Audition Guidelines & Scholarships

Prospective Music Majors & Non-Majors

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Audition Dates

February 3
February 24

Audition Dates

March 23
April 13

Video Audition deadline

April 27

Audition Guidelines

Prospective Students

All dates are for Instrumental & Vocal students. See guidelines for Major auditions and Non-Major auditions below

  • November 18
  • February 3
  • February 24
  • March 23
  • April 13
  • Video deadline extended to April 27


Perform approximately 10 minutes of music that includes a technical excerpt and a melodic or lyrical excerpt, or a solo that demonstrates both technical and lyrical playing.

Excerpts may be taken from a standard solo or etude, a piece from the UIL contest list, UIL region etudes, or similar pieces.

Prospective majors – perform works for timpani, snare, and keyboard percussion. Excerpts may be taken from a standard solo or etude, a piece from the UIL contest list, UIL region etudes, or similar pieces.

Prospective non-majors – perform 5-10 minutes of music and include at least two of the listed instruments.

Perform from at least two of the following categories:

  • Any work of J. S. Bach or D. Scarlatti
  • Any sonata movement of Haydn, Mozart, or Beethoven
  • A composition of the Romantic period (Chopin, Schumann, Brahms, etc.)
  • An Impressionist (Debussy, Ravel, etc.) or Contemporary composition


Perform in at least two of the following categories:

  • A solo from the UIL list
  • An art song from the Baroque, Classic or Romantic era in a foreign language
  • A contemporary art song in English
  • An aria from an operetta, oratorio, or opera, in either the original language or a translation

Voice major auditions also consist of sight-reading and an interview with the faculty. An accompanist is provided for all voice major auditions.


  • Perform one solo in English or a foreign language (typically a solo from the UIL list)
  • Students may sing a hymn such as “Amazing Grace”

Non-major choral scholarship auditions also consist of sight-reading and an interview with the faculty. An accompanist is provided for all auditions.

Video Auditions

Fill out the Video Audition Form completely, including a link (YouTube, Vimeo, etc.) to your video.

If you have any questions about auditions, please contact us.


Contact Us


or contact

Laura Dickson
Phone: (325) 674-4892

Awarding Criteria

We recommend that you choose audition material that best represents your abilities. Criteria for awarding scholarships are:

  • Demonstrated performance skill and musicianship
  • Needs within the department
  • Available funds
General Information

1. Scholarships in music are available to qualified music and non-music majors. Music scholarships require an audition. Big Purple Band Scholarships require no audition. All recipients are expected to participate in a major performing ensemble in their performance area both semesters. Those who are awarded music major scholarships are expected to enroll in the prescribed music courses.

2. Scholarship auditions are held each year for incoming freshmen and transfer students. Live auditions are scheduled on Audition Dates (preferred) or by appointment with the appropriate division. To schedule an audition, please fill out our online audition form. For more information, please email, or contact Laura Dickson (, 325.674.4892).

3. All music scholarships are recommended by a committee of ACU music faculty and are approved by the ACU Student Financial Services Office.

1. All students participating in the Big Purple Marching Band (in good academic and behavioral standing with the University) will receive a scholarship award for the fall semester.

2. Current scholarship awards are as follows. These participation scholarships are tied to the cost of tuition and will increase if there is an increase in tuition.

  • First year – $1,670
  • Second year – $1,770
  • Third year – $1,870
  • Fourth year – $1,970

3. No auditions are required at this time for this scholarship. Please contact us if you are interested in receiving this award.

Contact Us
Laura Dickson
Administrative Coordinator for Ensembles and Recruiting
ACU Box 28274
Abilene, Texas 79699-8274
Phone: 325-674-4892

Past Scholarship Recipients

This scholarship was set up in 1985 for voice majors.  The first award was given in 1988.

2016-2017           Joram Alford, Mikalia Bradberry, Caitlin Norquist
2015-2016           Ashley Stucker
2014-2015           Jennifer Magill, Kaleigh Sutula, Naomi Worley
2012-2013           Dean Willis
2009-2010           Jessica Lemmons, Coretta Smith
2008-2009           Kristin Brown, Adrienne Linge
2007-2008           Shalesia Rhodes, Randy Yeats
2006-2007           Kyle Orr
2005-2006           Mateo Coronado
2004-2005           Holly Whited
2003-2004           Farron McDonald
2002-2003           D.J. Bulls, Jamie Dahman
2000-2001           Barry Fox
1999-2000           Marquel Davis
1998-1999           Chris Byrd
1997-1998           Chris Byrd
1996-1997           D.J. Lopez
1995-1996           D.J. Lopez
1994-1995           Corey Humphrey, Wendy Humphrey
1993-1994           Robin Chenault
1992-1993           Rick Piersall
1991-1992           Jennifer Langford
1990-1991           Betsy Rives
1989-1990           RaeAnne White
1988-1989           Cheryl Davis

This scholarship originated in 1988 at the suggestion of Philip Gabbard in memory of Bill Reese for Instrumental music majors and non-majors. Bill Reese was a graduate of Abilene Christian University in 1967, drum major and trombone player for the Big Purple Band all four of his college years. Marine 2nd Lt. William Robert Reese was killed in action in the Vietnam War on February 14, 1968.

The first scholarship award was given from the earnings of this endowment in 1992. This scholarship has become a prestigious award given to a student for their contribution to the Big Purple Band. The students are chosen in the spring (announced at the Band Banquet in May) for the following school year. The Director of Bands, Associate Director and staff make the selection based on leadership, academic achievement and servant characteristics.

2022-2023           Benjamin Briggs
2021-2022           Leighton Meyer
2020-2021           Xel-Ha Salinas
2019-2020            Sara Broughton
2018-2019             Alli Mae Bulkley
2017-2018             Meghan Starteri
2016-2017             James Loera
2015-2016             Grayson Hancock
2014-2015             Andrew Penney
2013-2014             Daniel Archer
2012-2013             Courtney McGaha
2009-2010            Jaylynn Phillips
2008-2009            Paul Arrington, Alex Ferguson, Evan Woods
2007-2008            Leah Walter
2006-2007            Sam Selby
2005-2006            Lesiree Guerrero
2004-2005            Chris Brannan
2003-2004            Bradley Hardin, Andrew Straight
2002-2003            James Sumners, April Yarbrough
2001-2002            Jacob Faske, Karen Phipps
2000-2001            Kevin Broome, Amber McDonald
1999-2000            Kevin Broome
1998-1999            Marcus Carroll
1997-1998            Kevin Whitelaw
1996-1997            Brian Nuckels
1995-1996            Chris Carroll
1994-1995            Russell Willerton
1993-1994            Joe Hooten
1992-1993            Joe Hooten, Kelly Neill