NAMTA Performance Auditions

Audition Details

Audition: 2021 TBD

Entry Deadline: 

NAMTA members must have their MTNA membership number available to access the application form. If your MTNA/TMTA/NAMTA membership is not current, you will not be able to access the application form. Non-MTNA/TMTA/NAMTA members may participate in the Performance Auditions. However the application fee for non-members is $100.00 for each student entered. To participate as a non-member, please contact either Sarah Barham (piano) or Dana Meyer (strings).


All NAMTA teachers who enter their students in the Performance Auditions event will be required to be available to help with some aspect of the event on that day. Teachers who are unable to attend are required to find a substitute, such as a parent, to be at the event in their place.  Students of teachers who cannot attend or who are unable to provide a substitute for the day of the Performance Auditions will not be eligible to participate in the NAMTA Performance Auditions event.

Fee: The fee is $25 for all solo entries and $10 for each performer in an ensemble.  Teachers can pay online by visiting Google Pay and entering the user name Please include your name and event in the memo area.


Or, teachers can write one check made payable to “NAMTA” with the memo "Performance Audition".  Send the check to NAMTA Treasurer:

Simone Parker

442 Bluff Dr.

Clarksville,TN 37043


Guidelines and General Information

An important aspect of musicianship is the opportunity for students of members and non-members to enter auditions and competitions.

NAMTA has three categories in which students enter auditions: Elementary (Grades K-5), Junior (Grades 6-8), and Senior (Grades 9-12). 

NAMTA Performance Auditions follow the TMTA state guidelines to provide a number of benefits. These include:

  1. Worthwhile goals for teachers.

  2. Goals and opportunities for students.

  3. Constructive criticism to students and teachers.

  4. A purposeful program to develop musicianship and performance skills.

  5. Opportunities for achieving the highest possible standards in the art of musical instruction and performance. 

Performance Requirements

1. In order to participate in the NAMTA Performance Auditions, a Performance Auditions Application Form must be filled out online for each student and submitted no later than January 31, 2020. This form can only be accessed from the NAMTA website. Also, NAMTA members must have their MTNA membership number available to access the application form. If your MTNA/TMTA/NAMTA membership is not current, you will not be able to access the application form.


2. All participants must have studied with their teacher/co-teachers for a minimum of six months prior to the NAMTA auditions, and must still be with the same teacher/co-teachers at the time of the auditions.

3. Repertoire must include a minimum of three pieces representing three of the following periods: Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Impressionistic, Modern, Contemporary. Evaluations will be based on the quality of the performance, not the difficulty of the music. 

4. Memorization is required except for avant-garde works written after 1950. The student will bring two published copies of the non-memorized music to be performed. Compositions written for prepared piano are not permitted. 

5. Students must provide the judge(s) one score for each work listed on the application. Students who do not have their music on the day of the audition will NOT be allowed to perform. Instrumental students may provide either the solo part or the complete score. All entrants and accompanists must abide by the federal Copyright Law. Photocopies of scores are NOT ALLOWED. (Check the MTNA website for Audition requirements, rules, and regulations: Music printed from online sites must be accompanied by a copyright release form available at the registration desk. Music presented to the judges must have a measure number at the beginning of each system. It is not necessary to number every measure. This conforms to TMTA and MTNA standards.

6. Instrumentalists must have an accompanist unless the selection is an unaccompanied composition. Teachers may accompany their own students.

7. The process for creating the final room schedules is complicated. Consequently, it is not possible to honor requests for specific times on the day of the Performance Auditions. It is advisable to tell your students that they should be available any time from 8:30am - 12:00noon on the day of the Auditions. Although, depending upon how many students in a specific grade are registered, some rooms may have to continue into the afternoon after a short lunch break. Once you receive notification of your student's audition times, those times cannot be changed.

8. Once an application has been submitted, no changes can be made regarding repertoire selections or theory tests and scores.

