Audition Materials for Percussion

2024-2025, Version F

SEMYO Orchestras

Prelude Winds is an ensemble for students who play a woodwind, brass, or percussion instrument with 1–2 years of playing experience. Participants will learn proper instrument technique, how to play together as an ensemble, and how to follow a conductor. Prelude Winds may also have opportunities to perform in an orchestral setting with SEMYO string players.

Philharmonic Orchestra is a full orchestra experience for students who play a string, woodwind, brass, or percussion instrument. String players typically need 3-4 years experience and percussion and wind/brass players typically need 2 or more years playing experience.

Concert Orchestra is a full orchestra experience for advanced students on string, woodwind, brass, harp, and percussion instruments. Literature includes original masterworks for full symphony orchestra. Students may play music in any key and utilize advanced techniques.

for the 2024-2025 season

Please remember:

  • No metronome
  • No headphones/earphones/etc
  • No need to announce your name or what you’re playing. 😎

1. Solo

  • If you are auditioning for Prelude Winds, you do not have to record a solo.
  • For Philharmonic Orchestra and Concert Orchestra, please record one solo between 1-2 minutes (up to 1 page) that best demonstrates your abilities. Solos need not be memorized.
  • Choose your selection with guidance from your private teacher or orchestra/band director. If you need a suggestion on which solo to prepare, please contact us at [email protected]!

2. Excerpts

For Prelude Winds, please record excerpts #1 and #2.

For Philharmonic Orchestra, please record excerpts #1 through #4.

For Concert Orchestra, please record excerpts #3 through #6.

Excerpt #1 for Snare Drum: “Winter Winds” by Randall Standridge
Tempo: ♩ = 132

Excerpt #2 for Mallets: “At Twilight” by Tyler S. Grant
Tempo: ♩ = 88


Excerpt #3 for Snare Drum: A Hectic Overture by John Lloyd
Tempo: ♩ = 140
Note: Play the top line of notes. Skip the rests at m. 74-77 and m. 99-101. Observe the rests at m. 78-79.


Excerpt #4 for Bells: “Jupiter: Bringer of Jollity” from The Planets by Gustav Holst (arr. Vernon Leidig)
Tempo: For m. 52–57, ♩ = 120. For m. 83–101, ♩ = 75. For m. 102–109, ♩ = 120
Note: Skip the rests at m. 58-82. Take the 2nd ending at m. 99. Do not take the repeat at m. 109.


Excerpt #5 for Snare Drum: Spring Festival Overture by Huanzhi Li (View Recording)
Tempo: ♩ = 134


Excerpt #6 for Glockenspiel (Bells): Sorcerer’s Apprentice by Paul Dukas
Tempo: ♩. = 120 (One measure @ 120). Listen to a reference recording.


3. Scales

For all these scales, you may record on any mallet instrument with the requisite range.

For Prelude Winds, record scale #1.

For Philharmonic Orchestra, record scales #1 and #2.

For Concert Orchestra, record scales #2 and #3.

Scale #1. B♭ Major, 1 Octave. Suggested Tempo is ♩ = 72.


Scale #2. Chromatic Scale, 1.5 Octaves. Tempo is ♩ = 120.


Scale #3. F# Melodic Minor, 2 Octaves. Tempo is ♩ = 160.