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Arts Supplement FAQ

This page features Frequently Asked Questions about the Stanford Arts Portfolio process. Please read through the questions carefully. If you are unable to find an answer to your question, contact the Department of Music directly.

General Arts Portfolio Questions:

What is an Arts Portfolio?

An Arts Portfolio (formerly the Arts Supplement) is a way for students to highlight their talents and accomplishments in the fine arts or performing arts. Stanford applicants with serious interest or background in music, musical performance, or composition may choose to supplement their admission application with an audition in music. Audition videos, compositional media, and supporting documents must be uploaded via the SlideRoom site from Common Application. Recordings may reside on an external site such as Youtube or Vimeo, and can be submitted by posting a hyperlink to the online audition. Vocal, instrumental, and conducting files must be submitted in video format. No audio-only files will be accepted, except in the case of composition applicants.Performers may choose to audition live for most instrument and voice areas. Due to limited availability, we can only schedule one live audition per applicant. (For further details, see Live Auditions.)

How does an Arts Portfolio affect my application for admission?

An Arts Portfolio is treated as one factor among many in an undergraduate application. These materials are entirely optional and will be reviewed at the discretion of the Office of Undergraduate Admission and the fine arts faculty.

What instrument areas are you able to evaluate?

Please refer to the evaluation list on our Arts Portfolio page.

Are there any repertoire requirements?

We review all submissions that come in complete and by the appropriate deadline.

VOCALISTS should submit one piece in English, and one in another language.

COMPOSERS have no time limit, and should submit two or three scores of contrasting style with realizations.

Is there a desired format for the musical résumé?

Not necessarily. However, résumés should have a hierarchy of text and a clear organizational structure. Commonly listed items include: current and previous instructors, notable soloist opportunities, employment related to music, awards and honors, and select repertoire lists.

Is there a preference between Live and Recorded submissions?

No. Live and recorded auditions are given the same consideration, and are often evaluated by the same faculty. Benefits of a live audition include meeting a faculty member in person, visiting Stanford and seeing the Braun Music Center’s instruments and performance spaces (if attending auditions at Stanford), and can be especially successful for a charismatic student who excels in live performance. Benefits of a recorded audition include the ability to record multiple takes of a video, and submitting on your own timeline, while abiding to the required deadlines. 

Arts Supplement Recording Questions:

I play more than one instrument. Can I include multiple instruments on my 10-minute recording?

No. Separate instrument recordings should be submitted as separate files. Applicants are able to submit up to two arts supplements university wide, in the areas of Music, Theater, Dance, or Art Practice. Here in Music, one instrument = one Arts Portfolio. Different instrument or vocal areas should be submitted as separate Arts Portfolios. Classical and jazz submissions should be considered separate instrument or voice areas.

For example, an applicant who plays both cello and piano will need to upload:

For cello

  • Video recording (or link to online source).
  • Cello musical résumé.
  • Confidential recommendation from music instructor or a music mentor via SlideRoom.

For piano

  • Piano video recording (or link to online source).
  • Piano musical résumé.
  • Confidential recommendation from music instructor or a music mentor via SlideRoom.

Am I allowed to have an accompanist? Do I need one?

You are welcome to have an accompanist in your video. However, your video should focus on you and your performance abilities, not those of your accompanist. The video should demonstrate your performance clearly, both in sound and appearance. If you would prefer to perform without an accompanist, you are not required to have one.

Arts Supplement Live Audition Questions:

Am I required to provide an accompanist? Or will one be provided for me?

Accompanists are not required. However, please note that if you want an accompanist, we can only provide accompanist for VOCALISTS auditioning at STANFORD. If you are not a vocalist, or are auditioning at a regional city, and want an accompanist for your audition, please plan to make your own arrangements. If you are planning on auditioning live at Stanford and would like to utilize the services of one of our staff accompanists, fill out our Accompanist Request Form.

Don’t see the answer to your question here? Ask the Undergraduate Student Services Officer.

Last modified on: 
Friday, November 13, 2015