9. Students who want to participate in the NAMTA Honors Recitals are NOT required to take the TMTA Musicianship (Theory) Tests, but do have to have make a SUPERIOR in the NAMTA Performance Auditions.


Rules for Competition

Please refer to the section in the TMTA/MTNA Guidelines and Applications booklet “Rules Applicable to All Auditions.”

Performance Times

Maximum Performance Times: Grades K-5: 10 minutes Grades 6-8: 15 minutes Grades 9-12: 20 minutes. The judges may choose to start and stop any piece.

Theory & Musicianship Exams

NAMTA does not hold a theory day for testing students. NAMTA teachers administer the Musicianship Tests to their own students, usually during the month of January in order to report the test results on the NAMTA Performance Auditions Application Form which is due by January 31. Teachers can share testing responsibilities with colleagues if they choose. 

All students in grades 3 through 12 entering solo auditions at the local level are required to take the TMTA Musicianship Tests. Pianists and organists take four tests. Instrumentalists and vocalists take three. All may choose their tests from any of the eight categories. If they wish, they may use the piano for some of the tests. There are also six levels of sight-reading and technique for flute. A passing score is an average of 70 on the examinations taken. Categories exempt from the Musicianship Tests are: K-2, Ensemble, Collegiate and Adult.

There are eight tests with eight levels each, including: Written Theory, Aural Theory, Sight Reading, Keyboard Harmony, Terms, Transposition, Music History and Technique. Pianists must take four exams and all other students take three exams. A total average of 70% is considered passing. Students in grades 1-2 and university students are exempt from musicianship exams. Piano students must take an examination in a selected level of difficulty from FOUR different areas. Non-keyboard students must take an examination in a selected level of difficulty from three different areas to be selected from Music History, Terms and Signs, Written Theory, and Aural Theory.

A student may select an area at any level of difficulty. A minimum entrance level is neither required nor suggested. The student need not enter the four selected areas at the same level of difficulty. 

The grade of 70 or above is a passing grade for all of the examinations. Students must receive an average score of 70 or above on all selected areas to be eligible to advance to State Auditions. To determine the average score, scores below 50 should be counted as 50. For example, a student received scores of 92, 68, 71, and 25. To determine the average score, add 92, 68, 71, and 50 for the sum of 281. Divide 281 by four and arrive at the average score of 70.25. This student is eligible to advance to State Auditions. Students who score 70 or above on any particular level should progress to a higher level the following year, provided, of course, that the same area is selected the following year.

In order for your students to participate in the NAMTA YAAA Competition or the TMTA State Auditions (competitions), your students must have completed and passed the TMTA Musicianship Tests (Theory Tests) and those scores must be reported on the NAMTA Performance Auditions Application Form as described above. Also, the students must have made a SUPERIOR in the NAMTA Performance Auditions.


In order for your students to participate in the NAMTA Honors Recitals, your students must have made a SUPERIOR in the NAMTA Auditions. A passing grade on the Theory Test is not required.

If you are a new MTNA/TMTA/NAMTA member and have not received a hard copy of the TMTA Musicianship Manual, you can get a copy here or by contacting Barbara Hildebrand. There is a charge for the hard copy:  $15.00,  plus $8.50 shipping. Scores for musicianship exams will not be accepted after the deadline for the Performance Audition Application.

Application and Registration Fees
  1. Please submit all applications online. If this is not possible, please contact Amanda Welch,

  2. Indicate Musicianship Level by Numbers 1-8 and test scores in percentages. (DO NOT USE ROMAN NUMERALS!)

  3. Under repertoire, include opus numbers, names of movements and Musical Period.(Repertoire must use three of the five musical periods.)

Application deadlines and performance audition dates will be strictly followed.  TMTA allows students to enter auditions at another location if there is a conflict.

To receive a record of your Performance Audition Applications, click here. 

Click to fill out online application in our Member Resources area.


Click to download this information.


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