Application and Deadlines

Complete and submit the online application available at the Graduate School under "Graduate School Degree Seeking" section.

The application is a three-step process for all students:

  1. We will begin accepting pre-screening audition DVD/CD/web links on December 1 to Sacred Music Program, 248 Malloy Hall, Notre Dame IN 46556; phone: 574-631-1300 or emailed to Please see below for repertory requirements established by the faculty.
  2. Prospective students must complete the online graduate school application by December 1.  When applying online, please complete the "Graduate School Degree Seeking" section. The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is NOT required for MSM applicants. 

  3. Regarding the TOEFL score for those who need it:  We will not be able to invite students to the live audition who have not submitted the TOEFL by January 15. All the rest of the application must be complete by December 1.

  4. Selected students will be invited to campus for interviews and audition on Sunday, February 11 and Monday, February 12, 2018; a small number of these will be admitted to the program. Please note that those applicants who are invited for auditions will be given a basic musicianship and piano sight-reading (4-part hymn) exam in addition to an audition in the concentration. There will be assistance with transportation and accomodations.

    If you are unable to meet the deadline with any part of your application submission, please contact the Sacred Music Program at 574-631-1300 or

Prerequisites & Application Requirements - MSM Program

Students applying to the Sacred Music MSM Program should have the following:

1)  A bachelor’s degree, BM, BS, BA or BME, in music.

2)  Application requirements include:

  • TOEFL or IELTS for non-native speakers of English no later than January 15
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Statement of intent
  • Pre-screening audition materials; see below for more details
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • International students whose native language is not English must submit Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores, no later than January 15, to demonstrate language proficiency. Both tests are offered several times each year at sites in the United States and abroad; for those taking the TOEFL, the university’s institution code is: 1841.
    If you are taking the TOEFL IBT, then the minimum score is a total of 80 points, with a minimum of 23 on the Speaking section.
    If you are taking the IELTS, the minimum score is 7.0.

Guidelines for Pre-Screening Audition Materials

Prospective students must send a pre-screening audition DVD/CD/web links to the Sacred Music Program, 248 Malloy Hall, Notre Dame IN 46556; phone: 574-631-1300 or by email to 

A. Organ concentration: a major work by J. S. Bach (a Prelude and Fugue; Concerto; Trio Sonata; Major Chorale Preludes from the Leipzig Chorales or the Clavierübung III) and two contrasting pieces of upper-division undergraduate repertoire.

B. Choral Conducting concentration: The choral conducting pre-screening materials should consist of video recordings of both rehearsal and performance situations.  A variety of repertoire style is recommended. The video recordings should be delivered in DVD format by mail,  or as links to online postings on YouTube or a private website. For administrative reasons, online links are preferable.

C. Voice concentration:  Four selections taken from the art song repertory and arias from oratorios and/or operas; must include 3 languages other than English, at least one aria, and show contrasting styles. We prefer that the DVD/CD or web links be of a live performance in concert, but if this is not possible we will accept prepared performances for the recording.

Once the admissions committee has reviewed all of the application materials, successful applicants will be invited to a daylong visit to the campus of the University of Notre Dame for a live audition.  There will be assistance with transportation and accommodations.

Here they will meet with the faculty and students, and proceed through the following audition activities:

1. (For conductors only) Written diagnostic  exam in music history and analysis. The applicants will answer general questions about Western European and American art and sacred music history, including identification of musical styles and formal analysis of musical excerpts.

2. (For conductors only) Diagnostic exam in musical skills. The applicants will be asked to harmonize a simple melody at the piano, sightread an excerpt, take aural dictation and analyze elements in a score, such as instrumentation and formal procedures.

3. (For conductors only) Rehearsing and conducting our Concordia Choir. Applicants will submit two choices of repertoire to be rehearsed and conducted for 10-15 minutes with the Master Singers. The faculty at Notre Dame will indicate if either or both pieces can be conducted.

4. Interview. The applicants will meet with the faculty to discuss their background and their artistic and career goals.

5. (For organists only) Audition in person with the organ faculty, playing previously agreed repertoire.

6. (For singers only) Applied Musicianship Diagnostic Exam. The applicants will demonstrate their musicianship skills in sight-singing, and piano sight-reading (4-part Chorales on two staves).

7. (For singers only) Audition in person with the voice faculty. 4-5 selections taken from the art song repertory and oratorio/opera arias; including at least one aria, four languages, and stylistic variety.

For further information regarding the Sacred Music Program, contact the Sacred Music office at or by phone (574-631-1300).