Starting in fall 2019, applicants to the B.F.A. in musical theater are required to submit a pre-screen audition to be considered for a live audition. If invited for a live audition, applicants should prepare the live audition requirements below.
Applicants to the B.F.A. in contemporary theater and the M.F.A. in musical theater do not require a pre-screen; they can schedule and prepare a live audition according to the requirements within their specific program below.
For B.F.A. in Musical Theater Applicants Only; No Pre-Screen Required for M.F.A. in Musical Theater Applicants
Introduce yourself, explain where you are from, and why you want to attend Boston Conservatory at Berklee. Time limit: 1 minute maximum.
Two contrasting songs, 32 bars each (i.e. verse and chorus), one uptempo and one ballad. Choose songs that are clear and simple. Avoid songs that are complicated technically, or are difficult to sing. We want to hear tone, musicality, and ease to determine vocal health and vocal development thus far. Avoid extensive cutting and pasting of songs to meet the requirement. Time limit: 2 minute maximum (1 minute per song, approximately).
One upbeat contemporary (postwar) monologue, in your age range. Time limit: 1 minute maximum.
Optional Additional Material
Boston Conservatory at Berklee encourages its students to express their individuality. Show us something that demonstrates your unique talents and creativity. Examples could be dance, original work, acrobatics, circus, instrument, impersonation, etc. Time limit: 1 minute maximum.
Live Audition Requirements
For B.F.A. and M.F.A. in Musical Theater Applicants
Live auditions for undergraduate and graduate musical theater applicants include an acting, voice, and dance audition. Applicants should prepare age-appropriate material. There is no musicianship/theory exam or sight-reading at the auditions.
Note: Live audition registrations are available on a first-come, first-served basis as applications are submitted. In the event that you are unable to attend a live audition due to space availability, we will accept a recorded audition.
Musical theater applicants must prepare two short, contrasting monologues from the following:
- Modern postwar literature: examples of postwar dramatists are Arthur Miller, Tennessee Williams, Edward Albee, William Inge, and Sam Shepard.
- Classical literature: examples of classical pieces include Shakespeare’s comedies and histories or Molière.
- A four-minute time limit for the total acting portion of the audition will be enforced.
Musical theater applicants must prepare two brief, contrasting songs from the Broadway repertoire: one ballad and one upbeat selection. Applicants should:
- Select songs that demonstrate vocal quality, phrasing, rhythmic skills, and lyric interpretation.
- Select songs that express a character’s feelings more than songs that tell a story (avoid narrative songs).
- Prepare age-appropriate material.
- Avoid long intros leading into songs.
- Limit each song to two minutes, preferably 32 bars (a verse and a chorus).
Applicants must bring pre-recorded accompaniment on an MP3 player (no CDs permitted). We will provide speakers and an auxiliary plug for your device. There will be no CD player or piano available in the audition room. Again, a four-minute time limit for the total singing portion of the audition will be enforced.
Musical theater applicants should be prepared to learn a combination in various musical theater styles. Applicants should choose from the following appropriate attire options for their dance audition:
- Unitard or leotard, dance pants or dance skirts.
- Solid-colored shirt or tank top.
- Yoga wear and/or athleisure is also appropriate.
- Form-fitting attire and appropriate dance shoes (ballet slippers, character shoes, jazz shoes) are required. Tap shoes are not required.
Bachelor of Fine Arts
No Pre-Screen Required
Performance training and ensemble performance are integral to the contemporary theater program, and all applicants are required to audition. Auditions for contemporary theater applicants include an individual audition and ensemble audition. Because of the ensemble nature of the program and the audition, we do not accept recorded auditions from applicants in the 48 contiguous states. International applicants or applicants residing in Hawaii or Alaska may request a recorded audition combined with a Skype interview. To schedule your audition, first submit an online application and follow the steps in the confirmation email.
Contemporary theater applicants must prepare two contrasting contemporary monologues: one comic and one serious. Monologues should be objective-driven rather than story-driven and should be drawn from a significant play written between 1960 and the present. Monologues should be age-appropriate, and applicants should be familiar with the full play. A three-minute time limit will be enforced. Following the individual and ensemble audition, applicants will be interviewed individually by Conservatory faculty members
The ensemble portion of the audition is designed to be a practical workshop in ensemble theater techniques. Working in small groups, applicants will be guided through a series of voice and movement exercises, improvisations, and creative tasks by a Conservatory faculty member. Applicants are expected to dress in appropriate movement clothes (T-shirts, leggings, warm-up pants) for this portion of the audition and should expect to practice in bare feet.
Please bring an artistic résumé to the audition, and include any of the following:
- Performance experience
- Performance training (acting, directing, dance/choreography, playwriting, design, stage crew, etc.)
- Special skills (combat training, circus, accents, etc.)
- Applied study (instrument or voice, with whom, for how long)
- Festivals and summer programs attended
Supplementary Materials (optional)
Students who have significant strengths in other areas of theater-making are encouraged to bring supplementary materials (directing portfolio, playwriting, design portfolio, etc.) to be weighed in conjunction with the audition. If they choose to, applicants may upload documents online prior to the live audition or bring a hard copy of these materials to the audition to give to the faculty. Note: These supplementary materials are not required for admission consideration.
Recorded auditions for the B.F.A. in contemporary theater are accepted only from international applicants and applicants residing in Hawaii or Alaska. These auditions consist of two recorded assignments (one solo composition and one ensemble composition), a Skype monologue audition, and a Skype interview.
Only international applicants and residents of Alaska and Hawaii may submit a recorded audition. Recorded auditions will not be accepted from students residing in the 48 contiguous states; they must audition live in Boston or regionally. If you choose to send a recording, it must be in video format and satisfy all the requirements listed above.
For the musical theater dance call requirement, record a musical theater-style dance piece on a stage or in a studio. The piece should be no longer than one minute and 30 seconds. Please show technique as well as musicality. Incomplete recorded auditions for musical theater will not be considered for admission.
All applicants are encouraged to introduce themselves and provide any information they would like to convey to the faculty.
All undergraduate pre-screen and recorded auditions are submitted online. Instructions on how to submit pre-screen and recorded auditions will be sent to you after your application is submitted.