD or YouTube links (please see Recorded vs. Live Auditions.)

Please send a DVD recording and Supervised Recording Statement to:

School of Music Graduate Admissions
The Pennsylvania State University
233 Music Building
University Park, PA 16802-1901

Youtube links may be emailed to Professor Christopher Guzman at

To schedule a live audition, please complete the online audition scheduling form. If unable to meet any of the audition date options, please email Christopher Guzman at to schedule an appointment.

Auditionees should plan to be present from 10:15 a.m. until 5:00 p.m on the day of the audition as the piano faculty may schedule meeting times and call-back auditions with some candidates.

Available teaching assistantships will be offered in early March, and late auditionees will be at a competitive disadvantage. Those applicants auditioning for assistantships may be asked to sightread at the audition.

Contact: Christopher Guzman